Summary: How committed are you to the Lord?
Luke 9:23-And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
A man wrote to his girlfriend, "Susie, I love you so much. I would climb the highest mountain, cross the driest desert, sail the most tempestuous seas. See you Sunday if it doesn't rain."
In the world we live in, it seems like everything we get involved in, takes some kind of commitment from us, if you want to drive a vehicle, then you have to be willing to commit the next 4 or 5 years of your pay check into car payments, if you want a cell phone, then you have to commit 2 years of monthly bills, if you want watch cable, you have to sign a contract, if want to go to college, you have to commit 2,4, or 8 years of your life, and years after that paying off school loans, if want a house, then 30 or 40 years, a marriage, then it’s a lifetime commitment!
And while some people have trouble committing to something or somebody, then there are others who sign their life away on contracts so they can have stuff.
It looks like we would be use to commitment, since it is in nearly area of our life, yet when God ask this of us, we began to backtrack!
That is why so many leave the church, it is because there is no real commitment there!
It is one thing to leave a church and go to another church, sometimes that happens.
But what is bothersome is when people leave a church and they don’t go no where!
God wants from His followers is real commitment!
A hen and the hog were walking down the street and came to a church with a sign outside. "Help the needy." They started to talk about it. Hen: "I know how we could help. We could give them ham and eggs for breakfast." The hog was horrified: "That's okay for you. For you it's only a contribution, but for me it's total commitment."
But most people only want God when they want something or when it’s convenient, just like in Jesus’ day, the crowds followed Him because He healed them or feed them.
But Jesus is more interested in quality than quantity!
If He wasn’t He wouldn’t have said some of things He said, John 6:54-Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.
Luke 14:26-“If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.
This is no way to speak to win friends and influence people!
But He wanted real people, genuine people, committed people! And He still does!
Vance Havner use to say, “If wife is 85 percent faithful, would you consider her to be faithful?”
Cross-When you picked up your cross in Jesus’ day, it meant you were going to die, no one came off the cross until they were dead! Not even Jesus!!!
For the Christian to take up our cross means we are to die to our self.
No longer is life about what we want, but it should be about what God wants!
No longer is life about our will, but it should be about God’s will!
This taking up our cross is not just when feel like, it’s not just after we had a mountain top experience or been motivated by a sermon, this taking up the cross is daily!!!
Pliny the Elder, was a Roman writer who lived during the same time period as Jesus. He told a story of the setting of an monument , which when erect would stand 99 feet tall.
Twenty thousand workers where chosen to pull on the ropes and activate the hoisting apparatus. There was great responsibility and risk in the operation. Just one error could cause the monument to fall, ruining years of work.
The King demanded one act which insured the complete attention and best direction of the engineer. He ordered the engineer’s own son to be strapped to the monument, so that his heart as well as his head would be given to the task.
If our children’s lives depend on our Christian walk with Lord, you think we would be more committed?
Well it does, if we want our kids to walk with Lord, they have to see commitment from us to the Lord!!