Follow Christ

To follow or to be followed. In our current digital age, social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok function based on who you choose to follow and who chooses to follow you. Hitting the “follow” button is easy, almost enticing. What does it cost us? Nothing. Well, maybe just our time spent scrolling through countless videos and images.


And who do we often follow on Twitter, Instagram, or TikTok? Those that inspire us, those that look like they have lifestyles that we desire to live, and those that entertain us. We’re not drawn to follow those who look like they’re struggling and failing. They may have our sympathy, but that doesn’t draw us in the way social media “influencers” do.


Take a moment to imagine ourselves as the disciples of Jesus Christ. You give up everything in your life to follow this Man. You see the tremendous supernatural miracles: the crippled walking, the lepers healed, the dead coming to life. You hear the glorious authority that comes from the teaching: the profound wisdom revealed, the powerful rebukes against the religious leaders of the time, the fulfillment of prophecies you grew up listening to as a child.


All of that seems to fall apart.


This great leader you had all your hope in, the Christ of God, as Peter confessed in Luke 9:20, is captured, beaten, and mocked. Christ would then be crucified on a cross, humiliated, and exposed to the world.


Who is this Man that you gave up everything to follow? I believe, like the disciples, many of us, if not all of us, would struggle to want to continue to follow Christ. Even Peter would deny Christ in Luke 22.


What Peter didn’t realize at the time of his confession of Jesus as the “Christ of God” is what Jesus would say after. In Luke 9:22, immediately after Peter correctly identifies Jesus, He tells them that “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.”


Shame, humiliation, and betrayal were always part of God’s plan for redemption. Following Christ is often not glorious. Unlike any expectation of the world, Jesus, our Saviour, would die a terrible death. Following Christ is not easy. There’s no simple “follow” button. We’re told by Christ that we are asked to (1) deny ourselves (2) take up our cross and (3) follow Him. Just as Christ died on the cross in self-sacrifice, we should not be surprised when there is a heavy cost to following Christ.


But it is so worth it. We love being around those who love us, don’t we? Now imagine how profound it is to be in the presence of the God who loves us to the point of giving up the life of His Son, Jesus Christ, for eternity. This is what makes the Gospel so remarkable: that God would do this for us when we are the ones who should have been on that cross.


I leave you with Jesus’ words in Luke 9:23: “If anyone would come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me.” Give prayerful thought to what it means to deny yourself and bear your cross daily for Christ.
Guest contributor,
Pastor Bryan



Happy Friday Church Family!

This blog is meant to ENCOURAGE you as a member of this local church. It’s a letter that I received recently from one of my heroes in the faith, Dr. Sam Martin. He preached at the conference and graduation of the Bible Institute where April and I completed a Certificate in Theological Studies 39 years ago. After a recent visit, he sent me a letter of encouragement and blessing. I just have to share it with you. 

Dear Deric,       

Good morning my friend! Many thanks for the blessing of last Sunday morning. It was a joy to be with you and the folks at City Centre, and I felt it important to write to you and share a few thoughts of appreciation.

Obviously, there are times when many people are taken for granted in their service, perhaps even overlooked, so I want to mention the following:

On our arrival, we were met outside by a delightful and welcoming young lady. To say we were impressed would not be sufficient. The welcome meant so much, and she should be commended. In the same way, the gentleman and lady who welcomed us into the sanctuary. These folks have a vital role to play in the life of the church, and they did a super job.

Your new Associate Bryan did a great job of making everyone feel at home, and he set the tone for a real worship experience. The worship was tremendous. May I also say in the context of worship that the worship team did a great job, the choir was excellent, and the young girl at the drums was the best I have ever heard! She should be commended. She was not only skilled but also sensitive and absolutely amazing!

Have a Spirit-filled week!

Blessings in Him,