Cross Bearing

I ran across this great little story the other day and felt my readers would like it… enjoy.

A mother was preparing pancakes for her sons, Kevin, 5 and Ryan, 3. The boys began to argue over who would get the first pancake. Their mother saw the opportunity for a moral lesson.
“If Jesus were sitting here, He would say, Let my brother have the first pancake. I can wait.” Kevin turned to his younger brother and said, “Ryan, you be Jesus!”

Being “Jesus” is not role playing… but cross bearing. In so many ways I see myself like Kevin in that I would like to be Jesus when it is of benefit to me, but call me to a sacrificial life and I’m looking for an exit strategy. Perhaps my heart needs a fresh perspective or a complete overhaul.

 I’m capable of great things when all eyes are on me. But when the opportunities seem less than glamorous… like touching the leper (Mt 8:1-4), eating with the tax collectors (Lk 5:29-32), rebuking a city for their lack of repentance (Mt 11:20-24) or praying all night in a garden while waiting for a betrayer’s kiss (Lk 22:47-48)… these are things that stretch my capacity to endure. They require me to experience discomfort.

 Being like Jesus is the goal of all truly sincere Christians, yet our often overlooked responsibility to count the cost has made our understanding of discipleship seem very weak. Jesus called every follower that would aim to come after Him or emulate Him, to a lifestyle of cross bearing (Mt 16:24). Its not optional or secondary to the real message of enjoying the goodness of God.

This lifestyle of self denial is the Goodness of God.

 So as I ponder my uncomfortable choices this morning between frosted flakes and granola… I will refuse to let my growling stomach get in the way of offering the milk to my daughter first. There now wasn’t that sacrificial… I’m in trouble aren’t I?

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