Jesus gives a radical call to those who want to follow Him: deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow!
How does that play out in our daily lives? In a culture obsessed with the SELF, how do we change the narrative in our lives, and learn to live lives of selflessness, service, compassion, and love? As followers of Jesus can we live in a counter-cultural way, and show others the love of Jesus by how we put Jesus first before ourselves in all ways?
WEEK 1: JUST SAY NO
What did Jesus mean when he called us to “take up our cross” and follow him? In Week 1 we discuss the lie that being selfish leads the best life. In fact, as Jesus reveals, the selfish life leads to the smallest life, and the denied life leads to the biggest life. We talk about the three ways that denying ourselves actually frees us to be who God has called us to be.
WEEK 2: WHAT WOULD I WANT?
How do we practically live out Jesus’ command to love our neighbors as ourselves? What if we defined that kind of love as treating people the way we’d want to be treated? And if so, how does that translate to our friendships, the people in our lives, and even the people in our communities? Can we learn to get outside of the world’s thinking of “what is best for me?” and truly start to love others like we love ourselves?
WEEK 3: SERVE IT FORWARD
Part of how we learn to live “the denied life” is to serve others. But it starts with knowing how God has served us. Then we can learn, out of the overflow of knowing God’s sacrificial love for us, how to serve others. In this lesson we offer three practical ways to take what God has done in our lives and serve it forward.
WEEK 4: WHO ARE YOU FOLLOWING?
As we close out the series we land on a pivotal topic: who are we following? We might say we follow Jesus, but what does that mean to us? Are we being more influenced by culture, friends, or social media? In what ways does being a follower of Jesus impact how we make decisions about morality, how we treat others, and how we make important decisions in our lives?