“Following Jesus is actually a vocation to share the fate of God for the life of the world. Jesus invited people to ‘follow’ him in bearing the mystery of human death and resurrection. It is not a requirement in order that we can go to heaven later, it is an invitation so that we can live an entirely full life now.
Those who agree to carry and love what God loves, which is both the good and the bad of human history, and to pay the price for its reconciliation within themselves—these are the followers of Jesus—the leaven, the salt, the remnant, the mustard seed that God can use to transform the world. The cross is a very dramatic image of what it takes to be a usable one for God.
These few are the critical mass that keeps the world from its path toward greed, violence, and self-destruction. God is calling everyone and everything to God’s self (Genesis 8:16-17, Ephesians 1:9-10, Colossians 1:15-20, Acts 3:21, 1 Timothy 2:4, John 3:17), not just a few. To get there, God needs models and images who are willing to be ‘conformed to the body of his death’ and transformed into the body of his resurrection (Philippians 3:10). They are ‘the new creatures’ (Galatians 6:15), and their transformed state is seeping into history and ever so slowly transforming it into life instead of death. This is the basis for all of our hope—in Christ and for history.”
— Richard Rohr