The Church today has become so overfed with motivational and prosperity messages that, her members no longer consider the ‘Cross’ as a part of their lot.
What a pity!!!!!!!!!
Whether we like it or not, suffering: trials, tribulations, persecutions etc will continue to remain with us till ‘thy kingdom come’. Christians are followers of Christ, or people who walk in the steps of Christ so if the cross was part of his walk, then it certainly will be part of ours. In Matthew 16:24, Jesus says to his disciples: Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. Similar statements in Luke 9:23, Mark 8:34.
As no man is awarded a doctorate degree without a thesis, so no man qualifies to be called a true Christian who dodges the cross. there is no turning from it, there is no going around it. We must confront it, carry it like a burden and endure it.
Christ himself says in Matthew 10:38:
Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me.
If you aren’t worthy of Christ, then you aren’t worthy to bear his surname either. Apostle Peter says in 1 Peter 2:21:
To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. It is that simple. If the master suffered then we must need suffer it too. Of course our Lord promises a better life for us because he paid our what we couldn’t pay ourselves but that doesn’t exempt us from the cross.
In James 1:2, we are admonished to ‘Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds. Why so??? Because it is an opportunity to share in the blessings of Christ and if ‘we suffer (with Him), we shall also reign with Him; but if we deny Him he shall also deny………2Timothy 2:12. Again in 1Peter 1:6, Peter tells the believers:
In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.
Then again, 1 Thes 3:3 (TEB), Paul says … None of you should turn back because of these persecutions. You yourselves know that such persecutions are part of God’s will for us. I believe this statement sums up the whole thing for us. Indeed as it is said in Hebrews 12:11, No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
We must learn to see the trials and troubles we encounter daily as mere disciplines and not punishment and let us learn to submit to them for He says,
He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. Revelations 3:21.
SHALOM my dear brethren!