Mark 8:31-38 (NIV)
31 He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. 32 He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.
33 But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.”
34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? 37 Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? 38 If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.”
I've always been moved and inspired by the call to take up the cross. It seems to be that this lies at the heart what it means to be a Christian. The call of Christ is to walk the way of sacrifice, to let the cross shape the way we live, to experience the daily crucifixion of dying to the world, and perhaps one day to make the final sacrifice. Only then can we gain what Christ offers us; by losing our life, we gain it again. This is what I was aiming to communicate here.
Someone asked if they could have another listen to this. So, in the unlikely event that anyone else wants to listen to me rambling on for half an hour, here it is. Sermon begins at about 2 mins.