By Dr. Wayne Schmidt

Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me." – Luke 9:23

Discipleship is so daily. It’s not something I am or do just once in a while. Instead, it’s living out the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) and the Greatest Commandment (Matthew 22:37-39) constantly. It’s a lifelong process of learning to obey all that God calls us to.

This past January marked 32 years that my accountability partner Paul Anthes and I have met every other week. He lives out his calling in the marketplace and I live out mine in vocational ministry, but our mutual discipleship relationship encourages us both to live out what we say is important to us.

This “iron-sharpens-iron” relationship has not made us perfect, but it has “raised our batting average” in daily living out our priorities.

I’m also blessed to disciple a younger man. He says he benefits from my seasoned perspective (a polite way of pointing out the 25+ years between us). If my maturity is a plus for him, his intensity and intentionality in following Jesus are an inspiration to me.

And I’m prayerfully seeking a person I can disciple toward a relationship with God or someone who is brand new in their relationship with Jesus Christ. I’m seeking to overcome obstacles like an irregular schedule due to travel, because I take seriously the command to go and make disciples.

At one point the church I served, Kentwood Community, scheduled its first service at 9:23 a.m. We’d often get the question, “Why not 9:15 a.m., or 9:30 a.m.?” It was just the question we loved to answer, because this service was particularly shaped for discipleship, based on the words of Jesus in Luke 9:23: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”

In The Wesleyan Church we celebrate every time a disciple makes a disciple. How are you living this out daily?