Summary: There is a difference in the life-style of a fully devoted disciple and one who is not fully devoted.
What it Means to be a Fully Devoted Disciple
There is a difference in the life-style of a fully devoted disciple and one who is not fully devoted. When I think of my life as a new Christian I was like a roller coaster. I was up and down in my spiritual life. I had victory when I was with other Christians, but compromised when I was with non-Christians friends. I had received Jesus as my Savior but when with old friends at Gypsum I did not take a strong stand for the Lord.
Chameleon Christians are not fully devoted disciples – they take on the attitude of the people they happen to be around.
The fully devoted life is like riding the cog-rail train up the Pike’s Peak Mountain. There are twists and turns on the cog rail as you go up the mountain. It’s not near as fast as a roller coaster, but there is no comparison to the splendor and magnificent scenery as you travel to the 14,110 ft. high peak.
Carollyn and I have traveled the cog rail three times and I drove up one time. I prefer the cog-rail to driving. At the top of the mountain it is often cold and one time we rode into a blizzard with several feet of snow stacked up on places.
A roller coaster is fast and furious, but it goes up and down and in one big circle. On the way up your first incline you have great excitement and anticipation, and when you go down you leave your stomach behind. It’s thrilling to ride at 120 miles an hour and go 420 feet and drop 400 feet. But the ride is over in a minute.
The cog-rail train up to Pike’s Peak is a long ride of three hours and ten minutes for the round trip.
The cog-rail train is like a fully devoted disciple. There are bumps along the way, curves and some valleys, but you are always on an upward trend.
What is it that helps us reach the tipping point and turn toward becoming a fully devoted disciple? God often sends someone along our path in life that becomes our coach and discipler. For me it was my High School Sunday School teacher. Then at Central College it was my college room-mate Tom Morgan who roomed with me for three years. He came from a healthy Christian home and was a positive influence on my life. In fact he was the one who suggested that I date Carollyn Reid who became Carollyn Ellis.
Many of you have come to faith and are followers of Jesus because someone became a friend and encouraged you to live for Jesus. Erroll Dietz had a friend a work who helped him come to faith. Erroll is going to come and tell us how he came to having faith in Jesus.
What does it means to be a disciple?
The word “disciple” is used 269 times in the New Testament. A disciple is a learner and follower of his/her teacher.
The key word to becoming a disciple of Jesus is “obedience.” The call of Jesus is a demanding call. If a person says he wants to follow Jesus and continues to live as he is living is fooling him self.
Jesus gave the call to follow him as a disciple in Luke 9:23-26, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it. What good is it for a man to gain the world world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self. If anyone is ashamed of me and my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.”
The call of Jesus is to follow him. He doesn’t say where He is going to lead us. Our commitment is to follow. Our commitment is like the missionary song we sing: “If Jesus goes with me I’ll go, anywhere.”
Jesus said, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” Luke 9:23 Self denial is doing things we don’t like to do. Self denial means doing things that are not easy or convenient. The call of Jesus is a call to self-denial not a call to self-fulfillment.
#A man living in a rural community called his doctor late one stormy night. “Doctor, my wife is very sick. Can you come out and help her. You must come over right now.” The doctor replied, “I would be glad to come, but my car is in the shop. If you will come and get me, I’ll come and help.” There was silence on the phone for a long time. Then the man said, “You mean, you want me to come out on a night like this.”