“¶And He summoned the crowd with His disciples, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. “For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world, and forfeit his soul? “For what will a man give in exchange for his soul? “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”” Mark 8:34-38 LSB https://bible.com/bible/3345/mrk.8.38.LSB
The most succinct description of the christian life, the very essence of what God requires and desires of His people, is described in these verses. I never grow weary of hearing them though i am convicted by them each time. God calls us to a life completely yielded to Him and His cause. What else could or would God require? If He is God He must require us to be completely and unequivocally His. What does this life look like? Loving and serving people to the point of sacrifice for the purpose of convincing them to repent and obey everything Jesus commanded. God sent His Son to save the world and He sends His church to proclaim that work in order to reconcile all people to the Savior Who is Jesus the Lord. Love for money and its pleasures will be the stumbling block to our obedience. We will want to do our own thing and live for our own purposes rather than sacrifice for God’s purposes. While the house is on fire we do not go on vacation. The world is on fire. While our children drown in the pool we do not go golfing. God’s children are drowning in their sin. We are to be a people who defer pleasure while we work diligently to see His kingdom come and His will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Our joy is that of seeing people reconciled to God and walking in obedience to His commands. No greater joy has the Father than to see His children walking in love, love for Him and love for one another.