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Meditation - Discovering The Joys Of Discipleship

By Rev Angela C Bosfield Palacious

Most of us are taught to follow instructions, We learn to play on a team and to be guided by the good of the group. If we are humble and teachable, willing to listen and learn, there is much that we do not have to suffer first hand. The role of the mentor or role model is to effectively exhibit certain qualities that assist with the maturation process. Having someone older, wiser, more mature, experienced or enlightened in our lives permits us to grow and develop, drawing on the strength to be derived from their support, and yet becoming more and more capable of making our own decisions. Hence, the need for suitable adults in the lives of our youth.

The best person to follow is Jesus Christ, as there comes a time we must follow our own destiny and this may mean walking alone with the Lord. We have to follow our hearts, listening for God's will for ourselves. We have to embrace our own individuality and unique giftedness, even as we continue to enjoy the benefits and responsibilities of living in community.

Some of the joys of discipleship are as follows:

  1. The blessing of a God who truly loves us, with the cross as confirmation of what the word of God says.

  2. The peace that comes from knowing that the One who knows the future gives us freedom to choose, guidance to choose wisely, forgiveness for poor choices and unconditional love "straight through".

  3. The call to walk in obedience with others who are travelling in the same direction.

  4. The freedom to be different as prompted by the Holy Spirit.

  5. The promise of eternal relationship along with intimate communion while on earth.

  6. The provision of spiritual gifts to assist with the building up of the Body of Christ.

  7. The ability to worship with abandon in private and as appropriate in public.

The theme of "Intentional Discipleship," promoted by the worldwide Anglican Communion for this new church year starting in Advent, will have us all reflecting in a more intensely urgent way, on the topic.

Change comes during discipleship, change that in turn fosters more growth, prayer, work, student, and inspired leadership. Now we see more of Christ reflecting back to us in our spiritual mirrors.

In the workplace, this would be a possible scenario:

  1. Latecomers become more punctual

  2. The half-hearted become more enthusiastic

  3. The dishonest become more trustworthy

  4. The unreliable become persons of their word

  5. The lazy become more productive

  6. The harsh become more diplomatic

  7. The hard-hearted become more compassionate

  8. The rude become more civil and even courteous

  9. The miserable become more pleasant.

In the community, more persons become pace-setters in their own way. The disciples become disciplers of others:

  1. They are not easily intimidated nor do they seek to intimidate others

  2. They bring a spirit of calm and serenity to meetings

  3. They lead by example

  4. They want to mentor others

  5. They are team players but retain their own perspective

  6. They inspire others by their character and conduct

  7. They strive for personal excellence without becoming obsessed with perfection

  8. They give God the credit for all that they accomplish

  9. They do not indulge in unhealthy and unnecessary competition

  10. They bring a spirit of cooperation to joint tasks, aiming for harmony without merely keeping the peace

  11. They are agents of change who have a generational vision, mission and mandate

  12. They have the courage to keep changing and challenge others to do the same.

There is true joy in the Lord's presence and the more we can do to open our arms to embrace the opportunity to know God, the more we will discover the joys of discipleship.

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