Day 1: Following Christ Through His Last Days

Today begins our 21 day journey to follow Christ through his last days. We are so glad you are here! We will post the scripture readings each day on our Facebook Page, but you may also Shadow of the Cross Reading List & Journal Page download our reading list. A huge shout out of appreciation to Stephanie K Adams with Real Women Ministries for developing this study’s reading list.

Let’s begin in prayer.

Lord,
We thank you for your Word. Truth spilled out in love to guide us closer to You. Help us slow down a little each day. Help us drink in your last days, maybe even picture ourselves as one of the twelve reclining with you, learning from you, and preparing for what you will ask us to do. You have called us all to be disciples. Help us faithfully follow You every day.
Amen

Grab your Bible and a journal and let’s begin.

Click here>>>>> Shadow of the Cross Reading List & Journal Page to print reading list.



Day One: Take Up Your Cross and Follow Me
Matthew 16:24-25
Mark 8:34-35
Luke 9:23-24

  • Read the scriptures.
  • Write them in your journal.
  • Underline things that standout. Circle similarities. Highlight differences.

In our scripture reading we find Jesus speaking to the disciples.

“If any of you wants to be my followers, you must run from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.” Matthew 16:24-25 NLT

Three things are requested:
1- Turn from your selfish ways.
2- Take up your cross.
3- Follow me.

As I compared each gospel account I noticed a few things that spoke to my heart or had me asking for more:

1- In each gospel account, verse 24 begins with the word “Then”. This word prompts us to look for what happened before this text. Interestingly, it is just before this that Jesus predicts His death and explains what will transpire. Place yourself in their shoes, after hearing that Jesus will give His life they are faced with Jesus’ request.

2- In Matthew it is noted that Jesus is speaking to His disciples. In Mark it is noted He also called the crowd to join His disciples, and in Luke we read He said these words to the crowd. Reading this helps us place ourselves right in the crowd being asked to turn, take up, and follow.

3- IF. This little word occurs repeatedly in our passages. It’s what we call a little word with big impact! Jesus wants us all to follow Him. He wants the very best for us. But it is a choice. A choice with great reward. It’s not worldly economics at all. We must give up to gain. The gain is forever profitable…eternal life. Giving up your life for Jesus daily saves your life for eternity.

Let us leave you with these thought questions from Real Women Ministries:

Following after Jesus will cost us something; as you prepare to read of Christ’s last days before the cross, what is your sacrifice?

How will you take up your cross and follow Him during the next 21 days of prayer and meditation of Christ’s sacrifice?

What is speaking to your heart in these verses? The comments are open for your reflection! We love hearing from you and we love when you invite friends to join us as we grow closer to God, verse by verse.

As a reminder, join us each day on our Facebook page to travel this road together. We are so glad to have you here!

Jodie