I. The Journey

"Follow Me"

At the start of His public ministry, the Lord called His apostles with the words: "Follow Me". To follow Him faithfully always includes a share of His cross, with all its tribulations and blessings. The Christian looks beyond the human idea of the cross as an instrument of punishment and death and sees it as a call to love one another and to live a new life.

"Then He said to them all, 'If any want to become My followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow Me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for My sake will save it.'" (Luke 9.23-24)

Call of the Cross

The cross is a call to fulfill:
Beyond the bounds of selfishness;
Against the grain of one's own will --
To shrink the self with sheer kindness.

The call is to live love in whole:
To look past one's own want and need,
To reach out to another soul,
With kindness lived by word and deed.

The command is to persevere:
Believing mercy is for all,
Hoping against all angst and fear,
Strengthened by grace to live the call.

The Lord's call is to "follow Me":
He is love lived in perfection;
To learn from Him means faithfully,
To live love by imitation.

With firm resolve, the cross is held;
By grace and faith, love and life meld.

"For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God." (1 Corinthians 1.18)

Lord, strengthen my heart with a firm resolve to follow You and live out Your call to love as a faithful disciple. Amen.

(c) Paul Buis, 2009