–teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you.
When Christ met with the disciples after His resurrection, He commanded them to make disciples, teaching them everything He had taught them. It was not a request. Later, Paul elaborated on this command in his instructions to Timothy in II Timothy 2:2. Timothy was to take what he had learned from Paul and entrust them to dependable disciples who would then pass them on to others. The “faithful men and others” are you and me.
There really is no opting out of this call, though we in modern Christianity have sought to separate the idea of being a Christian from its root meaning of discipleship. The fact is you have as much of Christ as you want. How much of Him do you want in your life? Do you go to church on Sunday and then forget Him the rest of the week? Or are you inundated by work, family, and the world in general your routine? Do you see Him as a life saver only and not a life changer?
Discipleship-lifelong learning-is the only way out of the doldrums of life. There is no other way, though the world tempts us to conclude “Sunday is enough; don’t get too radical; get along with others; you have other important things to do.” It was a problem for the disciples at Laodicea. Do not let it become a problem for you. Are you hot or are you cold? Peter Lord, a pastor I heard once said the most miserable person on earth is not the non-Christian, rather it is the Christian who knows how they should be living and growing and isn’t.
You may be as I was as a young Christian: life was like a roller coaster, based on emotions and actions rather than truth I was ignorant of. I floundered like a fish out of water. Finally, someone came to me and began to teach me about being a Christian. He, and then others, helped me develop a foundation of living based on Christ and His Word. I learned to apply truth to my life; they also taught me by their example. They helped me to develop a passion for lifelong learning at the feet of Jesus. Simply put, they discipled me. It was what I needed, and it may be what you need. Or you could be that person who pulls another one off the roller coaster by discipling them. Search your heart. Talk to Jesus, your divine Savior and leader about it. You are his disciple. He can take you there if you are willing. What kind of disciple do you want to be?
- Take an inventory of your walk with Christ. Make a list of those things in your life that you do to grow spiritually each week. Does it include a regular intake of the Word through Bible Study, devotions, scripture memorization, church attendance and fellowship with other believers? If not, think and pray about how you can incorporate these habits into your daily and weekly routine. Why? It is impossible grow as a Christian disciple unless you develop a regular intake of scripture and allow the Holy Spirit to grow you.
- Do you feel a need for someone to come along side you and help you grow in the spiritual disciplines of a disciple? Pray about this and ask our Lord to send someone to you that can help. Talk to someone you respect about it.
- Is the Holy Spirit prompting you to be a disciple maker? Take the next step as He leads because you only must be willing. Remember, the command to make disciples in Matthew 28:19-20 includes you and every other Christian. There are no exceptions. What will you do?