Every day I face a choice: to pick up my cross and follow Jesus or to not pick up my cross and to not follow Jesus… Wait… I am already baptized, I have consumed Jesus Christ, I have confirmed my faith and accepted Jesus as my savior. So why do I face this choice? I have already given my life to God, so there is no need for me to make a choice every day. That choice has been confirmed, and I have handed my cross to God. There’s no taking it back.
It’s like acting like I still have a cross when God has already died and carried the cross all the way to death. He destroyed the cross so I wouldn’t have to bear it – so why try to bear it, when this cross has been defeated and ceases to exist? How has something so simple slipped my mind? That “choice” was not just confirmed when I went though the sacrament of confirmation but when Jesus freely died for me 2000 years ago.
I keep saying this again and again because as Catholics we fail to believe and accept it. We are blinded with “choices” that the enemy throws to us. We are blinded with “what if’s”: “What if I was rich?”… “What if I was popular?”…”What if I had control?”…”What if I had this or that?”
We have Mass every single day! Before we come eat of this eternal bread of life, we always proclaim at Mass, “Save us savior of the world, for by your cross and resurrection, you have set us free!” FREE!!… Don’t you get it?
Maybe you do, but then why do we go back to our old ways? Sins become habits and we sin over and over again and feel unworthy and guilty when we do. Why don’t we run back to God, who is our savior and has set us FREE? We treat ourselves as if we have never been forgiven… We act as if Jesus never died for us.
Over and over again we hear throughout the Bible: “Repent! The Kingdom of God is at hand!” Don’t you get it? Brothers and sisters, YOU are God’s kingdom, and your soul is at hand!! The devil tries to distract us and pull us away from God, but it is not your possessions that are at hand, not your job, not your hobbies, and not your time: your salvation is at hand!!
Brothers and sisters, I don’t mean to come hard, but at the same time, I do! Your soul is at hand and we forget that we are made for more! When Jesus says to pick up our cross, He doesn’t mean pick up our sins or pick up our doubts or pick up our struggles! He means, pick up this mentality that we have control, this mentality of “I’m a sinner,” of “I’m unworthy.” Pick up your LIFE (everything that you are), pick up your heart, pick up your soul, and follow Him! For He will give you eternal life!
I know that I belong to Christ! I know I am free in His love! I know that everything God has is mine, that God has given me the keys to His Kingdom, the keys to LOVE, the keys to ETERNITY! I know that God gave me not only the “choice”… He gave me FREEDOM!! The freedom to live with Him, through Him, and in Him!
He made you a son or daughter of God! You are His creation! You are His image! You are His love! You are His Kingdom!! AND YOU ARE FREE!!