Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Discipleship Means Joy

The Cost of DiscipleshipWe can only achieve perfect liberty and enjoy fellowship with Jesus when his command, his call to absolute discipleship, is appreciated in its entirety.  Only the man who follows the command of Jesus single-mindedly, and unresistingly lets his yoke rest upon him, finds his burden easy, and under its gentle pressure receives the power to persevere in the right way.  The command of Jesus is hard, unutterably hard, for those who try to resist it.  But for those who willingly submit, the yoke is easy, and the burden is light. 'His commandments are not grievous' (I John 5.3).  The commandment of Jesus is not a sort of spiritual shock treatment.  Jesus asks nothing of us without giving us the strength to perform it.  His commandment never seeks to destroy life, but to foster, strengthen and heal it. [From the Introduction to Dietrich Bonhoeffer's The Cost of Discipleship (New York: The MacMillan Co., 1959), 31.]