Jesus was never really concerned with popularity. Am I?
Jesus did not call his disciples to popularity he called them to die. This is the heart of discipleship. To be a disciple is to be a follower. To follow Jesus means to take the path of suffering and death. “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me.” (Luke 9:23)
How do you make the concept of death and suffering pop? How do we make these ideas sizzle? Do inmates on death row have swagger?
We live in a culture that worships success. It is said that if something is to be “successful” it must “sell itself. But death does not sell itself. It cannot. We cannot make the life of Christ into something sexy. Something attractive for attractions sake. No. The first thing the would be follower of Jesus Christ is confronted with is the absolute and total command of Jesus Christ to die to everything but Jesus Himself.
The call to discipleship is a lonely call. Is a hard call. Is an absurd call. It’s the call to die. So will you follow Jesus when it’s not that popular? Will you follow him to the cross? Will you continue to live out, in the mundane and difficult moments of life, the calling of Jesus. Will you follow him even without the accolades?
Jesus is not looking for a marketing team, for men and women who can make Christianity sizzle. He is looking for followers who are willing to die in order to experience life to the fullest.
Why is it hard to follow Jesus in walking away from the crowds rather than embracing them?
What does it mean to bear our cross (death) daily in the context and comfort of America?