Moses stood up to the Pharaoh of Egypt and said, “Let my people go.” Abram and Sarai were willing to go to the land where God called them to go. Esther believed she was created for “such a time as this.” Gideon fought the enemy army with only 300 men. Joshua and Caleb went against the grain and chose to conquer the Promised Land. Nehemiah left behind his cushy palace job to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem.
Luke 9:23, “Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”
However, when it comes to Christian living today, we rather pursue those things that are comfortable. We don’t like to go outside our box. We find it easy to get situated doing the samo-samo. Find our Christian huddle and don’t venture far from it.
That’s exactly where I found myself just over a year ago. Our two teenage girls were struggling spiritually and my husband suggested that I start a teenage girl’s Bible study. Flat out I told him, “I don’t want to. Girls this age don’t want to listen to their mom!” Somehow he convinced me to pray about it and reluctantly I agreed. Over the next month, my heart began to soften to the idea.
Then, we looked at our crazy family calendar and realized that the only night we consistently had available was Friday night. That’s right, Friday night. Nobody wants to give up Friday night (not me, either)! As ridiculous as it sounded, Coby and I threw the idea out to our girls. I believe their response went something like this, “That is the stupidest idea you have ever had! No one will ever come!”
I guess that’s the “taking up your cross part.”
God’s ways are counter-intuitive to our own. My girls were right about one thing—no one would come unless we tried. We have to invite them.
Our first week we had 5 girls. That’s the smallest number in attendance that we’ve ever, EVER had. Now that is CRAZY! Two weeks ago we hit a record of over 30! These girls are the real risk takers. They are my heroes. They give up their Friday night. They come to study God’s Word. Then, they take it one step further and they become the hands and feet of Jesus, too. They are learning what it means “to follow Him.”
Are you listening? Will you be willing to “take up your cross and follow Him? Even if it means doing something that you don’t want to do?