Do we really get what it means to take up our cross? Do I really get it? Matthew 16:24 says, Then Jesus said to his disciples "Whoever wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me."
When Jesus carried His cross, I imagine the very people who used to listen to him, beating him. They beat him while he carried this oddly shaped heavy object. He pushed on. He said, "Not my will, but your will Father." His eyes were on the Father, while people beat him, and mocked him. "Save yourself if you are the King of the Jews," they would say.
What does this mean for you and me? Here's a picture of Christ keeping His eyes on the Father and knowing that what He was doing was the Father's will for His life. Christ's life was given because of God's LOVE for us. Yet the very same people that beat and mocked him, were the people that God gave His son for. Can we even fathom what it means to take up our cross like Jesus did? Jesus did three things that we can learn from. First He kept His eyes on the Father, and second He focused, not on His own will for His life but the Father's will. And, lastly, he focused on His love for US! Jesus says, "Father forgive them for they know not what they do."
I keep thinking.... did I really know what it meant to take up my cross daily and follow him? I think I'm starting to have a vague understanding, and He's showing me more and more. I just imagine God Himself, in the form of a man, being beaten while carrying His cross. I don't think anyone can fully grasp what this was like for Jesus, but He tells us to "take up our cross". Today I want to focus on God's will, and why he is allowing these things in my life. The Lord allows us to suffer so that others might see Christ through our lives. In order to take up our cross, we must keep our eyes on Christ, focus on God's will for our life, not our own. And lastly, focus on the lives that will be touched through what God is doing in your life.
So when life it getting you down, remember what Jesus said. John 16:33 says, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world!"
Be encouraged today. He has already overcome the world!!