Matthew 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me.
Following Jesus Christ entails a total readiness to do His will in all aspects. It is a decision that angers Satan because he knows that he stands to be exorcised and all that he represents. By this singular decision to repress his will power and to set his spiritual baggages to ruin, he would want to implore all possible means to run down such an individual. Notwithstanding, its a win to those who are ready to give their all to God.
Let us examine ‘deny self’ which Jesus Christ told us about, it is making up your mind to do away with everything that could obstruct the presence of God. Certain pleasurable things that pertaineth to the world are done away with as they never have any place in side of God just as it is written in James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
So we must focus and put aside every wordly distractions and be ready to walk by His commands.
‘Take up your cross’
The cross is an instrument for sacrifice, an emblem of shame, rejection and dejection. Alot goes along with taking up your cross as you might stand to suffer many things just as Jesus Christ took up His cross and was sacrificed on it while he was beaten, spat on, whiped, mocked and shamed by those he came to save. But there is nothing to panic about or do we stand to loose anything because the Word of God tells us in 2Corinthians 4:16-18 For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.
For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;
While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
When believers take up their cross, they are to mortify the deeds of the flesh (dying to self), kill the flesh and every of its yielding to wrongs and be fully committed to doing only the things which pleases the Lord and this leads us to ultimately ‘following Jesus Christ’, having a total ready mind to do only those things that pleases Him, obeying and standing in his promises and looking up to attaining eternal life.
Father I thank you for your word today, Lord i ask that You give me the ability do aways with all that is covenanted in the flesh and help me to embrace only those things which are right in your sight in Jesus Christ Holy name Amen.