Discipleship is sometimes demanding, often unseen and not always fun!
This year as a church we have been focusing on Discipleship, and in fact today we welcome J John at each of our services to speak on this very subject. Discipleship is a term that can be hard to pin down, probably because it impacts every aspect of our lives. It is reflected in our speech, our relationships and our life choices. It is about whether we are following our own agenda or pressing on to take hold of what God wants for us.
Writing to the church at Philippi, the Apostle Paul says: ‘I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me’. This is a man who knows what discipleship means, and that at its core it involves a commitment to ‘press on’.
As you may know, this year I am running the London Marathon to raise funds for a project working with vulnerable women and children in Ethiopia. I do hope you will consider supporting this life-transforming work. You can find out more by visiting http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/Dave_Short
In training for the marathon, I am out four times a week, often in weather conditions I would prefer to be inside for. At times the experience can be a gruelling one, I can safely say interval training is not my idea of fun!
Similarly, Christian discipleship can be demanding. Building spiritual fitness means being harder on ourselves then most of us want to be. I don’t enjoy interval training, but I know it’s what I need to do if I want to last the distance. Likewise, I don’t always enjoy dragging myself out of a warm bed to read my Bible, but it’s important that I do. And whilst it is not always fun, it is always worth it. I enjoy having fun as much as the next person – but satisfaction trumps fun!
So let’s focus on the long term. The effort we make in discipleship today will bear fruit in the future. If you want to be a person of wisdom, of deep spirituality, of character, then there are no short cuts. The efforts we make today in discipleship will determine the people we will one day become.
Discipleship is sometimes demanding, often unseen and not always fun – but it is always worth it. So let us resolve to ‘press on’!