John 13:15–17 (nlt)
I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you. I tell you the truth, slaves are not greater than their master . . . Now that you know these things, God will bless you for doing them.
Luke 9:23 (nlt)
Then he said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me.
Matthew 10:38-39 (nlt)
If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine. If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it.
Lord Jesus, these seem like hard words to our self-centered nature. We’ve spent so much time getting things backwards with you; we’ve been so influenced by our me-centered culture. We need your divine revelation Lord. Show us the truth, open our eyes, give us your heavenly perspective.
You’ve given us the example to follow; we’ve seen you do nothing but laydown your life. Though you are God, you took on the role of a humble servant. But Jesus, you are Lord. You are the absolute Lord, and we are your slaves by choice, your bond-slaves. Don’t let us get it backward. Slaves are not greater than their master, and we are not here to be served by you, but to serve you.
Help me Lord to be a doer and not a hearer only of these words. I choose to turn from my self-focused ways, please give me the Holy Spirit power to back up my choice. Lord Jesus, I choose to take up my cross today, and follow you, to follow your example of laying down your life, of being a servant, of seeking only to do the will of the Father. I choose to take up the symbol of death to self, and follow you today.
Your word is clear Lord, and frightful. If I refuse to live as dead to self and dead to the world, if I refuse to take up my own cross and follow your example, then I am not worthy of being yours. Help me to not re-write these words, but to respond correctly to them.
And help me to know Lord, that your command is so that I can find life, true life, abundant life, eternal life. This command is to give me true life. I need your heavenly perspective Lord. If I cling to this life, I will lose not only what I cling to, but also my life with you. But if I willingly give up this life for you, I will find true life, real life. The result will be abundant life now, and eternal life forever with you. Help me to see the truth clearly Lord. I choose to follow you daily. Please give me your power to do so. In your name and for your sake, amen.
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