Discipleship links and resources:
Jesus’ last commission to his followers was, ‘Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey all that I have commanded you’ (Matthew 29.19-20). Jesus’ words are both an invitation and a command to each of us to deepen our relationship with him. It doesn’t matter who we are, young or old, new to faith or mature, failing or succeeding – being a disciple is not just for a special few, it is for us all. So what does it mean for you or me to be a disciple?
We begin our lives as disciples as we respond to the call of Jesus: ‘follow me’. We are called so that we may then also be sent to share in God’s mission in the world. This understanding of a disciple is rooted in our baptism in which we are
- called by name
- sent with the promise that the Spirit will be with us to equip and guide us.
A disciple is a learner who is seeking to work out how to live their life in the way that Jesus would want them to. Having a Christian faith affects every part of our life.
Bishop Rachel reminds us that this means that the primary places where we will express and live out our calling to be disciples is not in church but in the world. In her first sermon as bishop, she quoted Michael Jinkins who says of our baptism: ‘we are soaked to the skin in the death of Christ. Our union with Christ drips from us…… We trail wet footprints wherever we go; we never dry off’. (The Church Faces Death p.23).