Daily Office Readings for Saturday of Proper 27: Year 1
Morning, Psalms 87 and 90; Evening, Psalm 136;
1st Maccabees 2:1 to 28; Revelation 20:1 to 6; Matthew 16:21 to 28:
“Then Jesus told his disciples, ‘If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it.” (Matthew 16: 24 and 25)
It’s pretty challenging to put down the words of what our Lord Jesus said in a different language, and some forty years after he has died, raised, and ascended back to the realm of the Creator. I think he knew that if he kept up the practice of the love of God for all people, the people themselves would kill him. However, I see the cross that we should take up is more a metaphor for us to accept whatever burdens are put upon us and at the same time, faithfully and lovingly, do the best we can in this life with the Lord’s help.
We follow our Lord Jesus by not going along with evil, and even in the presence of evil, we must show love. We follow our Lord Jesus by practicing that same love of God for all people as Jesus himself did. There is a pretty good chance that in most places today Christian practitioners will not be killed because of their faith as Jesus and his early followers were. Remember, I said most places. There are still some hateful places left on the planet. Where we are free to worship and extend love to all, we must keep in prayer those people and places that challenge the love of Christ. Today is a good day to start. Today is a good day to take up whatever your cross looks like and follow Christ.
How is your Sabbath going?
As we listen to what the Spirit is saying to us, let us live to love, to serve, and to teach, while pondering anew what the Almighty can do. John