Sixteenth Sunday after Pentecost
September 8, 2013
Carrying a cross
It would surely feel like standing on holy ground. Imagine walking with Jesus and being so near that he could simply turn to say the challenging words to you: “Whoever doesn’t carry the cross and follow me can’t be my disciple.”
Carrying a cross is surely a burden. Jesus literally carried a heavy wooden beam and then gave himself upon it as a sign of love for the entire world. If we are to be disciples, we will also carry some heavy burdens that provide signs of love for the world. What cross are you being called upon to carry? Here are a few suggestions for contemplation.
Write a kind, encouraging letter. Now that seems pretty easy, but what if the letter were addressed to someone you believe doesn’t like you at all? What if you were willing to risk carrying the burden of knowing they might ridicule you or refuse your overture of kindness? What if . . . ?
Volunteer to help at a local food bank. Again, not so hard, but if your life is as busy as many others, this may be a real burden. Is it yours to carry for a season?
Guard the reputation of another person. The temptation of engaging in gossip couched in a cloak of concern is very real. Controlling one’s words when juicy bits of information become known may be your cross to carry. And it’s not easy to do.
Look for an injustice and work to change it. Jesus taught the disciples to pray “on earth as it is in heaven.” We look around and see much that is less than heavenly. How can you take up that cross and carry it?
As you follow in the way of Christ’s disciples, may you feel the holy ground beneath your feet this day.
Wanda Veldman, pastor, Veedum Moravian Church and United Church of Christ of Pittsville, Wisconsin