“A disciple is someone who has moved from being the recipient of the church’s mission to being responsible for the church’s mission.” ~ Unknown
What does it really mean to be a disciple of Jesus in today’s world? Being a disciple is one of those “where the rubber meets the road” kinds of experiences. We can call ourselves disciples until the cows come home; however, if we do not do the work that God has entrusted to us, we are not disciples, we are merely observers.
An observer is an outsider. A disciple is an insider.
There are many people in churches throughout the world who call themselves disciples. However, they never participate in the mission of the Church. Instead, they gladly accept any benefit that comes from their being Church members. But when asked to perform some of the works of their Church, they shy away or, sometimes, leave. They are along for the ride.
Being a disciple is akin to being an action verb. A disciple must be busy about doing. A disciple should never be passive. There is too much work to be done in order for Jesus’ vision to become fully realized. He entrusted His vision to us when He took some of His disciples up a mountain and said goodbye to them.
Jesus told His followers that His job was done and that He was entrusting His job, His vision, to them. It would be their job to go out into the world and tell the Good News. Jesus promised that they would be given what they needed to accomplish that work through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus extended the invitation. It was up to the His followers to accept it. If they did, they would show themselves, truly, to be His disciples. The same holds true to this very day. Jesus continues to call us to follow in His footsteps, to continue His mission, to proclaim the Good News.
If we are going to call ourselves followers — disciples — we have to accept that mandate of Christ and go out to do His work. This is not a time to sit back and rest on the laurels of the Church. It is a time to take up the work given to us and to continue it.
Jesus is looking for people who are willing to do the work entrusted to them. He is looking for us to accept the task and go out into the world. If we do so, He promises to be with us and to give us all the help that we need. The Holy Spirit will be with us if we set out to accomplish Jesus’ work.
FAITH ACTION: Take responsibility for the work Jesus has called you to do in continuing His mission.