“Then he said to them all: ‘Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.’” --Luke 9:23
A friend of mine offers this fitness advice: “Walk your dog every day, even if you don’t have a dog.” This friend, who doesn’t own a dog, is a faithful walker and hiker. I do walk my dog every day—twice!—as do most of the dog owners I know. We’re motivated by our love for our dogs; we’re dedicated to meeting their needs. We have to walk them. We walk our dogs in any weather, however tired we feel, whatever else we’d rather be doing. My friend encourages everyone to be that committed to a daily walk. What motivates us to walk with God every day? Yes, we love him, and we know that he loves us. Yes, we need guidance, comfort, and peace, which we find when we walk with God. We know that in any weather—especially when life is stormy—and however worn out by life we feel, we should walk with God. Nevertheless, it can be a hard thing to walk with God every day or, in Jesus’s words, “to take up [our] cross daily and follow [him].” Being a disciple takes discipline. We have to be that committed.