Sunday, August 31, 2014

Take Up Your Cross

Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and undergo great suffering at the hands of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, "God forbid it, Lord! This must never happen to you." But he turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; for you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things."
Then Jesus told his disciples, "If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit them if they gain the whole world but forfeit their life? Or what will they give in return for their life?
"For the Son of Man is to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay everyone for what has been done. Truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom." Matthew 16:21-28

Take Up Your Cross

Today my faults seem to great
keep me from going out the door
I am flawed and embarrassed
I cannot longer bear this alone.

Once we seemed perfect and brilliant
now we are aged and wiser some
clearer in sight of our limitations
genuinely aware of the broken bits.

We are called to pick up the mess
following where he leads us
promising that we will not be alone
surrounded by others with great shame.

And we can revel in going out together
a broken mass of people loved beyond the faults
cherished as perfect, beloved and wanted
as we struggle through the world of need.

We will be made strong for the journey
given companions on our various ways
we will rest in the arms of a loving God
and our burdens will be lighter each day.

Lord of all power and might, the author and giver of all good things: Graft in our hearts the love of your Name; increase in us true religion; nourish us with all goodness; and bring forth in us the fruit of good works; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.

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