In Matthew 16, verse 24, Jesus tells His followers that “If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me.” It is common among Christians to talk about “taking up your cross”.
We generally pull that out whenever we are going through some sort of trial. Yet we don’t hear a lot in our modern churches about denying ourselves. It seems we’ve relegated that to the people of the past, the super-spiritual or the mystics. After all, denying oneself is a wholly un-American way to think.