The cross is the great paradox of being a Christian disciple. It is through the cross, which is an instrument of suffering, pain and sacrifice that we will come to new life with a merciful and loving God. As Jesus proclaims in Matthew’s Gospel, anyone that wishes to follow Jesus “must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me” (Mt. 16:24). Christianity oftentimes focuses on the “feel-good” aspect where self-sacrifice and giving of oneself are not always mentioned in performing the mission and acts as Christian disciples in a 21st century world. We have an age where information and service of food and goods delivery are instantaneous and leads to immediate gratification. What are your crosses in life, and how can you take up new crosses in order to have the heart, and mind of Jesus? As St. Paul states in his letter to the Romans, one must “not conform yourself to this age but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect” (Rom. 12:2). It is through the blood of Jesus Christ and His example of taking up the cross that we will rid ourselves of all that separates us from His love. How will you take up your cross this day and follow Him more closely?
Soul of Christ, be my sanctification.
Body of Christ, be my salvation.
Blood of Christ, fill all my veins.
Water of Christ’s side, wash out my stains.
Passion of Christ, my comfort be.
O good Jesus, listen to me.
In Thy wounds I fain would hide,
N’er to be parted from Thy side,
Guard me, should the foe assail me.
Call me when my life shall fail me.
Bid me come to Thee above,
With Thy saints to sing Thy love,
World without end. Amen. (Retrieved from: The Anima Christi – Prayers – Vatican News)