Day 1: Read Mark 8:31-32. God's game plan is about a different kind of success: it's a life of sharing the wealth, taking the calculated risk for the benefit of others, loving your enemies, and living a life of strategic self-denial — a life in which you say, "Hey, it's not all about me. I'm here to make a difference in this world." Why does Peter push back against what Jesus says here? Why are you tempted to push back against what God clearly says to do?
Day 2: Read Mark 8:33. Peter's mistake here was that he was still hanging on to the world's plan for success: let's accumulate wealth and power, let's conquer our enemies, let's live the good life. And he was missing out on God's plan: We're not here to the live the good life, we're here to live a great life — to change the world, no matter the cost. In every endeavor we need to ask ourselves what do we savor? The world's model of the good life? Or God's model of a great life? When have you followed God’s plan instead of the world’s plan? What happened? Why don’t we follow God’s plan all the time?
Day 3: Read Mark 8:34. Denial has nothing at all to do with beating yourself down, but building yourself up. Such building up, Jesus has said, is the path of self-denial, putting your wants and needs on the back burner, and considering those around you.What is God calling you to deny and to build others up? What’s holding you back?
Day 4: Read Mark 8:35. The ready-for-the-Big-Leagues believer is the one who says, "Lord, it's not about me and what I want for me; it's about you and what you want to do through me, to be a blessing to others, and to bring glory to your name." This is an obstacle that every serious disciple must confront: Is my commitment to doing God's will greater than my desire to live a life of comfort?
Day 5: Read Mark 8:36. How does God influence how you use your time each day, your money, your talents and gifts? What do you need to transfer from the what matters most in the moment to what matters most in eternity?
Day 6: Read Mark 8:37. Truth is, you can give nothing, but God gave everything. Our heavenly Father put His Son’s life on the cross to have an eternal relationship with you. Take time to thank God for His great gift to you in what Jesus has done for you.
You can Go Deeper this week by reading the book The Life You’ve Always Wanted: Spiritual Disciplines for Ordinary People by John Ortberg.