For the past five weeks, our church plant has been looking at what it means to be a disciple of Jesus. As we walk through the story of Jesus and people, it amazes me how very different I now see His ministry. Today we looked at Jesus calling Matthew and the ensuing dinner party. Jesus made a priority of intentionally being with those the religious world looked down on. He was called a "friend of sinners", a "glutton and a drunkard" and who knows what else. His compassion and love for the sick is inspiring our group to really think differently about how and who we love.
The tendency is for Christians to love those who look, smell, and act like themselves. We have called people to meet us on our turf and respond to how we live. Jesus met Matthew on his turf and wasn't offended by who he had been. This radical way of loving "those" people is a pointed mandate to live the way of Christ and impact our community. We are looking for new and creative ways to meet people on their turf and live the way of love. This makes discipleship about authentic, compassionate living. There isn't a list of things to do nor a class to learn how the real disciples do it. Simply, it is real people living transparent and humbly for the sake of Christ in the lives of others. What is being a disciple mean to you?