An e-mail I recently received contained this quote from Thomas a Kempis,
“There will always be many who will love Christ’s heavenly kingdom, but few who will bear his cross.
Jesus has many who desire consolation, but few who care for adversity.
He finds many to share his table, but few will join him in fasting.
Many are eager to be happy with him; few wish to suffer anything for him….
Many are awed by his miracles, few accept the shame of his cross.”
I’m reminded of Solomon’s statement that there’s nothing new. This could have as accurately been written today as it was in the 15th Century. It seems the modern fascination with having all the blessings of God without actually taking up my/your own cross has been around a long time.
We’ve made the cross ornamental, when it should be a core identifier of who and whose we are.
We’ve turned it into a decoration to hang on our walls, instead of the self-sacrificing Way that we follow.
We’ve reduced the cross to jewelry.
He deserves better. If we are going to wear His name, we’re going to have to pick up our cross. We’re going to have to actually die to ourselves and live with a willingness to suffer for His sake.