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Daily Devotion

Matthew 10:38

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READ:

Matthew 10:38

38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.

EXHORTATION:

What is peculiar about the “cross” that every follower of Christ must bear? The cross was usually two rough wooden beams – one long and one short – joined together near the top of the long beam. It was an apparatus meant to inflict pain and death. Victims were forced to carry it to the place of their crucifixion. It placed on them not only a heavy burden, but also shame and disgrace. Thus the phrase “carrying the cross” has become a symbolic expression for shame, suffering and death one must endure.

Every follower of Christ has “his” own cross to bear. Christians must be prepared to endure whatever is burdensome, or trying, or considered as disgraceful, in order to be loyal and obedient followers of Christ.

Consecration to our Lord can mean giving up of our desires and pursuits to do His will. To some, it may be the giving up of certain pleasures, gains or advantages for Christ’s sake. To others, it could mean leaving familiar circumstances and people to go to far places in order to preach the Gospel.

Commitment to the Lord Jesus can also cause some to meet with opposition from family members, friends and even authorities. In such circumstances, the cross can mean endurance of reproach, loss of inheritance or possession, persecution and even death!

For others, it may involve the severance of friendships or relationships which are dishonouring to God. For Christ’s sake, Christians must be willing to be separated from every kind of ungodly human relationship.

Those who hesitate to suffer loss and shame would often turn away from Christ. There are wives who will not come to Christ for fear of separation from their unbelieving husbands, and vice versa. There are children who will not come to Christ for fear of their unbelieving fathers or mothers. Similarly, parents deny Christ for fear of their unbelieving children. People who value their family more than Christ will not take a stand for Him.

However, those who endure all kinds of losses and sufferings for Christ’s sake shall have Him to lead them. They will have the Lord to follow after, who will lead them all the way. Christ-followers are happy cross-bearers. They count everything as loss for the joy of gaining Christ for themselves.