Have you been to the cross lately?
That one‘s troubles multiply daily and the list of unanswered prayers keeps growing by the minute, are not proof that God is dead–or He is a myth–or He does not care–or He is not listening. If anything, such occurrences could mean God’s timing and your timing are not in sync, or, perhaps you may have been too nonchalant in making your requests. Furthermore, the thorn you seek to remove maybe the link that keeps the chain together. In that case, God grace is sufficient for you.
Do you think Christmas is bigger than Easter?
This seems like an easy question to answer. However, opinions and contexts differ. For me, the answer is NO! And I am not the only one. Apparently, the Rev. Ray Pritchard agrees with me. Let us take a gander at what he wrote on his http://www.keepbelieving.com website.
In our society, there are two great religious holidays-Christmas and Easter. For most of us, Christmas is the bigger and greater season of the year. It is the time of year when we gather with family and friends to sing carols, decorate the tree, and exchange gifts. Christmas is the climax of the whole year. Easter? Well, for most people it is just another long weekend, another chance to get away for a few days.
Even Christians view Easter as a second-rate holiday!
Somehow we’ve gotten our thinking mixed up. If Easter had not happened, Christmas would have no meaning. If the tomb is not empty, the cradle makes no difference. If Jesus did not rise from the dead, then He is just a misguided Jewish rabbi with delusions of grandeur. If Easter is not true, then Christmas was only the story of an obscure baby born in an out-of-the-way village, in a forgotten land 2000 years ago. It is Easter that gives Christmas its meaning.
Do You want proof? In all the New Testament, no major doctrinal point is ever built upon the virgin birth of Christ. Not one. It is true. It happened. But it is never discussed or mentioned. In fact, two gospels do not even say anything about it.
However, when it comes to the resurrection? That is a different story. In every part of the New Testament, it comes up again and again. Read the sermons of Acts. When the first Christians preached, they did not mention Bethlehem; they talked about the empty tomb. They never got over the fact that on Easter Sunday when they went to the tomb, Jesus was gone.
In Luke 9:23 Jesus gives us a preview of what it means to follow Him. “… If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and pick up his cross daily and follow me”.
Although taking up your cross involves denying self, the main focus is about following Christ. The cross or burden we carry has to do with the choices we make with our will, the responses we have in our actions, and the attitude we carry in our hearts.
Our cross means that we are putting to death every decision, every response, and every attitude in our life that is not consistent with the love of Jesus Christ.