It’s been a while since my last post. I plan to do a write-up in the near future of our Association’s recent vision trip to West Virginia.
The following is my weekly article, “Soundbites,” that I write for our church newsletter:
I’ve had the following verse on my mind the last few days: “Then He said to [them] all, “If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” Luke 9:23 (HCSB).
Have you ever really thought about what would happen if all Christians would heed this command from Jesus? The world would never be the same. If we simplify everything we are commanded to do, I think it all comes down to Luke 9:23 and the Great Commission. Heeding Luke 9:23 begins with denying ourselves. This is a very hard thing to do of course, since we are selfish by nature. We want to look out for ourselves first. This is not what Jesus commands us to do. In fact, much of what we are taught from Jesus goes against our natural reactions.
Can you truly imagine a life of self-denial? Practicing this prepares us for the ultimate sacrifice for Christ, martyrdom. We must be willing to give our very lives for the name of Jesus. A question we must ask is, “Am I willing to give my life for the name of Christ?”
I pray that each of us is ready to do that very thing. When we can come to that point, we can truly deny ourselves every day, and therefore fulfill the command of Luke 9:23. We can then change our world.