What good is this life? It’s tiring, even disheartening to be caught in the midst of a culture of pragmatic disacknowledgement of sin and value. We live surrounded by the fallout from the actions of non-believers and other believers alike. We invest ourselves into deep doctrine and precise discussions with other believers. We survey culture and comment to each other about the downfall of society and the decline of the church.
We invest ourselves in good things. But any spiritual discipline or doctrine held to the exclusion of another has the potential to become heresy.
We’ve spent portions of the last few weeks discussing some of these issues. And they will continue to come up. Now let’s begin to look at what we can do about it.
It’s time to take it up to Jesus
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
1 Peter 5:6-7
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
It’s time to take up our collective crosses
Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it.
- What was a cross historically?
- What is your cross?
- What does it mean to deny yourself and take up your cross?
- How does this denial and cross-taking benefit us?
It’s time to take it up to the least
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
It’s time for us to step up – disciple and be discipled
- When does discipleship begin?
- When does discipleship end?
- What is the goal of discipleship?
- For those discipled
- For those discipling
Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”
Then Judas (not Judas Iscariot) said, “But, Lord, why do you intend to show yourself to us and not to the world?”
Jesus replied, “If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. He who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.