I’m baaack! Sorry to all of my God culture fanatics. I have been writing steadily for the last seven months or so, and just needed a couple days off. But I’m back and I am ready to challenge you. Are you ready to accept it? Since you are logged in, I will assume your answer is yes, so therefore, let’s dive in…
Not Just Lip Service I would like to begin by asking you what seems like a simple question. Do not be fooled by it, however. It is much easier to pay it lip service than to actually live it. So ready or not, here we go. What are you willing to do to follow Jesus?
Think about the implications. If you were a world class athlete, what would you do to become the best? What level of training would it require? Are you under the misconception that talent is enough? Talented athletes are a dime a dozen. The difference between greatness and failure is what takes place off the field prior to the competition. No one can succeed at a high level in anything without the proper preparation.
Unprepared Yet we live our lives every day trying to walk in the blessing of the Almighty with zero preparation! Then we wonder why God appears to be inactive on our behalf.
Have you ever met a football player that does not run, lift weights, eat the right foods, etc…not withstanding the quarterback? Yet his preparation may be even more intense as it requires a level of mental preparation unparalleled in all of sport. The quarterback must train himself in such a way that he has become familiar with every position on the field. His opponents included. Do you think that is easy? Can it be done without intense diligence?
How about a prize fighter? Fat and out of shape does not bode well in the ring. Yet that is what many of us are spiritually. Imagine the discipline required to continue such intense and grueling training as a fighter, all the while dieting in a manner that allows you to fight in a weight class that may be twenty pounds under your natural weight.
Love and Necessity In all truth, the athlete trains for two reasons. Number one, they love the sport in which they participate. Secondly, it is necessary to perform well.
Then there are we Christians. How many of us claim to love God, yet our Bible’s collect dust as they sit idly on the shelf? How many of us refuse to train and discipline our lives, and then blame God for our woes?
The word “disciple,” by the way, comes from the word “discipline.” To be a disciple of Jesus Christ requires disciplining your life to parallel the lifestyle of Jesus Christ of Nazareth.
With that in mind, ask yourself the following questions. Is it possible to be a disciple of Christ while being unfamiliar with the Word of God? Can I possibly be a disciple of Christ if I have no prayer life? Am I a member of the body of Christ if I refuse to fellowship with the saints, or even worse, if I never leave the four walls of my comfortable life, let alone minister to the lost?
True Disciples Keep in mind that I am not discussing being a Christian. Anyone can lay claim to that. I am discussing what it really means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ. When I observe both the life of Christ, and the true disciples of the early Church, contained in the Book of Acts, I see something radically different than I see today.
I see people who have trained themselves in the Word and ways of God. I see people who were willing to give their entire lives to the kingdom of God. I see a commitment level that would put even the worlds greatest athlete to shame, as these disciples were not only willing, but many did die for the sake of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Therefore, I will ask once more. What are you willing to do to follow Jesus? Are you willing to risk persecution? Will you lay down your vices? Will you pick up the Word of God and not just read it, but begin to live it? What will you do?
The future of the world is depending on your answer.