Summer 2024

Daily Devotional: Wednesday, August 16 - Submission

“Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: ‘Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.'” — Mark 8:34

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Becoming who God has called us to be is a process of transformation. But make no mistake about it: It is God who is transforming us as we embrace the process of change. A baby is born with everything he needs physically to become a full-grown adult. That baby just needs to be properly fed and nurtured.

Likewise, because of God’s Holy Spirit living in us, we already have everything we need spiritually to become more Christlike in how we perceive and respond to the world around us. We just need to properly feed and cultivate our Christian nature.

Embracing the transformation process begins with submission to God’s will. Jesus said in Mark 8:34 (NLT), “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me.” Only when each player fully buys into the coach’s philosophy and game plan can a team experience success.

Submit means “to line up under.” It describes a willing, conscious surrender to God’s authority as sovereign ruler over your life. Submission is the greatest distinguishing characteristic of a growing disciple of Christ.

God will change you according to your desire to be changed. If you kind of want to change but you really are not ready for radical change, you won’t change much. When you are truly overwhelmed by God’s love, grace, mercy and forgiveness in Christ, you will give your total and unreserved commitment to the Lord, obey His commands, and follow His leadership.

— Jerry Birch, Cleveland Cavaliers chaplain

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