By Aaron Johnson, SLC Member at St. Luke
My wife, Kristine, and I have always been what you would call ‘good Christian people’. That is to say, we have always done the things Christian people are supposed to do. We go to church regularly, stick around for Bible study, give offerings, and everything else that sends a message to the community that we have it together.
When we came to St. Luke, however, something became very apparent. Our faith walks, while devoted and faithful, lacked intention. To put it simply, I had never heard of the term ‘discipleship walk’ nor had I ever used that word as a verb. Disciple was always a noun, a someone, and, more specifically, a someone else.
Disciple was always a noun, a someone, and, more specifically, a someone else.
It wasn’t until I heard a sermon from Pastor Matt about where I was in my discipleship walk that I was able to put into words what St. Luke was making me feel. Where was I on my discipleship walk? I had a lot of boxes checked but what did they mean in my life? I needed to honestly look at myself and say yes, I’m a follower of Christ, but not a servant. It was an uncomfortable moment.
It was shortly after this moment, however, that Christ’s invitations became so clear and so numerous that even I was able to see them. My good friend, O’Neill, invited me to be a part of a Triad with him. I had no clue what it was, other than it was a ‘group devotion’ type thing. With Christ’s help, I was able to say yes and start thinking of my faith in a different way.
Through this introduction, I began to become more connected, on a faith level, to fellow believers in Christ. I was an expert in the Sunday morning “Hello!” with a warm smile that didn’t quite rope me into detailed conversation. Jesus’ work here at St. Luke has helped push me toward intentional faith relationships with people that I would have simply been an acquaintance of in the past.
Christ’s invitation soon escalated to a complete outpouring of opportunities from St. Luke. Before I knew it I was participating in home groups, huddles, and other programs that helped me focus on intentionally following Jesus and embracing the word disciple as a verb… as my verb.
Intentionally following Jesus and embracing the word disciple as a verb… as my verb.
Now I’m here, a fallen sinner saved by Christ’s grace, and I’ve been asked to serve the St. Luke congregation as a member of our governance board, the SLC. I could not be more humbled or excited about what is ahead on this journey. It is most definitely a journey. We will have great times and bad times. We will make progress and then we will fall and need to be picked up. Through it all though, Jesus will be at work in us and the people around us.
Christ is here for us. Through the brief time my family has had the blessing of this congregation, I can say emphatically that Jesus is at work here at St. Luke. I was aware of it in the feeling I had when I first visited this church, I hear it in the messages preached on Sunday, and I experience it in the fellowship of my brothers and sisters both during a Sunday and throughout the week. A passive faith is not the invitation of Christ or this congregation. Jesus is calling all of us to step out of unconnected façades and engage in the work of discipling. He is calling us to open our eyes and acknowledge our desperate need for Him.
Please pray for our congregational leaders in the new journey going forward, that we may make ourselves servants, first to Christ, and also to you, our brothers and sisters. We all will need grace in abundance as we continue to be more intentional about our own discipleship and the way we can impact the faith walk of others around us.
For more about our governance board, the SLC, please visit http://stlukeaa.org/slc.
To see the sermon series Aaron mentioned, visit http://stlukeaa.org/sermons/moving-the-needle/.