The Journey of a Disciple at Asbury
Welcome to The Journey
As a Christian, we need to actively follow Jesus and learn from his life and teachings as a disciple. The Journey pathway invites you to join in an intentional walk where you can listen to God’s direction in your life, grow in your understanding of discipleship and love others in new ways.
Who is a disciple?
One who joins in a lifelong journey of listening, growing and loving in the Good News of Jesus Christ to transform the world. Jesus held his twelve disciples near to him and helped them to understand what God is like and how they should live well like Jesus.
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in
the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit” Matthew 28:19
What is a discipleship pathway?
As disciples created intentionally by God, freed and forgiven through the acts of Jesus Christ, and empowered by the Holy Spirit, we develop in community with Jesus and with all of God’s children through listening, growing, and loving. The breadth of this journey provides a strong personal and communal foundation that enables growing disciples to offer the love of Jesus to all.
The Three Levels of the Journey
God’s loving grace always reaches out to us and calls us into a relationship. We hear the call and open ourselves in faith to experience something new and life-giving. We begin to follow Jesus as a beloved disciple, open to his care and teaching. We join in and experience the practices that begin the journey of discipleship and connect to the community of Christ, our spiritual home.
Scripture basis: John 1:35-46, Exodus 3:4, 1 Corinthians 1:9
We respond to Jesus’ call to follow him and walk with him in order to grow in faith. We begin to actively engage in core practices in order to deepen our relationship. From there we learn and understand new ways to be a disciple of Jesus. It is a time of discovering what our God-given gifts are and how we can use them to contribute to others on the journey. God’s grace pours into our faithful attempts and enables them to be a blessing to others.
Scripture basis: Matthew 11:28-30, Jeremiah 18:5-7, Romans 12:2
Once we have experienced transformation by walking with Jesus, it is now our turn to offer God’s grace and share the love of Jesus through our gifts. In love, we desire to meet and offer God’s hospitality in these practices to those who are seeking Jesus. In love, we create opportunities to enable us to initiate relationships. In love, we invite seekers to the journey of discipleship and offer sustaining mentoring relationships and a spiritual home to grow as a disciple.
Scripture basis: Matthew 5:14-16, Matthew 28:18-20, John 20:21-22
The Five Core Values
Every disciple at Asbury can develop as a disciple through five core values:
Experiencing and praising God when gathered as a community as well as personally throughout the week as a lifestyle. Practicing passionate worship means approaching God with deliberate and intense desire and an ardent spirit in order to fully participate with our whole being.
Talking with and listening to God individually and with others. Practicing powerful prayer means utilizing the ability of prayer to give our requests to God in order for God to work in incredible ways that surpass our abilities and understanding.
Risk-taking mission & service:
Making a difference in the lives of others through service projects, volunteer opportunities and mission initiatives. Practicing risk-taking means pushing us out of our comfort zone, stretching us beyond service to people we already know and in faith exposing ourselves to new opportunities to serve Christ.
Intentional Faith Development:
Participating in structured opportunities to grow in grace and in the knowledge and love of God. Practicing intentional faith development means being deliberate in effort and purposeful in action.
Out of gratitude, giving time and resources to advance Jesus’ mission in the whole world to transform lives and relieve suffering. Practicing extravagant generosity means giving in extraordinary ways that exceeds expectations and extends to unexpected measures.
How To Step Into the Journey
- Determine where you currently are in each core value. In the chart above, circle the area that best defines you in that value right now.
- Spend a moment in prayer and ask where you should take a step forward. Is there a value that you have been yearning or curious to develop? Lean toward the value that you may feel is not your strongest and you could benefit from traveling along that path.
- Take a step forward. Mark an arrow next to the step that you would like to live into.
- Partner with someone on the journey. You can always journey alone, but a companion helps you to keep focused, encourages you along the way, holds you accountable for the commitments that you make to yourself, and celebrates with you when you have achieved a step. Need to find a partner? Join one of our Living Your Faith (LYF) groups to get going. There are also several other opportunities to live out your journey with other groups at Asbury. For more information on groups, contact our Connections Coordinator at Connections@AsburyUnitedMethodist.org.
A Personal & Communal Process
We can experience God in our personal relationship with God, and we can also experience God in community with others. The key is to balance those experiences so that we get a depth of experience. For example, we can read scripture on our own and discern how God is speaking to us, but we can also study scripture together and hear other interpretations that might be God speaking to us.
“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. Awe came upon everyone, because many wonders and signs were being done by the apostles. All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need. Day by day, as they spent much time together in the temple, they broke bread at home and ate their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having the goodwill of all the people. And day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved.” Acts 2:42-47
This is a journey that lasts as long as we are filled with breath. We can always listen, always grow and always love. We are never a master at any part of discipleship, yet we follow the Master, always learning. Therefore, once we are comfortable and confident enough in one area, we can move on to the next step or begin to discover something new. God’s love is new for us every day and God’s grace provides the opportunity for us to flourish.
Our prayer is that this discipleship pathway tool empowers you to become a effective disciple that is listening, growing and loving with God. If you have any questions about this journey, please contact the pastor for guidance.