Tag: disciple

5 Ways To Identify a Disciple of Christ

5 Ways To Identify a Disciple of Christ

To be a disciple of the Savior… what does that mean? The word disciple and the word discipline both come from the same Latin root – discipulus, which means pupil. To be a disciple means to be obedient  to the Savior,. It means to have  self-discipline in what we choose to do and who we choose to become.  How do we know when someone is a disciple of the Savior? Below are 5 characteristics from the scriptures  that help us to understand.

  1. A disciple will be learning.

    Matthew 5:1-2 Jesus  “went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him  And he opened his mouth, and taught them..” We don’t have the luxury of climbing that mountain and listening to Christ in person, but we have the next best thing: the words and testimony of those that have written the gospel of Christ  over the millennia.   A disciple of Christ will be actively searching His teachings. He will not be making excuses that there is no time to read scriptures in his busy day. A disciple spends time daily reading and pondering the words of Christ. Those scriptures have one purpose: for us to read and gain a testimony of Christ. It is through reading the words of Christ and listening for His voice that we become a true disciple.

  2. A disciple will be seeking conversion by ‘doing’.

    He will be trying to be more than he is now through obedience to the laws of God. Jesus told Simon Peter, “I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren” (Luke 22:32). This is Peter He is talking to! Peter the rock, the one who did miracles in His name, who was a teacher and apostle- and yet Jesus tells him he is not yet converted. A testimony of Christ means ‘knowing’ who He really is. Conversion is what happens when testimony becomes so much a part of one that he is a ‘doer’ of the word, not just one who knows the words of Christ. Being a disciple means not only seeking the gospel and learning what Christ would have him do, but seeking to convert himself to become like Christ by doing those things.  A true disciple will be serving others, loving his neighbor as himself, and making preeminent his duty toward God over personal or worldly demands.

  3. A disciple will have charity

    The apostle Paul taught us that “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.”  Charity is the pure Love of Christ. To have charity is not an act, it is state of being. Charity is not only giving one’s old coat to the poor, but giving of oneself unselfishly for the good of another child of God. Charity is not only donating money to a good
    cause, but giving kindness without reward to those who are in need. You will see a true disciple of Christ love others as Jesus loves you. The disciple of the Savior will be doing the right things for the right reason- for the Love of Christ.

  4. A disciple will be a missionary

    A disciple may not have a badge that says he is a missionary, but he will be teaching by word and by example in many ways. A disciple is “The light of the world.”  He will “…Let <his> light so shine before men, that they may see <his> good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” Matthew 5:16 . A disciple of Christ will take opportunities to share the love of Christ with all who will listen. They will demonstrate that love in the choices they make, the attitudes they take, and the feeling of love and optimism that they exude. They will teach faith, baptism, and the need for the gift of the Holy Ghost. The true disciple of the Savior will be someone a good person wants to be around- they have a quality that lifts others despite the circumstances.

  1. A disciple will be actively developing strong family relationships

    The conversion that a disciple seeks requires us to be a loving, charitable husband or wife, father or mother, son or daughter, brother or sister. The most important things we will ever do will be within the walls of our own homes. To identify a disciple of Jesus Christ, look at the way he or she treats family. Leading with kindness, disciplining when needed and then showing afterwards an increase of love to the one that was disciplined, speaking with love and consideration to every member of the family, and teaching each member of the family to have faith and trust in God. These are the ways that a true disciple of Christ treats his or her family.

How do we become disciples ourselves?

By being obedient to the laws and ordinances of the gospel.  We must learn from the words of Christ by reading the scriptures and listening carefully to the promptings of the Holy Ghost. We should be an example of a true Christian by doing His will, and by being a missionary that takes time to teach others. We must have charity and take the time to serve others. We must keep the Sabbath day holy, and help in His church. As we seek to become true disciples of Jesus Christ, we should seek the good part- and then do the things we know are right.

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Two questions to ask yourself: 1. what is the difference between being a ‘Christian’ and being a disciple of Christ?  2. What do I need to do today to become a disciple of Christ?

Moroni 7:48 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true followers of his Son, Jesus Christ; that ye may become the sons of God; that when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope; that we may be purified even as he is pure. 

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Spare the Rod, Spoil the Child?

Spare the Rod, Spoil the Child?

There is a verse (Proverbs 13:24) in the Bible that reads : “He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.” That verse has been used to justify physically punishing children with fists, sticks and belts.

Stop! Just don’t!

The ‘rod’ the verse refers to is a shepherds rod, one that is used to guide sheep and protect the flock from predators.Shepherd guiding sheep Those that have raised sheep know that sheep are followers. They will trust and follow a good shepherd anywhere- just as we desire our children to trust and follow us.

If a shepherd hurts or scares his sheep, however, those sheep will scatter when he comes near.

Hitting sheep with a stick will not get sheep to go where you want them to go- they will run instead of follow. Violence scares a child, and causes resentment. It does not encourage a child to follow out of understanding and love, but to obey out of fear. Just as the rod or staff is used to gently guide a wayward sheep and protect the flock, we must guide our children. Not with pain, but with love and firmness.my-shepherd-psalm-23-29-638

Saying no to beating a child does not mean that discipline can be ignored

Those that ignore a child’s bad behavior, justify it, or allow it to continue, are not showing love, but are showing ignorance, laziness and lack of respect.

He (and she) that loves their children will teach, and chasten when needed. 

Boyd K. Packer has observed that “When a person in a position to correct another fails to do so, he is thinking of himself. Remember that reproof should be timely, with sharpness or clarity…and then showing forth afterwards an increase of love toward him whom thou hast reproved, lest he esteem thee to be his enemy” (D&C 121:43).Christ and the sheep

Discipline is necessary. It is how we keep our children safe, teach them to be productive members of society, and give them the knowledge and habits to be successful and happy throughout their life.

Let me be clear about one thing: when one of my children puts himself or others in danger, I have found that a quick swat on the bottom gets his attention- and gets it fast. I had a two year old child that ran away from me towards a vicious dog and refused to come to me. I quickly chased him down, and he fought me taking him out of danger. He got a very swift swat on the bottom which distracted him enough to quit the tantrum, allowing me to get us both out of danger. That does not happen often, but there are times when unusual circumstances require unusual responses.

The word discipline is closely related to the word disciple, sharing the same root word. A disciple is one who follows. Follow the example of the Good Shepard, and lead so that your little disciples will want to follow. Never cause fear in those who love you.

Remember in your disciplining to LEAD with love.

 

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