Friday, May 16, 2008

To Take up my Cross

This morning as my sister, Christie, and I were engaged in a conversation about our struggle with selfishness; these truths were revealed to us…

"For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?"
Matthew 16:24-26

Of Self-Denial
What does it truly mean to deny yourself?

The Botkin sisters have given a wonderful definition in their book So Much More,

“By self-denial, we mean something deeper than the usual meaning, “denying yourself things you want.” Rather, we mean “denying that you have a ‘self.’” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 tells us that we do not belong to ourselves, but have been bought with a price.”

Of course this is not conquered by merely forgetting we have a ‘self’, but it is through a transfer of this focus to those around us that we can truly begin to forget about ourselves.

In Harvey Newcomb’s book How to Be a Lady, he has given wise counsel concerning this topic,

“Keep self out of view, and show an interest in the affairs of others…it will tend to stifle selfishness in your own heart, and to cultivate disinterested feeling. Sympathize with others; enter into their feelings; and endeavor, in heart and feeling, to make their interest your own; so that there may be a soil for disinterested feeling to grow in.”

Of Taking up Ones Cross
"Now as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name. Him they compelled to bear His cross."
Matthew 27:32

We know from Matthew 16 that we have been commanded to deny ourselves and take up our cross. This picture didn’t truly become clear until I meditated on Matthew 27:32. Simon’s task of bearing the cross was not a comfortable walk; nor was it for his pleasure and enjoyment…it was for the sole purpose of serving Christ.

It was in sharing these revelations with Christie that she shared with me some insight on the other spectrum…
Putting ourselves in Simon’s shoes, there must have been pain and ridicule involved in carrying the heavy burden. But there must also have been an overwhelming sense of relief, knowing that the cross he carried was not meant for him. He would not have to pay the price of hanging on it…that was to be done by Christ.

The trials we face in life will inflict pain and may bring heavy burdens; but we must never forget that the cross we carry has already been conquered by Christ.

Thursday, May 8, 2008


With friends and family...

Desperate to get "the" shot!

What can we say?..we're easily amused!

Why not go for the venti?!

Our handsome body-guard!!!

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