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Discipleship? Part 2


What is discipleship? part 2 What’s discipleship all about? How can I be an effective disciple in high school and college?

Shayna Answers:

Dear Just Wondering,
Last week we said that discipleship has three essential parts: studying the Bible, exercising faith, and witnessing to others. This week we'll elaborate on how to witness and be an effective disciple.
According to 2 Corinthians 5:17, once we accept God into our hearts‹or become disciples‹we are a "new creation." Through the eyes of faith we will view the world differently. As a result, our desires, our aspirations, and sometimes even our likes and dislikes will change. We might go on a mission trip, join a street ministry, or find other ways to witness about our newfound love and commitment to God.
Despite these changes, though, other parts of our life won't change. We'll still attend the same school with the same people and same friends. Especially if you're not attending a Seventh-day Adventist academy or college, it's possible that you are surrounded by people who don't believe in God. That's OK!
By Jesus' example God showed us that our Christianity isn't something that we can lose or that people can taint (see Mark 2:17). Real disciples go to places that aren't the most comfortable and do things that really test their commitment in order to win others for Christ. Your school may be your God-appointed mission field.
Start by building friendships in abundance. As long as there is one single thing that you can build a relationship on, don't discriminate based on the rest of the things that you don't have in common. Avoid thinking such thoughts as, Shelby? She drinks so much. I can't hang out with her! Or, No way! Hadon's gay! I don't want to talk to him! Concentrate on meeting people where they are. Remember that not everyone at your school will be at the same level of spiritual understanding that you are. In fact, most of them won't be. Don't judge them based on behaviors they can change (Romans 15:1, 2). If you do, you're misrepresenting God (1 Corin- thians 8:12). Build friendships that allow people to like you for who you are, too. Then they'll have the opportunity to ask about God when they're ready.
Matthew 13 reminds us that there are some people who are ready to hear the word, some that may ask to hear it after months or years, and some who will never care. Only God sees the readiness of a person's heart (1 Samuel 16:7). Your job is to show by your love that God lives in you (Matthew 5:16; 1 John 3:18, 19). That's it.
If you do this, you might be the only one not drinking, not sleeping around, or not trying drugs, but your friends will know that you are a disciple of Christ, because of your actions (John 15:19; Romans 12:2; Titus 2:11-13). When they notice a difference in you‹and believe me, they will‹you'll get the opportunity to share the love of God with them.
Until then, remember that God is with you, and He is using you as a disciple (Hebrews 13:5; Isaiah 45:2; Matthew 28:18-20).

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