Question: What does Jesus mean when he talks about taking up our cross?
Answer: Our journey of faith begins in baptism. When we are faithful to it, we find God’s plan for us, his way of allowing us to participate in his saving work, which in turn becomes for us our own salvation. Stated simply, we share in the mission of Jesus each day. We live our life with all of its ups, downs, joys, and sorrows in union with the mission of Jesus. Our work then is holy. It is joined to the cross, God’s will for Jesus—the way in which he destroys sin and death and makes eternal life possible. His sacrifice accomplishes what we ourselves cannot do. To take up the cross, then, means that we share in the mission of Jesus and so embrace the sufferings of the cross. It is our daily life made holy, given a redemptive mission. It is our purpose and goal to unite our life to that of Christ. St. Paul says it best, “If we have grown into union with him through a death like his, we shall also be united with him in the resurrection” (Rom 6:5). ©Liturgical Publications