day 18

CULTURE OF DISCIPLESHIP

For me, discipleship has been something that I have learned to value and seek out more and more. I have been blessed to have been under influential leaders and be part of amazing church communities. Overtime, I have learned that discipleship isn’t just a group to be part of or a meeting to attend. It’s a “yes” to doing life with others, which isn’t always pretty or easy. I have actively chosen to seek out mentors and people that could speak into my life, in the good and bad times.

Discipleship means choosing to be vulnerable with those around me daily. It means accepting feedback on how others receive me and staying teachable through it all. It means intentionally positioning myself in a safe place that is my community, where I can take ownership for my mistakes and exercise obedience in pursuing reconciliation. I have grown so much from choosing to say yes daily to discipleship.

If I’m being honest, I have had many opportunities to say “no” to discipleship, even seasons where I would be justified in my decision. I’ve learned many lessons the hard way, which although painful, has increased my hunger for growth and shown me the importance of discipleship. Discipleship is sometimes messy, but to live out greatness and truly thrive into being all that God has for us, we must have voices of encouragement and hands that guide us when we need it the most.

I don’t look at discipleship as just submission to a leader, but rather a partnership. Jesus had influence over His disciples, not because He sat at the head of the table but because He walked with them, daily. The leaders in my life walk alongside me, seeing my blind spots, and help shape me into living my fullest potential.

It has been easy to connect and live out discipleship at C3 NYC, in spite of being there for such a short time. Once I discovered that the heart of C3 NYC truly is for community and one of their core values is feedback – I knew that I could dive in headfirst. Discipleship to me is simply reckless love. The way Jesus took risks and chose those considered “less than” to society. He chose to walk with them through their mess with a love that empowered greatness to come forth. Discipleship has allowed me to experience God’s reckless love and in return encourages me to freely give it away. I would sum it up in saying that in many ways, discipleship is love fueled by faith and covered in grace.

— EDWIN RODRIGUEZ

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