Thursday, March 26, 2015

Thought of the Day !!

If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever would lose his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it.
                                           Mark 8:34-35 (ESV)

Just how serious do we take this passage?  In light of what our culture teaches us, which is to deny ourselves nothing and strive for everything, this can seem pretty incredulous.  The only time we are taught to deny ourselves is when we are being denied certain foods so that we can gain a better looking body, which according to the world today means skinnier.

Some Christians are denying something in their lives over the season of Lent.  They are basically fasting for this season, giving up something that was important to them for Christ.  I remember one year giving up caffeine.  When Easter morning came I gorged myself on coffee and then later soft drinks.  I was on a caffeine high all day.  Is this truly denying ourselves for Christ?

So what does it mean to deny myself and take up my cross and follow Jesus?  The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced that for me it is taking a stand against what the world teaches me is important in lieu of what Jesus teaches me.  It means that my success is not all about numbers or what the world sees as success.  It's about what makes my Father in Heaven proud of me.  I can be a huge success in this world, but if I have to do so by living by the world's standards, then I lose any rewards I could have stored up in Heaven.  

In this life we can lean on Jesus in the difficult times of our lives.  But we need to learn what it means to lose ourselves for Him in the other times as well.  For our success is predicated only upon how much we are willing to lose our lives for Him and the Gospel.  

In the love of Christ,



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