Discipleship for Now

Discipleship for Now
Keep open house; be generous with your lives.  By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16 (MSG)
 

I love people. I love being with people – learning, listening, sharing stories of how life has happened to us – and any one who knows me knows I love to talk.  Some of my best memories are conversations around the table. Saturday mornings there was always someone dropping by to sit and talk at my parents’ kitchen table. My grandparents’ table was the same. People gathering. My other grandma had a TV tray and a Bible open, and always had time for a talk.  I love how being together with others brings conversation in some form or another and I love how God, through conversation, shows me that I am not alone, and that there is someone else, just like me, trying to figure things out.

I imagine that when John and the boys were hanging out with Jesus, they talked a lot about stuff that was going on and the stuff that they didn’t get and the stuff that was bugging them or overwhelming them.  I imagine that they shared where they had come from, what their parents and friends and teachers had taught them.  I imagine that Jesus sat and listened and I imagine that He smiled some and nodded often.  I imagine laughter and tears. I imagine that while He walked with them He shared even more than we know by way of the scriptures.  I imagine it was beautiful and rich and hard and confusing, because, let’s face it, they were doing life together and life, as it is today, was mixed with the good and the hard. When I see the word “discipleship” I immediately think of the Twelve that walked and sat and lived with Jesus. They were chosen to do life with Him and learn from Him. Why? That they would turn around and share everything He had taught them.
When I look at my life today, and how that Word applies, it takes me a moment to connect to the now.  How is my life anything like John, Luke or Matthew’s life?   Then God does what He always does with me: He gently takes me back, reminds me of where I have been and how I have come to this point, to now.  He opens my eyes to who’s sitting at the table with me, who I am doing life with, who I have done life with, where I have done life and it’s in this moment that “discipleship” becomes real to me. I see it, because I am walking in it.

Day by day I am walking with women who in so many ways turn my heart and eyes towards Jesus. How?  By how they love their husbands, how they talk with their children, how they forgive, how the laugh at themselves, how they speak truth about being exhausted, fed up, overwhelmed and cry out for help.  They have been generous with their lives, inviting me in, opening up and being real. 

In the company of women I have learned to love Christ and to share Christ in the midst of the day.  I have seen how doing life with others, is discipleship in the most simple and ordinary, but sweetest of ways.

This. All of this. Walking into each day knowing that I can do this not on my own, but with others who are trying to do the same thing – love Jesus here, today, right now.  We can gather at the table, the park or the aisle of the grocery store. We can share the bumps, the questions, the celebrations, and the heartbreak.  This. This is “discipleship”. Knowing I am not alone. I am part of a community, surrounded by others trying hard to do the very same thing – love Jesus in the here and now.

About joymsteed

"This is the day the Lord has made I will rejoice and be glad in it." Psalm 118:4 I love this verse but the problem is I, more often than not, spend so much time rushing through the day that I don't think I really embrace what God is telling me through this verse. So, I am deciding to stand still or at least go slow and enjoy the days and the blessings that come, all of them; the ordinary and the extraordinary, the hard and the good, catching the moments wrapped up in each and giving thanks for the journey I am on. I am blessed to venture forward with my husband of 20 years and our two daughters, life has been hard and good and taken us places we never imagined we would go - both standing still and moving. God has been good and now as we enter a new stage, that point where our family road begins to have forks that are leading our girls to begin chapters in their stories that are separate from our story and although this excites me it also makes me wonder what's next for this mom, where do I go from here and what will this next chapter look like for me? I don't have the answers yet, what I do know though is that God is good and I know that He is going to lead and I will obediently follow, leaning in, standing still and rejoicing in the days ahead, the good and the hard days, the ordinary and the extraordinary days and the blessings wrapped in each. Thanks for stopping by and joining in my journey!

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