First published January 17, 2013
A bunch of guys, sitting around a campfire, laughing with Jesus. That’s what it was like. Or a group of women and men sitting on a hillside, trying to figure out what the truly good life looks like, with Jesus offering counsel, providing examples, challenging assumptions.
We make being a disciple really complicated. So complicated that many of my friends think they don’t know enough. So we keep reading, keep taking classes, keep talking in earnest voices about what might possibly count.
And so I’ve been trying to figure out the one-click version of disciples. In the same way that Amazon makes buying books incredibly simple with their “1-click“, I want to find the simple approach to being a disciple.
I thought about that group on the hill, laughing, crying, amazed at the way Jesus taught. He was confident. Practical. Thoughtful. Provocative Everyone there downloaded the ebook into their memories, as easy as an Amazon download.
Jesus finished that hillside conversation with a simple picture. The people who heard what he said and did it were like a man building a house on a rock. The people who merely listened and thought, “That was interesting. What else can I listen to?” were, Jesus said, like a man building a house on sand.
It’s easy to keep buying books. Shelf-building $2.99 a time. But you aren’t a reader when you buy. You are a reader when you read. I’m not a disciple when I listen. I’m a disciple when I do.
Doing isn’t measured by grim as much as grime. The people on the hillside, several of them, stayed together. They laughed and cried as they learned and listened and did what Jesus said. They didn’t get it right all the time. But in community they got better at following.
Whole life challenging.