|photo by Bonita Y. McCoy|
"Then he (Jesus) said to them all:'Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take their cross daily and follow me.'" Luke 9:23
When I was a little girl, I used to experience growing pains in my legs. I'm not sure why since I stopped growing at five foot one. From the pain at times, I thought I'd grow to be six feet. Sometimes when it was bad, my mom would rub my calves to help sooth the ache.
As Christians, we experience growing pains as well.
The call by Jesus to "deny ourselves" and "follow him" lends to growth in our spiritual character.
When we show kindness instead of venting anger or we share instead of taking, we grow. That's how God's economy works. You deny yourself; you grow. You give; you get more. You give away your life; you save it. You surrender; you have victory.
By denying ourselves, we give the Holy Spirit the opportunity to grow the fruits of the spirit in us, to make us more like Christ.
However, it's hard, and sometimes, it can be painful, like when we feel all used up or heavy-hearted with the burdens of others that we are praying for.
Here is hope; we are not in this alone. We are yoked together with Jesus who makes our burdens light. He, like my mother, will sooth the ache of our growing pains and help us to come out stronger and more like him.
Challenge: Ask God for growth in one area. He will empower you!
Finding God's Beautiful Grace,