Cross Bearing


Then, calling the crowd to join his disciples, he said, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me.”

~Mark 8:34, NLT


“Jesus” never comes next; He is always before and above.

~Chriswell Freeman

The Roman Empire was built on law and order. The Romans prosecuted criminals through a court system. The law breakers did get trials but they were speedy and so were the sentences pronounced. As a deterrent to violent crime, the Romans crucified offenders who were not Roman citizens. They crucified over 35,000 Jewish men.  It was a horrible way to die. The victims of this awful ordeal would hang on the cross for days. They longed for death but the executioners would not show them mercy; they let them suffer. A part of the ritual was the law breaker having to take his own cross to the place of crucifixion. When Jesus made the statement, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me,” His followers knew exactly what He meant. Steve Green, the MK who turned singer, did a song that always moved me. It was called EMBRACE THE CROSS.

Embrace the cross
Where Jesus suffered
Though it will cost
All you claim as yours
Your sacrifice will seem small
Beside the treasure
Eternity can’t measure
What Jesus holds in store

What we are talking about is an EXCHANGED LIFE. We lay down our life for Jesus sake and in return, He gives us our true life, which we could never experience a part from the death of our old life. For the new to emerge, the old has to die. I did not grow up dreaming  or longing to be a preacher. A few years into the ministry {pastoring churches} and I was ready to do something else, evangelism, missions, anything but pastor a church. God, in His marvelous grace, kept nudging me little by little into complete surrender. All I can say now, is praise the LORD for his overwhelming grace. In giving up the life that I had hoped for; Jesus gave me a new and better life, one beyond all my dreams. At one time, being the pastor of a church seemed like the ultimate sacrifice but looking back, I realize it is the ultimate dream.


I tried to get a lot done during those beautiful days we had last week. I went can to can’t but I did not get all done that I hoped to. I did work much harder than I am accustomed to working and I was tired by the weeks end. Thank God for a sabbath.

Well, we can add another to our prayer list: Pray for Gregg Holladay; he got an unpleasant diagnosis last week and it having a PET scan tomorrow {if I have my info right}. Pray for Gregg and Tracy. They already had a plate full with Sarah being sick. Continue to pray for Becky and Terry. Saw Terry Saturday morning. He was awake and we had prayer. Pray for Big Mama, she has had a back set of some sort. She isn’t doing well. Remember our MISSION TEAM in Guatemala, they fly home on Wednesday. I bet Spencer has worked Teddy to death.

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