“How is life?” we are often asked.
“Busy, busy, busy!” we respond as we fake a smile.
“Oh man, I understand! We are always on the run.” we hear back.
We could and often do find ways to make ourselves busy with meaningless task.
We walk around bragging about how busy we are like it is a badge of honor. Is being busy really good? We make list of the little things that need to get done but never tackle the one thing that actually makes a difference.
We allow the remedial task of life to consume our day and put off the things that need to be done and the words that need to be said until tomorrow. And then tomorrow we will put them off “until tomorrow”. Soon we have filled our life will little piddly things and have not done a single thing with our life that matters.
Jesus told us to take up the cross and follow HIM. Now considering that a physical Roman crucifixion cross would weigh over 300 pounds, it’s gonna tough to carry your cross and a bunch of little meaningless things as well.
Let’s be nice and say that you only need to carry half of the cross at about 150 pounds. Pick it up, and remember now it’s not a smooth small iron barbell. It is a rough hefty piece of lumber.
Pick it up and carry it for a few minutes. Walk a mile if you can. Carry it any way you want, but do not put it down.
How much else will you carry?
How much else will you want to carry?
How much else will you be able to carry?
Are you going to be texting while carrying 300 pounds of rough wood?
Are you going to be walking aimlessly when you have the rough wood scratching and tearing into your skin?
Are you going to be focused knowing that you have others relying and counting on you to carry that uncomfortable and heavy chunk of wood up a hill?
Will you give up or will you give it your all?
It takes a man, a true strong tough resilient determined man’s man to carry a cross.
As men, our whole purpose is to carry our cross and follow after Jesus.
It is not easy. It may not fun.
But it is our purpose.
It is our reason.
It is our fulfillment.
So take up your cross and follow Jesus.
This requires us to reorganize our life.
This requires us to lay aside things that do not matter and focus on our purpose. To focus on our priority.
To make becoming a man of GOD, to be a man after GOD our priority.
To be the man that GOD needs us to be so that we can do what GOD needs us to do.
To be the man and husband that our wife needs.
To be the man and father that our kids need.
To be the man, friend, and neighbor that the church and our community need.
No, it’s not easy to take up a cross.
No, it’s not easy to carry a cross.
But that is why Jesus told us to do it.
Because doing the easy things does not make us better.
Doing the tough things makes us better.
The things that challenge us make us better.
Do the tough things.
Know what matters.
Know what your priority is!
Take up your cross and follow JESUS!
Then He said to them all, “If anyone wants to come after Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. What is a man benefited if he gains the whole world, yet loses or forfeits himself? – Luke 9:23-25