Kingdom Principle: To walk in the Light, is to no longer fear the darkness and unknown
|Isaiah 2:1-5||Psalm 122||Romans 13:11-14||Matthew 24:36-44|
Discipleship is about followership. Followership precedes leadership. We are called to leadership in the Kingdom of God. Therefore, we must learn to be disciples of the King, before we can be leaders in the Kingdom. In the post linked above – it was outlined how we must be in movement with the King in order to discover our purpose, through followership, which leads to discovering kingdom servant leadership. There the concepts of Authority & Power were demonstrated by the King and granted to those who are in submission unto His Covenant & Kingdom. This post is not about the end results, rather it is about the participation in the process and the anticipation of the advancement.
We have entered Advent – and the texts of Advent this year (A) are not warm and fuzzy about the birth of a baby in a manger, nor are they the powerful testimonies of the prophets. Rather as you will see they are filled with the tension and desires of those who long for a new reality, yet live in the present moment and must press on without disappointment. This is how we must approach our own journey of discipleship every day. Once I have been washed and redeemed in the blood of Jesus, salvation has come unto me. My identity is secured and complete in the work of the Cross and I have been set free from sin. Yet, this is only the very beginning, a mere first step with Jesus as a disciple has truly no idea what is about to come, they submit their lives to following Jesus expecting to be taught the ways in which they shall go. Here is the tension here found in the text – Never Give Up! & Live as if you have Arrived! This is the tension of Phil 2:12 because of the desires of Phil. 2:13… 12 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.
What does it mean for us to be a disciple? I have spoken elsewhere on the discipline of the body. Here I am refereeing to the same concept, but rather the discipleship of one’s whole being – heart, mind, soul and strength… so that love is made complete. How complete of a disciple of Jesus are you? We must learn to walk in the light, by putting on the armor of light. We are the light of the world, but does the world know it? If so, then the world will seek you to lead them. We have power in our prayers, but do you know it? If so the world will seek your prayers for peace and prosperity. We have hope in this dark and dying world, but do you share it, or do you gratify your own desires ? The world will want you to gratify your desires and even consider it foolish that you don’t , for in this the world can minimize the difference between you and them. Discipleship is to set you apart, (lead you to holiness) but this is the very reason that many fail to enter the process. They fear the outcome. Have you considered the outcome of fully committing to walking the road of discipleship?
What if your authority increases in the Kingdom such that you see and discern all lies? How might your work and family relationships change? What if your power increases in the kingdom such that you speak a word and it becomes reality. How might the words of your mouth become guarded and useful? What if the movement of the Holy Spirit becomes so vibrant in your life that all that you once considered secure is now fluid? (cross reference these questions with the post on followership)
What are you afraid of? Where there is fear… there is a need for healing…. Healing is a matter of authority rather than power and walking in the light brings to light your authority. Authority is relationally based, and this is where the discipleship process becomes authentic . To be a disciple requires you to have a “discipler”. This relationship need not be with someone who is an expert, only that they have experience in being discipled. God promises to disciple His People so that we may walk in His paths. God is the only true discipler, for it is he alone through the power of the Spirit who works to change one’s heart and life. Therefore the light reveals the truth and overcomes all fear in love.
What does all this have to do with Advent? Discipleship is a process we never complete. YET – because we have the complete gift of salvation we walk in perfection. Advent is a season that we celebrate each year anticipating the coming of the King (we cling to the inauguration of the Kingdom) yet our conviction is in the Hope that the final Advent (second coming) will come in much the same manner as the first. (The completion of the Kingdom that is not possible without it.) To further understand this process read this Kingdom Poem –
Do you desire to be Discipled to walk in the Light? If so – have you asked God to teach you to walk in His ways? Often God will bring one of his Kingdom ServantLeaders into your life to increase their discipleship as well. There is no perfect discipleship process, so embrace the incomplete perfection knowing that both the “disciple” and the “disciple” are mutually discipled, because it is God who is doing the transformation. Therefore there is no need to fear your role in the discipleship process regardless of which side of the discipleship process you are on. So – be prepared to become a discipler, and to be discipled in this Kingdom journey.