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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Taking the Cross of Service

Dusty and I had the privilege of eating dinner with his pastor and his pastor's wife last night. We went over to their house and had steak, salad, baked potatoes, and chocolate cake. It was wonderful!! After dinner, we sat and talked for what must have been close to two hours! We talked about everything. His pastor made a statement that made me really stop and think. He talked about people gladly taking the cross of salvation, but denying and refusing to take up the cross of service. I had honestly never thought of that before. What he was saying is this: It is easy to accept the salvation that is offered through Jesus Christ and His finished work on Calvary's cross. That is an easy cross to take up. What is not so easy is taking up our cross of service to the Lord. Dying out to ourselves, our will, our wants and our desires and wholly following the Lord and HIS plan for our lives. Man is that a tough one!!!
I am guessing that I was really supposed to get this message this week, because it's amazing how many times I heard preachers reference this.
Sunday: Brother Max Alderman was preaching and referenced this scripture " Hebron therefore became the inheritance of Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenezite unto this day, because that he wholly followed the LORD God of Israel." Joshua 14:14. Caleb got his land that he wanted because he wholly followed the Lord (not just followed Him when it was convenient and easy).
Monday: Brother Bobby Roberson was preaching and told a story. He told about something that happened between him and a friend. He felt bad and went and apologized to that friend. His friend responded this way: (paraphrase) "If you hurt my feelings it is my own fault. I am supposed to have died out to self, and you cannot hurt something that is dead." WOW!! That is a tough one, but a good one to try to grasp!
And then yesterday Pastor Goodman made that statement about dying out to self and taking up the cross of service. I need to try harder to WHOLLY follow the Lord. I love the Lord so much and so often take HIS blessings for granted. I think I can try to do a little more for Him instead of just sitting back reaping the blessings. Thank you Lord for my salvation! Help me to serve you more!

"What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?

God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?

Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?

Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:

Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.

For he that is dead is freed from sin.

Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:

Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him.

For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.

Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.

Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.

For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.

What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.

Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?

But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you.

Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.

I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness.

For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness.

What fruit had ye then in those things whereof ye are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death.

But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life.

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. " Romans 6

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