Remember In a Pastor’s Bible Study last week, when we were talking about St. Paul toiling and even suffering for the sake of the Colossian church? Remember Cliff Ritter asking me about my calling? It was a moment when it came clear to me that I sure don’t want to suffer, and it made me wonder if I have it in me to really struggle to the point of suffering for you and your mission. You said “if any want to be my followers, let them deny themselves, take up their cross daily, and follow me.” (Luke 9:23) I don’t feel like I am carrying a cross for you God. I certainly don’t feel like I am giving my life away as Jesus did.
And yet, perhaps it is not as complicated as that. Would you show me, God? Show me how to serve others rather than try to fix them, even when I may disagree with them. Show me how to put their needs and wants ahead of my own, and to use my own resources, my own privilege, my own influence, to lift up others. “To whom much is given will much be expected,” (Luke 12:48) and you have given me much. Most of all, God, show me how to submit to your purposes and your will, rather than to my own. Show me how to be your follower, and carry my own cross today. Tomorrow, we will do it again.