24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 25 For whoever wants to save their life[f] will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. 26 What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done. Matthew 16:24-27.
To follow Jesus Christ means that we are willing to lay down our lives. Now this doesn’t mean that we are all going to end up being martyrs. There are those who are losing their physical lives for the name of Jesus and we must pray and intercede for them daily. But to lay down our lives for the sake of Jesus Christ means that we are laying down our will and making God’s will the driving force of our lives.
Jesus called us to seek first His kingdom and His righteousness. This world and its ways are in opposition to the will and kingdom of God. As followers of Jesus Christ we are called to be in the world but not of the world. Our lives should not reflect the desires of the world or be driven by the lust of the sinful nature. As believers in Jesus Christ we should be led by the Holy Spirit in all things. This only comes as we spend time alone with the Lord each day in His presence through prayer and the study of God’s word. As we read and meditate upon God’s word our lives are transformed from the inside out by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus is returning soon for His bride and all those who diligently prepare through developing deep intimacy with the Lord will be ready when the trumpet sounds. All around us we see the signs that Jesus spoke of that would mark His soon return. Let us simply seek Him with our whole heart and be willing to lay down our lives for the sake of His kingdom and His glory. When we give our hearts to Jesus Christ our lives are no longer our own.