If you refuse to take up your cross and follow me, you are not worthy of being mine. If you cling to your life, you will lose it; but if you give up your life for me, you will find it. (Mat 10:38-39)*
Living sacrificially is a much-repeated theme in Scripture. Jesus spoke of it often and exemplified it in every aspect of His living and dying. Sacrifice means to…
Surrender or give up; to permit injury or disadvantage to for the sake of something (or someone) else.
Living like this is difficult. In fact, it is impossible without the empowerment of God! Yet, may I tell you that whatever I’ve had to give up for the Lord, He has always given me something better.
He has more than compensated me for any loss!
- When I lost my soulmate and was overwhelmed with loneliness, He gave me an extra sense of His presence.
- When I sacrificed time to take care of a declining mother, He furnished me with patience and understanding.
- When I lost my dear friend, Bea, He gave me a greater friendship with Him.
- With the loss of my home and garden, He counterbalanced with more time for Kingdom work.
- In relinquishing control of my ministry to Him, He has given me effectiveness and lasting fruit.
- In giving up time to read and study His Word, He has rewarded me with amazing insights to pass on to others—and much enjoyment along the way.
Whatever the cost, my Lord has more than made up for it. He has given me more than I ever dreamed possible.
Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I have put aside all else, counting it worth less than nothing, in order that I can have Christ, and become one with him…. (Phil 3:8-9)**
Besides, the sacrifice we have to pay is miniscule next to Christ’s. We have no idea the extent of our Savior’s humongous payment! Our cost simply doesn’t compare.
He was willing to die a shameful death on the cross because of the joy he knew would be his afterwards; and now he sits in the place of honor by the throne of God. (Heb 12:2)**
Jesus thought you were worth dying for! He viewed the value of redeeming you from hell far greater than the price He had to pay. Any pain of living sacrificially for His sake is worth the prize, and that prize is Christ Himself.
To have a greater:
- Sense of His presence
- Usefulness for His kingdom and
- Production of spiritual fruit.
That is worth it to me! The price is minute next to my gain. I pray it is for you as well, or that you’ll at least believe me enough to start living sacrificially. Not perfectly, mind you, but on that path. God’s enablement is available.
Friends, I can’t wait till heaven to talk with you about what your cost was/is to live for the Lord, and how He overcompensated you for your trouble. Actually, we can start telling each other now! Would you please leave a comment below? Myself and many others would be greatly encouraged to hear how the Lord has rewarded you.
Living Bible (TLB) The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
Picture of Muddy Falls in Md, taken by the author.