~By: Krista Steuber~
I wanted to share my journey of being discipled and what it looked like when it unfolded in my life. This all happened very recently for me, just in about the past year. I became a Christ-follower in the beginning of 2018, but my journey through discipleship actually started a few months before that. Prior to all of that, I was a believer, but God was in the background of my life. I was raised Catholic, but I never had a relationship with Jesus.
So it all began when my new friend and neighbor invited me to join the Bible study she was attending. The study was already at about the halfway point, but that didn’t stop her from inviting me. I had never gone to one before and had no idea what to expect, but I wanted to go. She also invited me to go to church with her and her family, and I said yes again.
The Bible study and church services really stimulated my spiritual appetite. I was spiritually hungry, but I don’t think I realized how much so at that point. After the study was over, I completed the first half that I had missed on my own. I started reading my Bible after years of it being unopened. I also watched past sermons from church online.
That same friend led a Bible study at her house right after Christmas, and that was the transformation point for me. God used that study to shift my perspective and give me new lenses. He showed me the purpose of the painful time I had gone through just the year before. He drew me back to Him, and I began to run after Jesus from this point.
I wanted more; I wanted to be spiritually fed - I craved it.
I continued to go to church. I read Scripture with a new understanding and listened to commentary that helped give me better insight. I read devotionals. I signed up for another Bible study.
The friendships that I started to develop with the women in my Bible studies were unlike any others I had ever experienced in my life. They wanted to get to know me on a deeper level and asked questions to really get to know me. I felt safe opening up and sharing my struggles. They wanted to pray for me. They were sincere and genuine. I felt a real sense of connection and family. I learned so much from them about what it meant to follow Christ. And, they challenged me to do more.
The topic of discipleship was a part of that next Bible study, and I wanted to learn more. Jesus was calling me to go make disciples, and I wanted to do just that.
That’s when another shift began to happen for me. I still wanted and needed to be fed spiritually, but that wasn’t my only goal now. I wanted to go and make disciples, but how? I didn’t really know what to do or how to do it. It seemed both simple and complex at the same time.
But of course God was faithful, and He showed me.
A friend was planning an upcoming study of the book Multiply: Disciples Making Disciples by Francis Chan, so I jumped at the chance to study the book with her.
God also put something on my heart - I wanted and needed a mentor. I knew I needed someone to help me mature spiritually and to help push me out of my comfort zone to do more. And, of course, God had already shown me who my mentor was going to be. I was drawn to her because of the way she lived her life - her spiritual maturity and love for God and people were clear as day. Discipleship is her lifestyle.
So now, I’ve been following her example. My lifestyle is intentional for Christ. I make a lot of mistakes, but I keep on learning, and I keep on going.
So, I go out and “do.” I invite women out for coffee or lunch and am purposeful with getting to know them on a deeper level. I’m much more transparent than I’ve ever been. I share things that I’ve struggled with when I think it could help another woman. I share my testimony when the time is right. I invite women to go with me to Bible studies and conferences. I’ve gotten a bunch of no’s to my invites, but that doesn’t mean I’ve given up on those women.
When God puts something on my heart to do or gives me an opportunity, I say yes. Most of what I’m doing is way out of my comfort zone. My personality temperament is a double introvert (Phlegmatic/Melancholy), so God is really stretching me, but I rely on Him for support, and He is right there! I have also seen that being obedient has led to God giving me more opportunities. I’m doing leadership training now so I can lead Bible studies. I think I’m equally excited and scared to lead, but I know God’s in control, and He will guide me.
I’ve learned that your journey with Christ is always an amazing adventure, full of learning and maturing, and I am so grateful for all of it!