Mark 8:34 happens to be one of my favorite Bible verses. This verse popped up at me before I was even a Christian while working on my adventure blog ‘The Adventurist”. A few years ago I wrote an article about a man who decided to take this verse literally. He built a large wooden cross and decided to carry it around the world. He would walk with this life-sized cross and preach to those that would listen. I am not sure that this was completely what was in mind when this verse was written, but God has still used this man to spread his word through the use of a single verse from the Bible.
This past week I put up an update on Facebook that simply said:
What does this mean?? “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” Mark 8:34
This has lead to an in-depth study and discussion on this very intriguing verse. We were all in agreement that “he must deny himself” means that we have to walk away from our own selfishness in order to follow Christ. What does it mean to “take up his cross”?
One of my favorite passages from The Bible revolves around Mathew 7:7-8:
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.”
We are told to ask, seek, and knock, for those things that we need. When we accepted Christ in our hearts as Lord and Savior–we had to SEEK a different way of life, KNOCK on Heaven’s door hoping that Christ would answer, and then ASK him for total forgiveness of our sins and for a new way of life. These aren’t merely words to inspire. These are words that hold certain truths not only in Christ, but in everyday life.
Life List. Cassie has been working towards getting her Professional Photography business off the ground. We have both been praying for this. She has wanted to be a photographer for a very long time. I told her to just get out there and do it. I designed her a website as a present, helped her pick out a professional photo lab, purchased her some business cards and got her going on one of her life’s dreams. We have all the tools in place to give her a go at this dream. Now she just needs some prayers and opportunity to open up to her. We concentrated on those. Two things happened this week. She booked her first PAID photo shoot and also volunteered to be the ‘Go-To’ photographer at church. The church had put a small piece in their weekly bulletin about how they needed a photographer. It took me a total of 5 minutes to hunt down the preacher and offer our services. To my knowledge, this is not a paid job, but it is a job of Christ. Something she can give back to the church that has come to mean so much to us. She is volunteering. My first sentence was ‘Life List’. This refers to my list of things that I would like to do or accomplish during my lifetime. We hear a lot about how church members should be giving back to their churches. How God says that everyone has a gift and it should be used for God’s Will. Cassie is doing that starting within the next couple of weeks. Likewise, I would like to be able to volunteer my own services for a church function. That is going on my lifelist, as well as volunteering at an outside source (United Way or some other organization). This past Sunday, Cassie made me proud. Not only did she stand up and take on this special duty with the church, but she is also excited about the opportunity to be able to do something that she loves. She is definitely some inspiration to me and continues to push me to be the better person I envision.
I have added another Christian blog to my blogroll. Jeff Warren’s LiveForgiven blog. Jeff Warren is the author of the same titled book, Live Forgiven, as well as a preacher. His blog looks to be an inspiration to countless people and his church, while also refreshing us all on what it is that God has done for us. Go check out his blog.