“If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. Mark 8:34”
Many years ago, I was awaken out of a sound sleep to a voice saying to me ‘Come, follow Me.’ Although it has been over 25 years ago, I can still remember that voice as if it were only yesterday. Come, follow Me.
As I heard that statement, I said ‘Lord, what does that mean?’ And He said to me; ‘I only do what I hear the Father say to do and I only say I what I hear the Father say.’
Since that day, that has been my goal and purpose, although at many times I have fallen short, I know the key to walking like Jesus walked is to do and say what the Father says do and say.
I have found in life that for most people it is easier to react in the flesh than to respond in a godly manner. For most Christians, we react in the flesh and then God convicts us and we repent and make it right. It seems to be the same cycle over and over.
I have written before on being critical and it seemed to hit a nerve with many people, just as it had with me. God is not trying to beat us over the head with things we are doing wrong, it is quite the opposite, He desires us to come up higher, to come, follow Jesus. That’s the purpose for His correction. I personally love when He corrects me and I respond correctly, it means I am growing and things, good things, are being produced in my life.
I have learned in my own life to embrace the challenges that come my way. Instead of fighting against the process, I have learned to lean into God and allow Him to work things out of me.
You know, I don’t care who it is that is rubbing you the wrong way or irritating you – they are not the one with the problem, you are. How can I say that? Because if you were following Jesus’ example, you wouldn’t react regardless of what they did. You will be slow to anger and quick to forgive, right?
I have found that whoever angers me, controls me. They literally control my life, think about it, is there someone who is constantly making you mad? If so, and you continue to allow it, they are dominating your life. Take the power out of their hands and instead respond as Jesus would. Let it roll right off you like water off a ducks back.
I continue to believe that this is one of the greatest years in history, I believe we will see things of God that we have only dreamed about. I believe His glory will fill this whole earth and His wonders will be seen. I do believe this is a time for new beginnings for many, for those who choose to embrace this time. However, to see these wonderful things, I also believe we have to do exactly what Jesus said to me that night many years ago, come, follow Me.
I know it may sound silly, but just try this, before you react in anger or react to a situation wrong – stop!!!!!!! Wait a few minutes. Then respond. The world is not going to end if you simply stop and breathe for a moment and it may save you from saying something you will regret and have to repent for.
Words are powerful, they can’t be taken back, just like you can’t unscramble eggs, once the words are out there, they are out there. You can ask someone to forgive you for angry words, but you can’t always undo the damage, remember that before you speak.
Jesus wants so much more for us, He died to give us so much more than we walk in each day. The fullness of Him. He died that we could walk in the same power and authority that He did, we only have to do one thing, Come, follow Him.