Jesus as the Good Shepherd was willing to lay down his life for us. This image of sacrifice and suffering is highlighted by Peter. "If you endure when you are beaten for doing wrong, what credit is that? But if you endure when you do right, and suffer for it, you have God's approval. For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you should follow in his steps." 1 Peter 2:20 - 21.
Following in Jesus' steps is what the Christian life is all about. Sometimes we would like to pick and choose the road we want to follow. We don't want any obstacles; we don't need any road signs. We fee we have everything under our own control. However, suffering is part of the walk with our Lord. Jesus told us to take up our cross and follow him.
If our aim is to follow Jesus' teachings in all that we do, we will experience opposition. Will we cave in or will we remain strong? Peter was addressing people who were undergoing some kind of persecution. He wanted them to remain strong. We also need to live the life Christ desires for us and be willing to suffer for it.
I invite you to think about the above passages of Scripture in preparation for your worship this Sunday and how these verses would speak to your own life.
Discipleship Questions for Reflection
How much is cross-bearing for Jesus a part of your life? Do you feel you are bearing a cross at all?
Have you ever suffered for doing what is right?