Luke 9:23 - How To Follow Jesus.

Luke 9:23 - How To Follow Jesus.

Luke 9:23 (NLT) Then he said to the crowd, "If any of you wants 
to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up 
your cross daily, and follow me.  

Following Jesus requires a total commitment to turn from selfish 
ways (Mark 8:34-35). Taking up one's cross is a metaphor for giving 
up one's life to follow Jesus even to death, as illustrated by 
Jesus' crucifixion... It requires entrusting one's life entirely to Jesus 
(Mark 5:34) [One Year NLT SB re Mark 3] 

   To follow Jesus, sooner or later we must submit our wants and 
desires to his desires for us. We must stop serving ourselves and start 
serving him. If that means selling something, we sell it. If it means 
stopping a certain behavior, we stop it. If it means doing something we 
don't want to do, we do it. It means the end of what we want and the 
beginning of what Jesus wants. That is why Jesus says, "If you try to keep 
your life for yourself, you will lose it" - because only by giving it 
up to Jesus can you gain eternal life.  
   Is it worth it? If you have any doubt, Jesus makes a good 
case for doing so: "What do you benefit if you gain the whole world 
but are yourself lost or destroyed?" (Luke 9:25). Sure, there's a 
price to be paid for following Jesus, but those who pay it also 
receive an eternal benefit. [The One Year Through the Bible Devotional 
by Dave Veerman re Luke 9:18-21, 23-25] 

   We can't really experience His Presence until we let go of 
ourselves. Jesus was clear that no one can serve two masters. He said so in 
the context of money, but the truth applies to all relationships. 
Though our desires and His often overlap and our agendas and His often 
align, we have to choose which drives the other. In this relationship 
between human and divine, one has to take the lead. And it needs to be 
   Some people try to crucify their personality along with all 
their gifts and desires, as though God wants the relationship to be 
all of Him and none of us. But if God wanted that, why did He create 
us to begin with? He already experienced having "none of us." No, 
it's our self-direction and search for self-fulfillment that need to 
go to the Cross. We can't follow Him or know His Presence until 
they do. But if we're able to let go - to allow our agendas to bow to 
His - we can know Him deeply and experience Him fully. He picks up 
those who have let go. And He fills the empty spaces of those who give 
Him room.  
   Jesus, I want to follow You fully, and I know that means I 
need to let go of being preoccupied with myself. Help me fully focus 
on You and Your Kingdom - to be totally preoccupied with Your 
purposes. Let me experience You to the degree I follow You. [The One Year 
Experiencing God's Presence Devotional by Chris Tiegreen re Mark 8:34] 


   I designed you to live in union with Me. This union does not 
negate who you are; it actually makes you more fully yourself. When you 
try to live independently of Me, you experience emptiness and 
dissatisfaction. You may gain the whole world and yet lose everything that really 
   Find fulfillment through living close to Me, yielding to My 
purposes for you. Though I may lead you along paths that feel alien to 
you, trust that I know what I am doing. If you follow Me 
wholeheartedly, you will discover facets of yourself that were previously 
hidden. I know you intimately - far better than you know yourself. In 
union with Me, you are complete. In closeness to Me, you are 
transformed more and more into the one I designed you to be. (Mark 8:36; 
Psalm 139:13-16; 2 Corinthians 3:17-18) [Jesus Calling by Sarah 


If we are Christ's, our thoughts are with Him, and our sweetest 
thoughts are of Him.  All we have and are is consecrated to Him.  Let's 
thank Jesus this month for all that He has done for us.  Let us seek 
to bear His image, breathe His spirit, do His will, and please Him 
in all things.  Pastor Arthur Gibbs 




Importance of Choice: 
http://creationhealth.com/CREATION-Health/Choice [click on video]  

Seeking God Made Real: http://vimeo.com/31489782

Musical Devotional On Christian Living: 


Lifting Up Jesus Bible Studies: http://www.liftingupjesus.net/

Amazing Facts Bible Studies: 

Discover Bible Studies: http://studies.itiswritten.com/discover/


The Last Day of Prophecy by Pastor Doug Batchelor: 
[March 21-26, 2016: Charlotte, NC in person with live streaming 
and multiple outreach locations] 

Revelation Today by Pastor John Bradshaw: 

Prophecies Decoded by Pastor Ron Clouzet: