Summer of Discipleship
Make me to know your ways, O LORD;
teach me your paths.
Last Sunday evening, in the middle of the worship gathering, I stood in the back of the sanctuary wondering why I was a pastor. In that moment I wanted to do anything else. If you’re like me, feelings of inadequacy and anxiety often cloud your soul. For this, we need discipleship. Christian discipleship is simple and yet so profoundly difficult. Like me, you’ve been “discipled” by the culture. More than we like to admit, we value people, marriage, money, work, sex, and our time by the world’s standards. Disordered love clouds the soul. Our anxiety, pride, and lust are the result of loving the world way too much.
What can we do? As Christians, we remind ourselves and each other of the gospel. Like David, in the psalm, we go to God, with all of our sin, and ask him to show us his ways, to lead our steps, to help us listen. One of the first things we can remember is that our growth in Jesus is not an individual pursuit and discipleship models that reality. Refuse to listen to the array of voices that keep you from coming clean and getting honest. One of the most freeing moments is when you know and are known by other people. Discipleship is war because it includes a vulnerability with other humans. In a culture that embraces facade, honesty is almost always absent, and that absence lingers creating a perpetual loneliness.
Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.
This past Sunday, after the gathering, I was able to open up with my wife, a couple trusted friends, and God about the despair I was feeling. I’m grateful because they encouraged and reminded me of my calling and the truth of gospel ministry. I can’t be a faithful witness of Jesus apart from Christian discipleship and neither can you.
Wes is responsible for preaching and leading the West Congregation. He is married to Amber Thompson and has one daughter: Stella. Wes has a B.A. in Strategic Communications from Ohio State University and is currently studying theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School.