The Invitation to Follow
“Anyone who wants to be My disciple must follow Me, because My servants mustbe where I am. And the Father will honor anyone who serves Me.” – John 12:26 NLT (Emphasis mine)”To follow means to acknowledge Jesus in His entirety. Yes, He is Savior, but He also said that to follow Him meant to obey Him.” – from Real-Life Discipleship
You can accept Jesus as Savior without ever making Him Lord. To be a disciple, Jesus must come first. Everything else comes after Him. We must follow His lead. He must be both our Savior and our Lord.
STEP ONE: HEAD LEVEL
1. Disciples must acknowledge Jesus as Lord and follow Him as our head.
This head-level change challenges everything from our worldview to our priorities. This is one of the main stumbling blocks in moving from Jesus as Savior to Jesus as Lord. If I am not willing to change my worldview and priorities to line up with His, I can never be His disciple. Instead, I will end up settling for something less that fits what I already believe based on what I have been taught. That’s called religion. We end up being disciples of a denomination, or a preacher, or a political party, but not His disciples.
2. Following Jesus means leaving some things behind.
Then He said to them all: “If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for Me will save it. What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self? If anyone is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.” – Luke 9:23-24
Jesus calls me to leave my “self ” – selfish ambitions, selfish way of life, worldly gain, fear of ridicule – and follow Him. This means moving out of my comfort zone. It means setting down my worry, anxiety, judgmentalism and negativity and looking for opportunities to meet the needs of others, to be more generous, to show mercy and a gracious spirit, and to display a positive, affirming attitude.