And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of me. Matthew 10:38
Jesus clearly tells us that following Him must involve us taking up a cross and yet, we also read in Matthew 11:30, My yoke is easy and My burden is light. So, which is it? Which is true? The truth of the matter is that they are both true - and both true at the same time.
To truly follow Jesus means to come into conflict with the world around us - to stand for beliefs and principles that are not popular or accepted generally in society; to swim against the tide of public opinion, bearing wounds that sometimes run very deeply.
Yet, when we turn to follow Him we begin to experience His presence and His love - suddenly, everything is changed. Our cross is lifted into His light and pain is eclipsed in His glory. Sorrow and joy, pain and glory side by side.