There is a significant difference between a follower and a disciple. People may follow someone for something, like following someone on Twitter. Many people followed Christ, but only a few were his disciple. Mark 2:15 makes the clear distinction for us, “While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him.” His disciples were with him, and many others followed him. Jesus is interested in followers to the point of turning them into disciples. Jesus calls us to be disciples, not to be a follower. To be a disciple of Christ, we have to die to ourselves. Everything about ourselves needs to die, and then we become like Christ little by little. Followers want someone to show them the way without losing any part of themselves. Jesus wants us to lose all of ourselves to find ourselves in Him. Just as a seed needs to die to grow, we must die to live. He told his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me” Mark 8:34. Deny ourselves is slowly sacrificing our desires. It is a laborious process, but it is indeed freeing and peaceful when we are alive in Christ.
Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us your son, Jesus. Please help me be a true disciple of Christ. I don’t want to be just a follower. Help me die daily to live in Christ. Jesus, I love you, and I want to be more like you. I want people to see you in me.