Rev. Jim Toole
Mark 8:34-37/Matthew 25:4-22
Fruit of the Spirit: Who Am I Becoming


Theme: Faithfulness is about surrendering to follow Jesus with a sense of priority in your life and circumstances.
It is about becoming a Jesus follower as a way of life.
Faithfulness is small incremental steps of allowing the Holy Spirit to stretch our spiritual capacity to follow Jesus. I believe faithfulness is a two sided coin of both identity and then action.

Mark 8:34-37 is one of those great challenges of Jesus on our identity.
The traditional interpretation of the “way of the cross” that is defined by C.S. Lewis and other scholars is that Jesus, when He says we must “lose” our lives and “take up our cross and follow Him”, He is saying do not build your identity on gaining the things of the world. I want you to find a whole new way. I want you to lose your old self; the old identity, and base yourself and your identity on Me.

Matthew 25:4-22 is a challenge of Jesus about faithfulness as an action.
The meaning of the parable extends far beyond financial investments. We all have been given skills, abilities, family connections, social positions, education, experiences, and more. We are called to act and be faithful in these various arenas that God has called us to. It is not
acceptable merely to take them for granted.

Questions for Reflection:

  1. In the analogy of the boardroom, who has the most of your attention; social self, private self, the work self, the sexual self, the recreational self, the religious self, or others?
  2. Where in your life do you need to take small steps towards faithfulness?