~Dr. Martin Luther King~
The Bible tells us we have a choice. We either choose to live for self or live for Christ. Whichever one you choose, you have to make the choice to die to the other because you cannot serve two masters.
God will not settle for partial commitment from His children. Following Him requires placing Christ first in all areas of our lives. Experiencing a crown of thorns will require sacrifice and a daily pursuit of holiness in our lives. You may often be rejected by friends, family and co-workers because of the life-style you have chosen to live. Your 10% tithe is no longer an option and attending church regularly is a given. Your role as a pew sitter is history and you will now be busy for the Kingdom of God. Often times what you do in the church will go unnoticed. Your life must reflect a willingness to serve.
People are not always willing to sacrifice everything in this life for the crown of thorns. Achieving success in our lives requires hours of hard work, commitment and dedication to the cause. Peace, salvation, God's forgiveness, mercy, grace and love all come with a price. It is impossible to achieve the crown of roses until we have experienced the crown of thorns.
If you are living for yourself today, expecting a crown of roses, you are not living for Christ. If for you to live is all about you, you are undoubtedly missing out on the forgiveness that God wants to give you. You cannot wear a crown of thorns if your life is all about you. If you strive to be in the forefront, you will never show anyone Christ. If your desire is to be exalted in the body of Christ as a Christian, you have missed the entire message of the Bible.