I had no idea, you could say I was clueless! What did it mean to be a disciple of Jesus?
In 1977, I clearly heard and understood the message that God loved me and sent his son, Jesus, to pay the penalty of sin that I owed. I repented of my sins and placed my faith, my future, my total being in God’s care. Without realizing it at the time, I stepped into a process of walking with God everyday. God was slowly transforming my value system from being solely concentrated on me and my desires to him and his desires for me.
There is indeed a process that God places us in to become all that he wants us to become. All who have made that decision to receive Jesus as Lord are learning to understand what God desires. We no longer live for self but for the Lord.
Every person who is a Christian is a follower, a disciple of Jesus. Everyone should have a plan of growing to become more and more like him. How? Here are a few ideas:
Personal Plan for Spiritual Growth
1. Identify with the Community of Faith through baptism and church membership.
2. Find areas to serve God using the spiritual gifts, abilities and interests he has given us.
3. Grow in intimacy in our walk with God through daily, disciplined reading of the Bible and prayer.
4. Seek to encourage others in their walk with God through being a part of a small group. You cannot grow on your own, you need the encouragement and you can encourage others as well.
5. Share your faith. God has/is working in your life not just for you but that others can know him through you. God wants to use your story to change the lives of those who do not know him.
6. Give of your financial resources to support the work of the local church. God calls us to be generous with what he has entrusted us with financially.
These six principles are “basic training”. The entire span of our walk with Jesus is based on these. Following Jesus is not rocket science but is the discipline to faithfully practice them continually growing to become all he wants us to be.
My friend, go for it! Grow in faithfulness, love God passionately, serve Him loyally, and impact others radically. This is what a disciple of Jesus looks like.