Here’s a challenging passage for Christians to read: Luke 14:25-33.

25 Large crowds were traveling with Jesus, and turning to them he said: 26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters—yes, even their own life—such a person cannot be my disciple. 27 And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.

28 “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? 29 For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, 30 saying, ‘This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.’

31 “Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Won’t he first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? 32 If he is not able, he will send a delegation while the other is still a long way off and will ask for terms of peace. 33 In the same way, those of you who do not give up everything you have cannot be my disciples.

Sometimes, we make it sound too easy to become a follower of Christ. In one sense, it is easy. We just come to him as we are because Christ will never turn anyone away who comes to him in repentance and humility. But perhaps that is the cost of discipleship that many people can’t afford. To deny themselves, to admit they were wrong. To confess that they need someone else (Jesus) to run their life. And we have to do that, not just once, but each and every day. That’s a lot of self-denial and confession. That’s the price we have to be willing to pay.

What does it cost you to be a follower of Jesus?