When I tell people I’m spending this summer in Australia, their first question is almost always, “For what?” And here’s the simple answer: to disciple.
This school year has been full of lessons on top of lessons centering on what it means to be a disciple and what it looks like to answer Jesus’ final command on earth, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…”
It all began after listening to Andy Stanley’s sermon series titled “Christian” this summer. He explains that the word “Christian” is ambiguous today. This word can mean something completely different to many people, depending on the environment they grow up in. For some, it means someone who attends church on a regular basis. To others it might mean “American”, or arrogance and hypocrisy, or someone who doesn’t cuss or sleep around. Rarely do people agree on what a Christian is, because so many people who know nothing about Jesus Christ are claiming Christianity as their identifier.
But do you know what people don’t argue about? What a disciple is.
Jesus’ followers did not refer to themselves as Christians. People outside of the faith pegged Jesus’ followers with the word “Christian” as a negative term. But Jesus called the people who followed Him, disciples. There is a reason Jesus says, “Go therefore and make disciples” instead of “Go therefore and make Christians.” Jesus did not want any ambiguity. He wanted people to follow Him.
So that is what I want this summer to be about—giving God the glory by making disciples. Whether for the first time or the tenth time, I am looking forward to showing other people what a life committed to following Jesus is like.
The cool thing is that I don’t have to wait until I get to Australia to do that. I was called to do this the moment I decided to follow Jesus. I, like every other disciple, have been expected to be making disciples since the beginning of our faith in Jesus Christ. So, how are we making disciples now? How are we orienting our lives so that we can help others know this all-satisfying joy and glory we get to share in?
If I am not discpling now, I have no business going across the world and putting on an act. Discipling is what marks a true disciple. I pray this summer will only be a continuation of the life I live right now.