If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me. - Luke 9:23
Usually when we hear that someone is living in the shadow of another, it is not a good thing. It suggests that this person is living off another’s convictions and doesn’t have a mind of his own. However, in the Christian life this is a good thing if we are living in the shadow of the Cross.
The Cross defines our life. If we are truly disciples of Jesus Christ, then we follow in His footsteps, let Him define our convictions, and live for His purpose. This is what Jesus meant when He said, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me” (Luke 9:23).
Jesus, our Master, took up His cross, denied Himself, and followed the Father’s will completely. He was not here to have His needs met or to do His own thing. He was here to serve and to give His life. You and I are called to live in this shadow.
The cross redefines our life. It affects the way we view everything. The cross redefines leadership. Instead of leadership being a position of lording it over others, leadership is demonstrated through servanthood and humility. Instead of having a careless attitude toward sin, we take sin seriously. Instead of devaluing the marriage commitment, we esteem and honor the vows of marriage as lifelong promises. Instead of living to get rich, we are rich by living generously. Instead of seeking our own personal ambition, we seek the Kingdom of God.
It is the cross that makes the difference in our lives. It is the cross that defines what is valuable and important. It is at the cross where life really begins.
Are you living in the shadow of the cross?
Lee’s Summit Community Church
Lee’s Summit, Missouri
One-Year Bible Reading