Calling the crowd to join his disciples, he said, “Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to saving yourself, your true self. What good would it do to get everything you want and lose you, the real you? What could you ever trade your soul for?
Source: Mark 8:34-37 (The Message)
I love to believe something that isn’t true in the world of following Jesus. Of course it is sad. Many times I don’t even realize what I am doing. Jesus confronts me to make it real. Jesus cuts through all the cultural lies I hear and read all the time. I can’t help myself.
It is the trap of self-help. Our culture is one of “self-help” as a way to fix ourselves. How many thousands of self-help books are written every year? Amazon is currently listing over 600,000. Amazing.
Shocking news alert. I can’t fix myself. I am not capable. There is this endemic problem called missing God’s goal (aka sin). No matter how hard “I try”, I am not capable of fixing that.
I must accept that Jesus is in control and stop struggling to heal my own broken heart. Jesus came and solved the problem for me. I must give up and follow him to receive salvation.
I must sacrifice my way of doing things to follow the way of Jesus.