OK, that is hard to do. It does not sound every appealing. It sounds quite painful. Then why would we want to take up our cross? Because Jesus did. Jesus proclaims He is the way, the truth, and the life. If we want to be in heaven, then this is what we must do. And it is not just a one-time effort. In life we find there are many times where we take up our cross and even die on that cross. It is hard to love as Jesus did. Sometimes we must work with people who just do not like us. Then take up your cross and be a little kinder, a little more loving to them, even if they treat you as dirt. No, you do not let them step all over you, but you do not respond in kind to what they are doing. Take up your cross.
Why would you do this? Let us be honest. None of us wants to die. None of us wants to die on a cross. Jesus died on the cross because He loves us and wanted us to know that one day, we will rise with Him. We are not like Jesus. We need time to practice this taking up of our cross. We really need time to practice dying daily so that when we are to take that step into eternal life we respond with love and not fear. We can accept the death this world offers because we will know the reward we are to receive in eternal life. Every time we die to self, we rise to new life with Christ who lives within us. “What profit is there for one to gain the whole world yet lose or forfeit himself?”
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen