From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life. Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!” Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.” Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it. What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul? (Matthew 16:21–26, NIV 1984).
My Musings – What good indeed. A chasing after the wind. A fool’s errand. For even if we could achieve it (gain the whole world), it would be insufficient to redeem our soul. We all have things that we pursue, things that glitter like gold but end up being fool’s gold. Deceptively attractive and promising in appearance, but not as beneficial or as valuable as it appears.
Taking up one’s cross, on the other hand, seems to not glitter at all. But we must understand that not all that glitters is gold, pure “gold” needs no glitter at all.
My Advice – Follow Him. Taking up our cross is not the errand of a fool. “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” — Jim Elliot