5 Ways Jesus Makes it Hard to Follow Him

A friend told me his police academy instructor said, “My job is to get you to quit.” The law enforcement pedagogy – difficulty uncovers commitment, capacity & character, or lack thereof. 

Following Jesus is not all happy-clappy, angelic hovering. I am learning as His follower, I can NOT

• Stay where I am. Jesus said, “Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be.”  A disciple asks Jesus, “Where you going?” and, like Andrew, follows.

• Hold what I treasure. Jesus said to a rich perfectionist, “Sell your possessions, give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then, follow me.” Sell, give and follow was too hard for this man but not for wealthy Joseph.

• Want what I want – Jesus said, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves, take up their cross and follow me.” Deny, take up and follow looks like Matthew.

Luke 9.23 Picture

• Bury dead family ways – Jesus said, “Let the dead bury the dead.” Releasing traditions inhibiting devotion was evident when brothers James and John left the family business to follow Jesus.

• Love Others over God – Jesus said, “Whoever comes to me and does not hate father, mother, wife, children, brothers, sisters, even life itself, cannot be my disciple.”  No wonder for a while his family called Him crazy after Jesus left to be about His Father’s business.

His disciples complained, “This teaching is hard!” Jesus said, “Does this offend you?”  Many stopped following. Jesus then asked his twelve, “You too?”

When we respond like Peter, “Lord, who else? Your words are eternal life. You are the Holy One of God”,  Jesus’ words become Spirit and Life to us.

Jesus calls Kingdom candidates to commit with full capacity to be faithful above all else.

imgres-1CAUTION: To those who want to enroll in the school of Jesus, the wise Professor uncovers 5 reasons His students drop out:

Familiarity ~ Wealth ~ Ego ~ Tradition ~ People

Are you willing to pray, “Spirit of Jesus, show me what’s really behind my ‘I’ll follow you anywhere!’?

Pick from Jesus’ list your #1 hurdle then rise humbly with Him in action this week.

Familiarity – Speak, give or walk outside your “ordinary” ways as Jesus would if He walked in your shoes.

Wealth – Bless a poor person with a ridiculously generous gift.Homeless man

Ego – Meet with two trusted confidants to confess where you often make it about you.

Tradition – Trade a religious, family or cultural tradition for a totally different way to worship or serve God.

People – Replace an easy, regular habit with a sacrificial act of obedience seeking God’s glory not trying to appease your spouse, parents, kids, boss.

Many claim the badge of Jesus. Few stay through His hard training. Honestly, do we want Jesus to forge His character in us as much as we think we do? Right now, are you ready to quit false starts and half-hearted faith and really follow Him?

by Doug Webster

Jesus College – Mentoring Apprentices to Love their Neighbor

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More Jesus College resources

Including the Jesus Conversation App – Jesus College Adjunct Professor Tim Timmons, Sr.

Are You Living a Good Life? (Why Jesus College blog!)

A long time ago, in a land not far away (I live about 20 miles from my first home), I was a 14 year old experimenting with ways to ruin my life, partly because I could and partly because my broken family life left me wanting. My risky business could have ended poorly. Thankfully, I met some people who had a mentor teaching them how to live a good life. I was intrigued. Three years later I went from student to novice teacher. 40 years later I’m still helping others learn how to live a good life.

Starbucks CupWhat is a good life?

Imagine if I ran into you at Starbucks and asked, “How are you today?” and you answered “Good”. Typical. What if I responded, “Why?” Yikes, atypical. Make that a double espresso!

Before your first sip of liquid addiction, I engaged your ontology, your definition of being, your reason to get out of bed. If you hastily concluded, “That’s an easy answer”, I invite you to think about what you think about. Many humans stagger out of bed, consume their coffee and go do what they do believing they have thought long and hard about why they do it. Most have not. And when the day is over, how many people say, “Today was a good day!”? Fewer conclude, “What a great day!” Your checklist for “good” or “great” reveals what matters most to you. It’s the fuel driving you to be good at pursuing the “good life”. What is it? Money? Power? Fame? # of Likes? Sex? Controlling all of the above? Why do bezillions of us lay our head down at night discouraged, depressed, sad, frustrated for not having a good day or worse, resenting others who are living the life we want?

Are you living a good life? If you answer yes, please share with the class. If you answer “Mostly, but I hope to live a better life. I long to deepen the quality and increase the frequency of good in my life”, join me as a fellow traveler on a “good” adventure through the blogging wardrobe.

Professor JC

I’m guessing by the blog name – Jesus College – you know who the professor is in front of the class. Historians, educators, leaders of thought and everyday folks agree overwhelmingly the teacher I met over 40 years ago is history’s most famous, most followed and most influential voice.

The Jesus College blog is my pursuit alongside billions today and billions before us who think a good life was best lived and taught by Jesus 2000 years ago. He remains today as the preferred life guide. For many, He is much more. If a better plan came along, Jesus would be the first one to recommend it. Otherwise, could you trust Him to know what is really good?

Footprints in the Sand 2

Three Commitments…

FIRST, I won’t be religious. I am not trying to convert you to religion. I’m inviting you to discover with me what a good life looks like from the One who has the goods on “good”.

SECOND, I will be practical. I’m not religious but I try to practice what I’m learning religiously. Folks who are good at what they do practiced what they learned for at least 10,000 hours. I read recently “practice makes habit”. Teaching what you’re learning expedites the process. You can’t wing “good”. Good athletes aren’t good because they make good shots. They trained to be good.

THIRD, If you commit to this course, something miraculous might happen. I’ve witnessed thousands of apprentices of Jesus become good people. I’m guessing if you are like me, you not only want to live a good life, you want to be a good person. Students who go to school in the way of Jesus more readily, easily and naturally live a good life because they are becoming good people.

In short, they are good students of Jesus College with a Professor who not only knows good but is good.

New Semester Start

Are you ready to enroll in Jesus College with me? It’s a good school.

Start by subscribing to my blog. (To say thanks, I’ll send you a free PDF of “Living Worry Free” Jesus College course notes.) You can “attend class” via the weekly blog per your schedule in your preferred attire. Along the way I will introduce you to fellow Jesus College Adjunct Professors who have a good grasp on a good life.

Now it’s your turn. Have a “good” day!


Jesus College Logo Final JPEG

by Doug Webster
Jesus College

Jesus College trains & resources leaders to mentor neighbors to love each other like the Master.