One of the most powerful and compellingly clear verses in God’s Word leaves no room for misinterpretation about what Jesus was telling us to do…
“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” Mark 8:34
The old self runs away from money. The old self runs away from this world’s pleasures. The old self avoids disgrace, discomfort, dishonor, or degradation.
The new self chases Jesus and avoids anything that thwarts the ability to serve God and do his will.
Denying self, put simply, is saying no to me and yes to God.
WHAT DOES THAT LOOK LIKE?
When we get hurt our natural reaction is to fight back and “get even.” Denying self subdues that urge by focusing on the path to discipleship and doing God’s will, not mine. We have died to that “right” by praying for God’s will to be done, not my will.
Remember, God forgave us! (Ephesians 4:32).
I ask God to remind me when I am trying to avoid discomfort and abuse and pain. To give me the strength to say no to self and yes to him. To guide me toward his plan for my life.