Is following Christ difficult?

 

Is following Christ difficult?

Yes, indeed, following Jesus Christ is a challenging task. It requires discipline to walk with God. Therefore, anyone who claims to be a follower of Christ but is not serious about this commitment may lack discipline over time and may eventually give up. To follow Jesus Christ is to completely submit oneself to Him, recognizing that He is our Lord and Savior and that our love for Him must take precedence over everything else (Luke 14:26).

While following Christ may seem easy for some individuals, it is, in fact, a challenging yet ultimately rewarding journey. Picture a path that is both straightforward and full of twists and turns. That is what it is like to follow Christ: it may seem simple, yet it presents challenges along the way.

Christ’s main messages are about love, kindness, forgiveness, and understanding. However, as we go through life, it can get complicated, and we need to stick to these principles despite the challenges.

Jesus provides a profound guideline: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’ (Matthew 22:37-39). By replacing hate with love and anger with kindness, you will feel closer to God and experience greater peace in your life.

In our sincere walk with Christ, we discover the strength to silence our flesh, aligning our hearts with the will of the Lord (Matthew 26:41). The truth is, we need God’s grace for our daily journey with the Lord Jesus Christ, as no one, in their strength, has the power to bear the heaviness of the cross and follow the Lord without God’s help. The Bible emphasizes, “With man, it is impossible, but with God, all things are possible” (Matthew 19:25-26).

Challenges arise from various sources: societal pressures, personal struggles, or conflicting priorities. It requires sacrifice and a shift in perspective. Sometimes, it means choosing a harder path that aligns with Christ’s teachings rather than the easier, more popular route.

Nevertheless, here is the wonderful part: when people face these challenges, they often discover meaning in their lives, become stronger, and feel a deeper connection with themselves, God, and others. It is not about being perfect but about striving to live the values Christ taught us in our daily lives.

Remember that when you choose to live according to God’s principles and not conform to the world’s patterns, you will face rejection. The world will reject you simply because your lifestyle does not fit the norm, even if you have done nothing wrong. As Jesus said, ‘If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.’ (John 15:19, NIV)

On the other hand, there are four categories of people in this world concerning this matter. The first category will support you and love you for who you are. The second category will reject you simply because you do not conform to the world’s standards. The third category will pretend to love you and try to get close to you because they have a mission to accomplish – and that mission is to harm you. The fourth category consists of those who do not care at all. They are just there, watching what will happen, or they do not even care about what you do or not do. Therefore, do not be afraid, for the Lord will guide you and be with you. Seek God’s wisdom and discernment so that you can continue to do His work without distraction or interruption.

To summarize, following Christ is not about a set of rules; it is about a transformative journey—a continuous process of growth, understanding, and love. It is not always easy, but it is profoundly fulfilling.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father,

I come before you with a humble heart, acknowledging the challenges that come with following Christ. Your Word tells us that the path may be difficult, but with you, all things are possible. I pray for strength and discipline for my fellow believers who may be struggling.

Grant them the grace to walk with you faithfully, even in the face of difficulties. May their love for Jesus be the driving force in their lives, surpassing any challenges that may arise. Help them to remember that, through your strength, they can overcome all obstacles.

Lord, instill in us a deep commitment to follow you wholeheartedly, recognizing Jesus as our Lord and Savior. May our faith be unwavering, and may we find fulfillment in the transformative journey of walking with Christ.

In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

 

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-Charlene L. Kazay

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