by Alexei Laushkin
It’s an interesting question, are we are you willing to be discipled?
We love to affirm the Great Commission to go and make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. But are we willing to come under teaching, are we teachable?
Are we willing to hold close the full commission to go forth “teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded?” And what did Jesus command and teach and embody?
As we ask these questions we start getting to the heart of discipleship.
I’ve been reading Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola’s Jesus a Theography. In the work (worth picking up) they make the point that disciple is more like the term apprentice. Are you willing to spend years perfecting your craft with the Great Teacher? Are you willing to be an apprentice of the Master Tradesman?
What sort of things are we learning as an apprentice? How to love not simply tolerate our enemies, growth in knowledge and love of Christ, true worship, how to follow in the footsteps of Jesus by spending time with the neglected and despised of our day. Putting on love in all that we do, being charitable with our love and generous with our talents.
To grow into this apprenticeship takes years, desire, and the work of the Holy Spirit. It requires not harsh effort but working on the soil of the fruit that will grow. This is where our care of God’s creation is very insightful. A good gardener or farmer knows that to get a good yield one need not obsess over the sort of fruit but instead one needs to work on the sort of soil that can facilitate growth in a wide range of climates and seasons. The soil needs a deep love and knowledge of Jesus, worship, community, and an openness to give and receive loving correction.