I’m sure lots of us love invitations. Today just an invitation comes from Jesus to follow him.
Jesus said, “Come follow me…”Matthew 4:19
What did Jesus really mean when He said come follow me? If possible the apostle Paul actually asked people to imitate him.
I believe that is what Jesus wants us to do to imitate Jesus. The gospels give us a greater understanding of how Jesus lived His life. He also left us a commission to tell everyone that Jesus invites people to come and follow Him and become His disciple.
So for me, the first step in imitating Christ is to become His disciple.
But what is a disciple? Well, you can be a Christian without being a disciple in the sense that Jesus meant it. You can be a member of a church; you could even be a church leader.
A disciple is an active, intentional learner; a disciple is a practitioner, not just a student of the word but a doer. A disciple is a follower of a particular teacher. A disciple is someone who is accountable to someone who knows them and helps them learn and grow and live. A disciple is an apprentice. Christ made disciples and commanded us to do the same.
I remember many many years ago receiving an apprenticeship. This would be four years of theory and practical work learning the right skills. In many senses like a baby, I was utterly dependant on my mentor to teach me the skills required, like being a baby again needing milk. As the years went by I developed and learnt the skills required till I was given the opportunity to do work unsupervised just like a baby develops from milk to meat. You could say I went from a milkman to a meat man.
Yesterday evening we started an Alpha Course to learn just ‘Who Is Jesus?’ and I think that is a great start to becoming a disciple. How can you follow someone when you are limited to the information you have on that person.
Today I recommend you start reading the gospel of John.
I love the statement by Mark Green who states before sending James Bond any mission he is properly briefed ‘he is trained, he is resourced and he is supported. But if we ask ourselves whether adult Christians are properly briefed, trained, resourced and supported for their mission in the world, on the whole, they say that that they are not briefed, trained, resourced and supported for their mission in the world’. In other words, they need discipling just like me when I was an apprentice. I needed those four things.
So let me end by asking you do you have those four? Have you been briefed, trained, resourced and supported? Here at Erdington, we have a discipleship course that will help you. Drop us an email and we would be glad to help you start the journey at Jesus invitation Come and Follow ME.
Stay safe and blessed.