Take Up Your Cross
The cross for many years represented shame. It symbolized the execution of a criminal and all who died paid the price for their sin. Death was the punishment for crimes committed against Rome. For the wages of sin is death and I deserve the penalty. But I am not alone Romans 3:10 says “There is no one righteous, not even one.” We all deserve death, but God sent His one and only Son to take our place of shame. He took the pain, He took the shame, and He took my cross of death and carried it. So, what does Jesus ask of me?
“Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.”
Matthew 16:24-25 NIV
The example, He lived, then Jesus asks that whoever wants to be His disciple would deny himself or herself and live a life of sacrifice. Every day we are to live a life devoted to Him and His calling. Surrendering to the cross doesn't symbolize shame but now taking up your cross symbolizes Hope. So, let us carry Hope every day. Let us demonstrate what Hope looks like. As we begin this month let us reflect on the choice we made to follow Jesus. Let us carry the cross knowing He took the sting of death and we are free from the penalty of sin.
Pastor Benaiah Snider