What does Discipleship cost?

Have you ever wondered why Jesus picked who He picked to be His disciples, and if you were living in that time period, would He have picked you?

That question often gains the focus of my attention.  If I had lived in Jesus’ day, would He have chosen me to follow Him.  Since the disciples Christ chose demonstrated a remarkable array of personality profiles, backgrounds, and behavior patterns, it would be hard to justify dismissing our worth or availability on the basis of our personal limitations, ability levels, personality profiles, backgrounds, or interests.  Though it is important, in fact inspiring, to consider those things, another issue must be considered – our willingness to respond.

The life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer has become well known.  His book “The Cost of Discipleship” chronicles the costly response to Christ’s call.  While writing from a concentration camp in Nazi Germany, Bonhoeffer articulated a truth from the context of personal struggle.  His unique perspective was developed from his personal journey.  He had stood alone in the Christian community as a voice condemning the holocaust of death wrought by Hitler and his henchmen.  Powerless to defend himself from the Nazi machine, he found himself in the throes of desperation and difficulty.

The cost his stance inflicted gave him an insight into the challenges we all face as we respond to God’s call.  Discipleship is costly.  It takes our willingness to give everything in submission to the will of God. We must surrender our lives, will, and possessions to One greater than we ourselves.  We must see our lives as ordained by our Creator, purposed by our God, and led by His unchanging hand.  In short, we must choose to surrender to His will in every situation, live out His Word, and allow Him to use us as He sees fit.  We may not understand, live in confusion about His sovereignty, and wonder about the wisdom of our choices as we work through the struggles of this life.  And through it all, we must choose to trust our God implicitly.

So, in a very real way, the defining factor regarding being chosen by Christ is found in our willingness to respond to Him.  If we are willing to respond to His call with total submission to His will, we are candidates to be disciples of Christ.  So today, choose to be His in every regard.  Then you will be chosen by Christ…and you would have been chosen by Him 2000 years ago.


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