Oct 20, 2019
172 Take Up Your Cross and Follow A Guided Christian Meditation on Mark 8:34-37
I'm Chaplain Jared and I work as a hospice chaplain and an ICU chaplain, my purpose in making this podcast is to help you find more peace in your life and to be more open for your heart to be changed by the Spirit of God. By using centuries old form of Christian Meditation named Lectio Divina:
Outline: Relaxation, Reading, Meditation, Prayer, Contemplation and Visualization. Get into a place where you can sit comfortably and uninterrupted for about 20 minutes.You should hopefully not be driving or anything tensing or unrelaxing. If you feel comfortable to do so, I invite you to close your eyes. Guided Relaxation / Guided Meditation: Breathe and direct your thoughts to contacting God. Let your stomach be a balloon inflate, deflate.
Bible verses for Meditation:
34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? 37 Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?
34 He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. 36 For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life? 37 Indeed, what can they give in return for their life?
Meditation on Scripture: At the risk of being too inwardly focused I am pondering today this scripture in my own context. The day this comes out I will be on an airplane going to the Chaplaincy School for the Navy. I have spent many years in preparation for this opportunity and I feel is is something God has been calling me to. I am in the process of getting all my uniforms altered for my new designator as a chaplain. I am quite literally taking on the cross on my uniforms. I have been thinking about this in a more practical way that I have in the past yet there is little difference from the cross of Jesus that I have been asked to take up for decades in the past. Many times when I talk to people who are not in the ministry they speak of this work with a tone of mystery. In a way are we not all called to serve God and be His ministers in the various capacities in our own lives? When I was teaching physics was God expecting less of me? When I was working in other fields did God not expect me to love Him and others? What about you? Do you see your role in life as a minister of the Lord Jesus Christ? Perhaps not as a preacher, or pastor of a congregation, but the path God has you on is no less important. You can bring peace and joy into people’s lives around you and your own. There are many members in the body of Christ and they all have different functions, yet they are all important. If we think we get to operate at a lower standard because we are in industry then we misinterpret what Jesus is calling us to do. God loves us just how we are and he wants the best for us. For this reason he will always help us improve and overcome the sins that we fall into. On top of that he will help to mold us closer to His image as we draw near to Him.
Meditation of Prayer: Pray as directed by the Spirit. Dedicate these moments to the patient waiting, when you feel ready ask God for understanding you desire from Him.
Meditation of God and His Glory / Hesychasm: I invite you to sit in silence feeling being patient for your own faults and trials.
Summarize what insights you have gained during this meditation and meditate and visualize positive change in your life: This is a listener funded podcast at patreon.com/christianmeditationpodcast
Final Question: What is the ministry you can dedicate your life to?
Final Thought: Taking on the cross of Jesus is not without problems. Those who were closest to the Savior found there to be real challenges to this. It will not always be easy to learn to Love as He did. There are times when those who we most want to help will respond in ways that make it hard, yet this is the life we are called to. God’s strength accompanies His commands. When he asks us to follow Him, we can do it because we will be strengthened by Him.
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