Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me.
Are you a Christ follower? Before you answer that question think about the words of Jesus here in Matthew 16:24. If any of you “want to” be my follower, you must give up your own way. What is your “want to”. Is it to follow in the footsteps of your Saviour and live a life like Him? Every believer needs to examine what their “want to” is in life. If you do not “want to” follow after Him, sadly then you would be considered a lukewarm believer. What does it take to be lukewarm? Simple, do little to nothing for the kingdom of God. If you take a hot cup of coffee, set it down and do nothing with it, it will turn lukewarm.
It is amazing to me how many believers who say they know Jesus, don’t really follow after Him according to His own words. What was the purpose of giving your life to Him if not to follow Him? Jesus said if you want to be His follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow Him. To give up your own way means to stop living life for you, the way you think you should live, and instead follow His example, living for Him. Jesus went to church. Many believers are not consistent at all in going to church. It is not about attending a service, but being equipped for the work of ministry. Learning how to give up your ways for His. Yet many have no problem living out their lives committed to other activities, but church is not one of them.
Jesus walked in love. Jesus did only what He saw the Father doing. Jesus said only what the Father wanted Him to say, and to summarize His life, He was focused on using His gifts and abilities to build God’s kingdom. How much of your time, money, and gifting’s are used to help build God’s kingdom? If we truly are “Christ Followers”, then we are taking the new life He gave us and using it to bring glory to God. Sad to say not everyone who just prayed a prayer and attends church now and then and gives occasionally to God’s work will hear, “Well done good and faithful servant”. If you are not giving up your way to follow His example, why then did you call upon Him to be the Lord of your life? To live a life that really will mean something in the end, you must have the “want to” to follow Him.