Tom and his wife, Roberta, asked the agency for a healthy child when they applied for an international adoption. Instead, the young pastor and his wife received a son who had severe cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Their marriage struggled under the strain of constantly caring for Jacob, but they learned patience. God used that struggle to mold Tom into a more compassionate person, preparing him for greater ministry. Jacob, at thirty-seven, still requires constant care, but he loves church and brings joy wherever they take him.
Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me” (Matthew 16:24).
No one can plan his own life. Each life takes unexpected twists and turns—sometimes pleasant and sometimes tragic. However, for true success as God sees it, the cross of submission to Christ must be lifted and carried through each day. Believers will recognize in the end, as Tom and Roberta learned, that God’s way is better than theirs, though they may not see it until eternity.
Prayer Suggestion: Today, Lord, I joyfully take up the cross You give me, knowing that Your way is best.
Quicklook: Matthew 16:24–28 Devotional brought to you by God's Word For Today. God's Word For Today is available from Gospel Publishing House Prayer is our link with God, an awesome avenue through which we can express praise and adoration to Him for His goodness, love, and mercy; and an avenue through which we can voice our petitions and concerns. God's Word assures us that we can "come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need" (Hebrews 4:16).
Prayer also moves the hand of God on behalf of needs and circumstances in our church, our families, our community, nation, and world. Take time to pray and intercede for these areas as God leads you. Become part of a prayer group and intercede with others in times of corporate prayer. As you seek God's help, expect reports of great victory to follow as God answers prayer.