Leading Women: Why Discipleship Matters

I don't think I've shared about this with y’all, yet. Which baffles me because it's been such a huge part of my life over the past 3 years. Or so I thought. Because as I looked back, I realized this has been infused in my life for well over a decade. 

I believe every woman wants to be led, and some women, in return, want to lead others. 

Discipleship has changed my life. Radically. I have been taught, encouraged, mentored, sharpened, equipped, challenged, corrected and empowered through the process of discipleship. Naturally, my mother and grandmother influenced my life first and foremost, but other women, too, have entered my life, some for only a short season, and have done the same. Their influence has now led me to lead other women. And my heart soars at the thought: this is what I get to do. You, my friend, can do it, too. You can be led and lead. It's not too late. But it will take work. 

 ALL PHOTOGRAPHY BY JORDAN RIVERA

Now, if you began reading this post thinking I'd be referring to something else and now are thinking, "I don’t want anyone to lead me. I do what I want! I don't need to learn anything from anyone." Can I just be blunt with you now and tell you, well, it's too late. Because truth of the matter is you are already being influenced, taught and shaped by something or someone. That celebrity whose life facts you've memorized and read updates on weekly, that Instagram account you check daily, those articles you read, the things you watch, the music you listen to... it all influences you and you, my friend, are it's student. 

It was very common back in the day to 'sit under someones teaching', for the jewish culture, some would actually sit at the feet of their rabbi (teacher) as they taught. They would then grow in age and wisdom, training to one day be a rabbi themselves.

Kind of like a plumber. Yes, a plumber. If you know a plumber, they have had to complete their apprenticeship in order to obtain their plumbing license. They have had to sit under someone else's teaching for hours and hours in order to successfully carry out the tasks of the trade. And one day, they too may have a pupil of their own, sitting under their teaching, eager to gain the practical knowledge necessary.

Jesus himself modeled discipleship (mentorship, apprenticeship, or whatever you want to call it) and was the very one that later would command it. Noticed I didn't say suggest or advise it. No. He commands it. And if we claim to love Jesus, we should obey his commands, right? (1 John 2:4-6 -> Here's how The Message puts it.) So, if you claim to love Jesus, are you obeying his command?

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.
— Matthew 28: 19-20

Now we all love that last part, don’t we? Where Jesus says, “...surely I am with you always, to the very end of age”. 
[Insert all the warm and fuzzies.]

Yet we fail to notice this promise comes only after a command. The command to make disciples of all nations, teaching them to obey the commands Jesus has given us. 

Jesus had spent 3 years with 12 disciples, teaching them how to pray, encouraging them to obey God’s commands, correcting them when wrong, empowering them to serve those that were hurting. For 3 years he walked along side 12 other men, discipling them until the day he would commission them to do the same.

 Photography Credit:  Jordan Rivera

Photography Credit: Jordan Rivera

So who are you discipling? Who have you taken the time to sit down with and teach? 

Who is discipling you? Who is teaching you how to pray, worship, fast, give, serve, share the gospel, love or tame your tongue? Who are you teaching these things to? Remember, these relationships aren't just vital for our growth, they are a command and how Jesus has commissioned us to grow His kingdom.

I can't express to you how the women who have taken the time to teach me have changed my life. Nor can I fully put into words how fulfilling and rewarding (and also challenging, but in a good way) it has been to now lead other women in discipleship.

I want to further share personal experiences and stories. Stories sometimes help us get it. So join me here again next week to hear about what it was like for me to be discipled. 

Join me as I continue sharing why discipleship is truly important and share tips on actually doing it and not just talking about it.

[I want to also invite you to post below any questions you may have about being discipled and discipling someone else. I will do my best to answer your questions in my next post.]

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