The word “disciple” is used quite frequently in the church. But have you ever paused and wondered what it really means? How do you live out daily discipleship?
What is a daily disciple of Christ? A daily disciple of Christ is someone who spends each day seeking to follow the ways of Jesus Christ. It is living a committed life to God’s purposes instead of their own.
If you want to learn more about what daily discipleship is or how to practice it, keep reading along to find out.
What It Is To Be A Daily Disciple Of Christ?
Daily discipleship is where you give up your worldly ways of living your life and surrender your life to Jesus Christ.
Jesus calling Peter to be his disciple is a great example of what this means.
And Simon answered, “Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets.” And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking.Luke 5:5-11 ESV
They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink.
But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish that they had taken, and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon.
And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed him.
At the beginning of chapter 5 in Luke, we read that Peter has been working endlessly all night fishing with no success. But then Jesus comes and performs a miracle. He tells Peter to cast his net into the sea, and he catches a miraculous amount of fish.
Peter realizes Jesus is the Messiah, and then Jesus invites Peter to follow him. He calls Peter to be a fisher of men.
What Peter gave up to follow Jesus was his job as a fisherman. Let’s say you’ve worked a job all of your life that has given just enough of what you needed to pay the bills, pay off debt and provide what you need, but you also feel like you’re in a rut.
Then Jesus shows up and says “Follow me.” This is what Peter encountered when he met Jesus.
Daily Discipleship Requires Sacrifice
Living a life of daily discipleship means putting God first. He is to be first above your family, friends, career, and even your own life.
Jesus makes this message very clear in Luke 9:23.
“And He said to all, ‘If anyone would come after me, let Him deny Himself and take up His cross daily and follow me.”Luke 9:23
To deny ourselves is to turn away from our old way of living in sin and step into a lifetime of following Him instead. That means saying no to the desires of our flesh and saying yes to Jesus. Some examples of desires of the flesh can include drunkenness, pride, judgment, lust, or idolization.
Would you choose things such as these that lead to death, or choose life by following Him?
Picking up your cross daily means choosing Jesus every day. Yes, giving your life to Christ is a one-time decision; that is the moment where we are justified for our sins through His death.
But we are sinful humans and live in a fallen world. Because of that, we need to turn to Him consistently and let Him sanctify us. That means letting Him continue to mold us into the person He wants us to be on a daily basis.
Not only does he come before desires of the flesh that seem sinful, but he comes before even the good things in our lives. That includes the loved ones we hold dearly, the calling or career for your life, and other earthly possessions.
Think of it as gift-giving. When someone gives you a gift, it’s meant to be enjoyed. But think of how it would be if you gave all your attention to the gift itself and gave no appreciation or acknowledgment to the one who gave it to you.
This shows that you value the object more than the relationship with the person who gave you the gift.
It’s exactly like that with God. He delights in giving us good things in our lives, but He desires a relationship with us the most.
Daily Discipleship Means Discipling Others
Daily discipleship also means making more disciples and multiplying God’s kingdom. Jesus’ last words before He ascended into heaven were to go into all the nations and make disciples.
“Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”Matthew 28:19-20
This is the Great Commission He speaks over the disciples. When Jesus says these words, He is inviting us to take part in God’s mission for all nations.
Making disciples isn’t as complicated as some people may think. It is actually more fruitful when it happens throughout the little things in our lives.
Multiplying the Kingdom of God and teaching others to do the same happens as we go about our ordinary daily things. People may sometimes limit the concept of making disciples down to just bringing another person into a one-moment life decision. But making daily disciples also includes continually learning, growing, and developing a better understanding the Gospel together.todaydevotional.com
When we take those little steps towards discipling someone else, we show them God’s character, and a seed is planted.
Daily Discipleship Can Result in Suffering
Daily discipleship can also mean enduring persecution for being a Christian. In this context, taking up our cross daily means holding on to His promises and choosing joy while suffering for the Gospel.
Jesus Himself suffered, even though He knew no sin. Being a daily disciple means following His example, and suffering is no exception.
Jesus said that we will have trouble in this world.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart, I have overcome the world.”John 16:33
The reason we are persecuted is that unbelievers find the Gospel of God’s kingdom offensive. Because of the Fall, we are sinful human beings. And when sin is exposed, or when they are told that they’re wrong, people feel threatened.
Some countries have made Christianity illegal, and persecution in these places is very high. There are even testimonies of Christians who say that being arrested and beaten for the sake of the Gospel is a normal part of their walk.
But there is good news through all of this.
“Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”Romans 5:3-5
Jesus Himself suffered to the point of death. But He overcame death and now lives in His resurrected body. Now we have this hope in Him because He is alive.
Another fruit of enduring persecution is that the more we rely on the Lord, the more we draw closer to Him. There is no other place safer than in the Father’s presence.
God will protect our hearts and souls, and He works something beautiful as we pick up our cross daily. Let Him mold you through the suffering, and you will delight in the reward in Heaven.
How does being a daily disciple of Christ look for you? In what ways is the Holy Spirit asking you to pick up your cross