In this week’s reading, we are reminded of the cost of being a disciple: …and anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple. Luke 14:27
Making sacrifice a priority is hard work, especially with important pressing schedules and busy lives building up and up and up. It’s very easy for these important commitments to take a back seat. You may feel like it just never ends!
Of course Jesus showed us the ultimate sacrifice – taking the punishment for our sins and being nailed to a cross. We are called to take up our cross in following Jesus, and with that comes sacrifice.
Don’t we long and yearn for our children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and what have you to be committed and serving Christians in the church? What is crucial is for this to be modelled to the kids, for it has been said, “It is not taught, it’s caught”.
When I was meeting with fellow recent clergy people in my region, our Bishop made this statement, “What we sacrifice and give up shows others what we deem is important and therefore we set to others what is priority”.
Children, and even others around us, are not going to understand that church is a priority if they see that we easily do not attend or serve for the sake of events and activities that pop up (this is exclusive of holidays and sickness). We live in a country where we have the absolute privilege of meeting together each week as brothers and sisters in Christ – as God’s family, one body in Christ Jesus.
How can we therefore model church priority to the children and others around us? Perhaps this may mean a change of schedule or excusing yourself for being late to or missing events. We can also encourage children in our families that church is a family day and this is when we gather – much like family dinner that is not to be missed.
What will we sacrifice, and what will we prioritise?