Tell me what is your response to the cross? Do you truly understand what Christ did for you on the cross? If it were not for His sacrifice neither of us would have the opportunity to have the gift of salvation. When I reflect on God’s Word I remember the response the disciples had toward the message Mary, Joanna, and Mary Magdalene brought concerning Jesus’ resurrection from the grave. They responded out of disbelief. The disciples’ response to the women was not a response of faith but rather doubt. Their response questioned whether or not Jesus really was going to hold firm to His promise to rise three days after going to the cross (Luke 24:9-12).
Instead of trusting Jesus’ promise, they chose not to believe. They doubted whether or not Jesus really did rise from the grave defeating sin and death on the cross. “A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” (John 20:26-27, NIV) So many Christians tend to enter the month of May with a forgetful mindset.
In the month of Spring, stores were filled with decorations and candy supporting the Easter Holiday. As soon as the day of Easter was over sales were up for Easter products just to get rid of them. Stores seem to be experts at hyping up seasonal products to get customers to see the value in making an investment. Stores are also great at moving past the holiday season onto the next best thing that will help make them a profit. Sometimes too quickly in my opinion. Once stores find they are not able to get what they want out of something they move on. Unlike stores, we as Christians cannot be like them. We cannot simply just move on and forget the powerful sacrifice Christ made on and off the cross. His death, burial, and resurrection are critical components of how we live out our faith.
So, tell me what does it mean to truly respond to Christ’s sacrifice on the cross? Did you know that every year on May 21st the United States celebrates National American Red Cross Founder’s Day? On this day this humanitarian organization is remembered for its services in supporting the needy and sick. The American Red Cross symbolizes healing and is celebrated on May 21st, but those who really know what this organization offers understand that they do their job all year long. They are dedicated to serving and supporting those in need and they have not stopped responding to the very thing their organization was founded on. We as Christians can never forget that our faith is founded on the good news of the Gospel. This month we cannot forget to continue to respond to the cross. But the question really is how do we do that?
How Do We Respond?
It is quite simple actually yet not always easy to remain faithful in. God calls every believer to respond to the cross by living in complete faith and obedience to Him. The first greatest commandment we are given is to “Love the Lord our God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength.” The second greatest commandment is to “Love others as yourself.” (Matthew 22:37-39). In order to do so, we as a church must remain faithful in our worship to God, fellowship, discipleship, and evangelism. So, I ask you, how will you be faithful this month in all these areas? Although the body of Christ is collective, we individually are responsible for how we respond and live out our faith in Jesus Christ.
My encouragement to you is to read these passages here. (Matthew 28:16-20, 1 John 1:3, John 8:1-11, John 4:1-42, and John 5:1-9). They are examples of how we should respond and examples of those who chose to respond to their recognition that Jesus Christ is Lord.