Tag Archives: discipleship

“After proclaiming the Message in Derbe and establishing a strong core of disciples, they retraced their steps to Lystra, then Iconium, and then Antioch, putting muscle and sinew in the lives of the disciples, urging them to stick with what they had begun to believe and not quit, making it clear to them that it wouldn’t be easy: ‘Anyone signing up for the kingdom of God has to go through plenty of hard times.'”  (Acts 14:21-22, The Message)

Expectations.  Set forth clear expectations today, and you will avoid a great deal of misunderstanding and disappointment tomorrow.

As disciples of Jesus, we are told numerous times in the scriptures to expect hardship, resistance, and trial for the sake of the Good News.  Difficulties come with being a citizen of heaven.  Expect it.

We are also told numerous times in the scriptures to expect the presence of God’s Holy Spirit in every circumstance, to empower, to cheer, and to guide us.

Are our expectations as God’s people based on God’s word, or are our expectations based on something else?  – Luther

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“Remain in me, as I also remain in you.  No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine.  Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.”  (John 15:4, NIV)

According to God’s word (Galatians 5:22-23a), the fruit of the Spirit — that is, the outward expression of God’s presence within us — is this: Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

It may take a while for a tree to actually produce the fruit it was created to bear; and it may take us a while to mature into the disciple whose life is known for love, joy, peace, and the other manifestations of God’s life within us.  However, we shall never realize our destiny in this regard without abiding in Christ.

Make Him the One in whom you “live, move, and have your being” (Acts 17:28), and your life will bear fruit.  Guaranteed.  – Luther

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“‘Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be.  My Father will honor the one who serves me.'”  (John 12:26, NIV)

To serve Jesus is to follow Jesus. To follow Jesus is to be with Jesus.

It is not possible to truly serve Jesus without also following Him.  If our service consists only of isolated acts — even sacrificial isolated acts — without a commitment to also go where He goes; and to do as He directs; that service is deficient.

To be a true servant of Jesus is to voluntarily subordinate our will to the will of the One being served.  This type of service cannot be rendered at a distance.  It is intimate.  It is persistent.  – Luther

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