At some point in our lives we have heard the voice of our Savior calling our name. Just as those first disciples did years ago, we have followed Him. It is a good place to be, a place that we don’t want to leave. Jesus sent His disciples out into the world to continue the work that the Father had given to Him. He didn’t wait till they had completed all their studies. As soon as he could, he sent them out. They came back amazed at what they were able to do.
This is where it ends for many in our churches today. But it is only the beginning. Discipleship is a life-long journey. We learn, we go out, and we come back amazed. The learning never stops; at least it should not stop. As we grow in our faith, as we go out into the world, we learn more. We understand things that we didn’t understand before. We see things that we didn’t see at earlier times in our lives. We learn more and continue the journey.
The same should be true for the church, the Body of Christ. The body is one body with many members. Each is important to the others. But, to be truly healthy and vital, we must go out into the world beyond ourselves. And just as we grow and learn in our doing, so should the church.
This would seem to point us toward understanding that we would have new ideas and see new ways to go about the work of Christ in the world. The world we live in today is not the same world that it was a few short years ago. What worked then, what was needed then, is not what will work today and what is needed today.
A healthy, vital body will always be going out. A healthy and vital body will always be growing, learning and practicing new things.
A life as a disciple of our Lord Jesus will always point us outward into our world. A disciple is also one who is growing, maturing in their faith. It is hard work. It takes discipline. The apostle Paul compares such a life to the life of a marathon runner. We must prepare for the journey, and then go; and we must persevere and keep our eyes on the prize, to be with Christ in eternity.
Lord, you have called us and sent us. We pray that you will continue to mold and shape us into the likeness of your Son, Jesus. Amen.
Always, to God be the glory!