Being a genuine disciple of Jesus is more about who we are than what we do. The real character of a person is manifested in what he or she mentally dwells on or does when no one else seems to know. God knows all about our character and our level of spiritual maturity.
The wonderful fact is that He is always willing to change us, to make our character more like His, if we come to Him in humility and repentance. Because of His grace and love for us, God wants to bless us abundantly with spiritual blessings and He does when we are in right fellowship with Him (John 15:10-11).
Oswald Chambers once said, “Jesus calls service what we are to Him, not what we do for Him. Discipleship is based on devotion to Jesus Christ, not on adherence to a belief or creed.” This truth was illustrated in the attitude of Mary Magdalene when she saw Christ at the tomb soon after His resurrection.
It is possible to know all about doctrine and yet not know Jesus in an intimate love relationship. Mary knew very little doctrine as compared to the pious Pharisees, but when she heard His voice as He called her by name (John 20:16) she could hardly contain her emotion of love. Mary was so expressive Jesus asked her to turn loose of him. She experienced this abundant joy because she loved Jesus with all her heart.
When the disciples left for other activities even after seeing the empty tomb, Mary remained and was first to actually see the risen Savior.
A primary expression of genuine discipleship is one’s desire to know regular, uninterrupted fellowship with Christ. The secret of experiencing the wisdom and power of Christ and the ability to reflect Christ in our work with people is bound by our intimate connection with Christ in the place of private and unhurried communion with Him.
More of our devotional time should be spent listening for the Holy Spirit to reveal truths from God’s holy word instead of telling God what we want Him to do.
God can make Himself known to us in the place of prayer if we wait to hear what He wants to say. Getting our requests answered is not the primary motive of prayer.
As we practice life-altering communion with Jesus, our perception of people will change because we will be able to see them through the eyes (love) of our Savior. Then, we can do ministry from the righteous motive of love for Jesus.
We will become more concerned about what people think of Christ than what others feel about us.
That I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings … Philippians 3:10