Matthew 16:24-25

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”

 The Bible doesn’t tell us the Christian walk will be easy. In fact, it tells us the world will hate us because of Jesus (John 15:18). Not exactly a great selling point, is it? Somewhere along the way we have bought into the belief that because we are Christians we should be coasting through life, running through fields of sunshine and daisies. But this is dangerous thinking.

I have quite a few friends who have turned away from God simply because he didn’t take away their pain in a tough situation. But again, God never said it would be easy, though he did promise to be with us to the end of this age (Matt. 28:20). He tells us if we wish to follow Him we have to take up our cross. Dying on a cross was the most painful way to die, yet God is saying we need to pick up an instrument of torture and follow him.

So what will you do? Will you choose the Christian walk even when life gets painful or will you drop God off at the first sign of trouble? I promise you choosing Jesus is choosing abundant life, even when it gets hard. It’s a life that will be full of Him and I can’t think of anything better.

QUESTION 1. Do you find your Christian walk hard sometimes?
QUESTION 2. Have you ever been in the midst of a painful situation and wondered where God was?
CHALLENGE: God is always there in your pain, holding you and giving you strength. Pray that God would use your tough situation to grow you or to help someone else. Pick up your cross, and your pain, and follow Him.
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