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The Lenten Journey 2015 – Determined Discipleship

MDRibbins+copyJohn 11:1-16

It’s easy to follow Jesus, as long as He’s popular in the places where you’re following
— a lesson His disciples learned while watching the course of His ministry.

“ Called to be fishers of men? How cool to hang with Jesus!
Watching a temple crowd pick up rocks to stone Him, not so great.
Helping to feed 5000 with a bag lunch? Amazing experience!
Castigated by Pharisees for picking grain on the Sabbath, what a royal pain!”

Let’s be honest: for all of the joys that are available in and through a relationship with
Christ, the journey itself is often a succession of lofty highs and devastating lows.
When we preach, sing, pray until fire falls it ignites euphoric worship or repentance.
It’s a GREAT time in the Lord! Then, within the next hour someone who is faithless
(or feckless in their faith) wields sharp words at you deftly enough to cut to the core of
what was your triumphant moment.

In that instant, it seems that discipleship truly stinks. The dilemma for the true disciple is, do I have faith to make it through the valley times? Can Jesus count on me when the chips are down?

An example to follow in today’s text is Thomas. Look at John 11:16, and witness one stony display of resolute discipleship where the man also known as Didymus decides he’s willing to follow Jesus even at the risk of personal sacrifice. He says, “Let us go too, that we may die along with Him.”

Is your conviction so strong, your determination so great, and your instinct for self-preservation so fully abandoned that you can mirror Thomas’ words in your heart?

Prayer:
Lord, increase our boldness to live the lyrics we’ve often sung:
“I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back, no turning back.” Amen

Mark David Ribbins
Cleveland, Ohio
Website: www.facebook.com/jazzpreacher



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  1. LF Craig says:

    Yes Lord Jesus that’s the question. I will go all the way is what we sing in our songs. I was encouraged.

  2. Rev. Davey Birt says:

    Amen to this word. This is a confirmation for what God has laid on my heart. Just like Palm Sunday, it was easy to praise and worship then, but how do you worship and follow just a week later!!!

  3. Pastor Delphine Lynetta Vasser says:

    Thank you for sharing, your ministry gifts with the body of Christ. Truly enjoyed the Word from the Lord!!!

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