If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves
and take up their cross and follow me.
- Mark 8:34
They are not simply trials or hardships. ... A cross is a choice. We take up our cross when we walk in Christ’s steps and embrace His life, which means extending ourselves in difficult circumstances for the sake of the gospel. At times, that may mean lifting high the cross of Christ in the public square. At other times, it may mean embracing weakness instead of power.
... The apostle Paul and the first followers of Jesus did not win the world to Christ through sword and power but through service and witness. ... The sign of the church’s true power is not in the heights of our cathedral spires, but in the depths of our loving and sacrificial service. It is in and through our weakness, empowered by the Holy Spirit, that the church finds its power to conquer violence and death.
What cross are you being asked to bear, and will you take it up?