What does it take to be a follower of Jesus? Many would think that accepting Christ as your Lord and savior is all it takes.
Others would think that maybe after that it would cost you a Sunday morning service and if you are really sacrificial, a Wednesday night bible study and an occasional kesha would seal the deal.
Jesus tells us what it will cost us to be counted as his disciple and there are no two ways about it.
Becoming a follower of Jesus is no cheap venture. In Mark 8 Vs 31 to 33 Christ tells us that it will cost Him His life. He would have to die and rise again, that’s what it would cost Him for us to be His followers.
As for you and I, we also have a part to play. Vs 34 says we have to deny ourselves. There are no two ways about it. To be considered a follower of Christ you have to accept that it is not about you and you are to live the rest of your life the way Christ wants you to.
It is no longer about what you want but what he wants. What is the content of your prayers? Is it always about what you want God to do for you or are you always asking Him what He wants with you?
After you have denied yourself, you have to pick up your own cross daily and follow Him. The cross is an instrument of death. It is a place where the flesh dies. We have a choice to make daily to place our flesh on the cross. Not only are we to do that, we are also to follow Him.
To do that, we have to maintain close proximity and relationship with Him. For us to follow Him it means He is moving and we have to move with Him just like the Israelite’s being guided by the pillar of fire and cloud in the wilderness.
They only moved when the pillar moved. We should place more importance on our relationship with Him than we do on our lives. If we lose our lives for his sake and the gospel, He promises us that we shall gain it back.
On the other hand if we are selfish thinking only about ourselves and what we went hanging on to our life, then we will lose it. To crown it all, we are to testify and tell others about Christ and all he has done for us.
If we are ashamed of Him and His message, then He will be ashamed of us when He returns. That is what it will take for an individual to be considered as a follower of Christ.
How do you rate? Are there adjustments you need to make!
Being a follower of Christ is a full package. May we continually rate ourselves against the standard that Christ has set for us lest we become confident in the flesh!
(34) 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. (35) If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it. (36) And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? (37) Is anything worth more than your soul? (38) If anyone is ashamed of me and my message in these adulterous and sinful days, the Son of Man will be ashamed of that person when he returns in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”