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March 3 – Preparing by carrying

… they seized one Simon of Cyrene who was coming in from the country, and laid on him the cross, to carry it behind Jesus.” – Luke 23:26

Scripture reading: Luke 23:13-31

On the first Good Friday, Simon carried the cross of Jesus. Simon carried a physical cross and we Christians, who can see ourselves reflected in Simon, are called to carry our cross and follow after Jesus in heartfelt discipleship. As we look forward to Good Friday 2023, we do well to consider this calling carefully. Search your heart and life, and dare to ask yourself a few very important questions:

How do you view your own trials and temptations? With a shrug of the shoulders or with much bitterness? The Lord calls you to see that it is through the struggles of life, that you carry a cross. As you follow Jesus, there will be trials and temptations: your cross is laid upon you for your spiritual benefit. Are you willingly carrying your cross?

How are you living day by day? Are you following Christ, walking in His footsteps? That is the call of God to you. The pathway is not easy, but by following the Lord Jesus you prove yourself to be His disciple. As such, you are called to take up your cross. Where is your hope? The well-prepared Christian finds hope in the cross of Christ, not in vain human works and efforts. Hear the call of the Lord. Take up your cross and follow Jesus, and so you will be prepared not just to mark the special days of Jesus’ passion, but to live a lifetime in fellowship with the One Whose sacrifice on the cross was the price of our salvation.

Suggestions for prayer

Seek wisdom from the Lord to view your trials and temptations from a Christian perspective. Ask the Holy Spirit to give you strength to bear whatever cross is there in your life as you follow Jesus.

Rev. Gregg V. Martin was ordained to the Gospel ministry in 1977. In his years of service, he pastored a total of five congregations in three Canadian provinces. He also served for more than seven years in Latin America as a missionary, providing leadership training in Reformed mission churches. Get this devotional delivered directly to your phone each day via our RP App. It is also available in print, for purchase, at  

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