Cross Centered Living
Being creatures of habit we build our lives around our priorities and passions. We build our routines and habits around the things that truly matter to us. This is important to understand if we are seeking to change and build habits around the gospel.
A cross centered life is made up of cross centered days. Reminding ourselves of the gospel is the most important daily habit we can establish. We can do this by immersing ourselves in the truths of the bible every day.
Preaching to yourself is a great way to start centering your life around the cross. You don't have to be a public speaker to preach, for the audience you are seeking is your own heart. To preach to yourself you simply need to own up to your own sinfulness and run to Jesus through faith.
However, keeping the sparks of faith can be hard and living a cross centered life is not always easy. In order to keep the flame of faith alive in our heart we need to keep coming back to the source of the fire, the gospel. Below are 5 simple ways to help us all draw closer to the cross each day.
1. Memorize the Gospel:
Memorizing the scripture is a great way to store His word in our hearts (Psalm 119:11). Wherever we are, having God's word in our heart allows us to pull out His truth and wisdom to strengthen us.
Even if you're not good at memorization with practice the important messages will stick with you. Continue to work at memorizing scripture God is not keeping score, and it's worth the effort. Start with the gospel and central messages of the bible.
Having verses accessible throughout the day is helpful for all of us. Being able to pull out verses to encourage and strengthen us will continue to help us practice cross centered living. Below are some simple versus to remind us of the truth and love of God.
→Romans 8:31-32: If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not save His only Son but gave Him up for us all.
→Romans 5:6-8: You see, at the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly...But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
→2 Cor. 5:21: God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.
2. Pray the Gospel:
The gospel gives us the courage to pray boldly and approach God in confidence. To pray the gospel means to simply thank God for the blessings, and new life He has given you through His Son Jesus Christ. Praying the gospel allows us to praise, confess, and ask God with an attitude of grace and faith.
3. Sing the Gospel:
Not all worship songs are created equal. Many songs today are becoming more man centered than cross centered. Finding great worship music and hymns that are cross centered will help strengthen your heart and mind. Starting your day with music that speaks of the cross is a great way to clear your mind and start fresh and anew each day.
4. Review How it Has Changed You:
Today many people either try to forget the past or dwell on the mistakes they've made. Both of these are not good for your health or state of mind. For Christians one of the best ways to draw near the cross is to remember the past, however not for means of revisiting; but to remind them of how truly great God's salvation and grace really is.
Your story doesn't have to involve drugs, immortality, or something terrible it is still a miracle of God's grace. God intervened and changed your heart, He saved you. Reflecting on your story daily will encourage you and prepare you to not only share your story but the story of the gospel as well.
5. Study the Gospel:
In order to live a cross centered life you need to live a cross centered daily life, you can do this by studying the gospel. The gospel will grow a desire and passion in your heart for what Jesus has done, and it will increase your knowledge and understanding of what that means. The gospel is world changing, and life permeating truth, studying it everyday will grow your fire and spark a new life within you.
You Don't Have To Do It Alone:
These 5 practical recommendations will give you a clearer understanding of what it means to live every day with a cross centered mind. Every time we memorize, pray, sing, study, or review the gospel we must ask the Holy Spirit to open our hearts and mind to the power and love of the gospel again and again. Through the gospel God's spirit will light the truths of the cross in our heart.
Draw near the fire of faith everyday, build a cross centered life one day at a time.