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Friends in Christ Weekly Message
[NOTE: This message was originally published March 15, 2003.]
March 3, 2012
He then began explaining things to them: "It is necessary that the Son of Man proceed to an ordeal of suffering, be tried and found guilty by the elders, high priests, and religion scholars, be killed, and after three days rise up alive." He said this simply and clearly so they couldn't miss it.
But Peter grabbed him in protest. Turning and seeing his disciples wavering, wondering what to believe, Jesus confronted Peter. "Peter, get out of my way! Satan, get lost! You have no idea how God works."
Calling the crowd to join his disciples, he said, "Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You're not in the driver's seat; I am. Don't run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I'll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to saving yourself, your true self. What good would it do to get everything you want and lose you, the real you? What could you ever trade your soul for?
"If any of you are embarrassed over me and the way I'm leading you when you get around your fickle and unfocused friends, know that you'll be an even greater embarrassment to the Son of Man when he arrives in all the splendor of God, his Father, with an army of the holy angels."
Mark 8:31-38 (Message*)
This is a longer passage than I usually use, and I won't provide much commentary on it. Read it carefully and prayerfully several times, and see how the Lord speaks to you through it. It provides much for us to reflect upon in self-examination.
Lord, I pray that each of us will put aside our own willfulness and ideas, and humbly follow as Christ leads. May we accept willingly whatever suffering and self-sacrifice comes from following Christ. May we never be embarassed about following the way of Christ, and be steadfast in the face of criticism and laughter at our seeming foolishness. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.
* The Message version © by Eugene H. Peterson.
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Document last modified on Saturday, 17-Mar-2012 19:31:31 EDT