The Christian is one who has been chosen by Jesus. He said, ‘you did not choose me, I chose you.’
The Christian has been chosen to be a disciple or follower of Jesus. This means not only knowing Him and loving Him and trusting Him, but it also means being totally committed to Him.
His is how Jesus described a disciple: ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and takeup his cross and follow me.’
Jesus was not talking about giving up sweets for Lent or denying oneself some small luxury. It is something far more radical - saying ‘no’ to the old self-centered way of living and thinking and saying ‘yes’ to Jesus. A disciple is a learner, and as a disciple I will want to listen to Jesus and obey Him. For my life is no longer mine to do what I like with. It now belongs to Jesus. He is the Lord and Master of all that I have. I am answerable to Him for what I do with what rightly belongs to Him.
TAKE UP MY CROSS
For Jesus the cross meant pain and shame, loneliness and rejection, suffering and death. Jesus calls His disciples to follow that same path and not to be surprised when misunderstanding and opposition come. Probably more Christians are suffering for their faith today than in any other period of history.
To take up the cross is a picture of personal sacrifice. Jesus on the cross gave His life for us. He calls His disciples to give up their lives to Him.
The disciple aims to live like his master
- To care for others as Jesus did
- To accept people and love them as Jesus did
- To have time for people, especially any in need
- To be a light in the world by living a life of truth, honesty and compassion as Jesus did.