“I was working out in the front yard the other day,” Stan commented, “and a couple of the neighborhood children stopped on their way home from school.”
“That’s nice,” I replied. “What’d they have to say?”
“Well,” Stan said, “I asked them what they had done at school that day. They excitedly told me that the teacher had given them an assignment of something to think about.”
“What was that?”
“It seems that the teacher had given them the old riddle of the chicken and the egg to think about and to come back with their answer.”
“Oh,” I said, “the one about which came first, the chicken or the egg?”
“That’s it,” Stan replied.
“Did you tell them what you think about that?” I asked.
“They didn’t ask me, and I didn’t volunteer,” Stan replied. “But as they went on their way, I was thinking about the question and how it applies to discipleship and my faith walk.”
“Chickens and eggs applying to discipleship and your faith walk?” I said. “How so?”
“Well,” Stan replied, “the chicken and egg riddle and which came first may leave that question up in the air, but I don’t think the same thing is true about Christianity and discipleship. To me it seems pretty clear.”
“What’s pretty clear?”
“That coming to faith is to be followed by discipleship,” Stan replied, “so what comes first is being a Christian, and then discipleship is to come next.”
“People are not automatically disciples when they come to faith?”
“I don’t think so,” Stan said. “Otherwise, Jesus wouldn’t have said what He did about ‘if’ a person wants to be a disciple. Also, I don’t think He would have told the disciples ‘to go and make disciples’ if it was automatic.”
“No,” he continued, “seems to me that becoming a Christian is the first thing. Then come the choices about becoming and being a disciple!”
Bible verses to consider:
And He was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life shall lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.” Luke 9:23-24.
Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. Matthew 28:19-20.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for your provision of life eternally with you when it’s time. Thank you for those who brought me to the truth of your free and gracious provision so I could accept it and choose to pursue discipleship on this side of eternity. I confess that too often I don’t pursue being a disciple because I choose not to deny myself, I choose not to take up what you have for me to take up, and/or I choose not to follow. Please forgive the foolishness of trying to live the Christian life without being a disciple. Help me to follow every step of your lead in being the disciple you intend for me to be. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Have you accepted God’s free and gracious provision of life with Him eternally when it’s time so you can pursue being a disciple on this side of eternity? If no, why have you not accepted His gift? If you are a Christian with the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing with being a disciple? Do you tend to think that discipleship automatically follows becoming a Christian? Do you see discipleship as a choice that is to be made on a daily basis? If you sense the need for change in how you view discipleship and how you pursue being a disciple, how is that going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?