Discipleship: Click | View Series
recently made the following statement concerning Nate Marquardt
: "Greg Jackson disciple Nate Marquardt exploited a gap in footwork and conditioning to secure his seventh victory in the UFC on Saturday." Once again we see this word—disciple—used in the context of martial arts in a way that we can learn from as disciples of Jesus Christ. What makes people call Nate, who is a brother in Christ, a disciple of Greg Jackson
Sacrifice Your Convenience
One of Nate's qualities is a willingness to sacrifice his convenience in order to be under Greg's teaching. Nate lives in Denver, Colorado, and has his own gym there, but Greg teaches in New Mexico. Despite this inconvenience, Nate leaves his family and job in Denver, on a regular basis, to travel to New Mexico and train because he is committed to learning from and becoming a fighter like Greg Jackson.
Recently I met Rich Franklin
in Bellevue, Washington, while attending a local fight. Rich lives in Ohio, yet he was in Washington because he trains under Matt Hume
. On a regular basis, he leaves Ohio and his wife so that he might learn from and become a fighter like Matt Hume.
These fighters are not alone; Team Quest
is full of people who have left their homes and family to move to Gresham, Oregon, in order to become a "Team Quest Fighter." Xtreme Couture
is also full of fighters who have left family and friends to move to Las Vegas, so that they might train under Randy Couture. To be a disciple in the fight game means sacrificing part of your personal life and convenience.
Sacrifice Your Job
In Matthew 4, Jesus calls his first disciples. Peter and Andrew are busy working their jobs as fishermen, and when Jesus calls them, they immediately leave their nets and follow him. Then he sees James and John working with their father, and when he calls them, they immediately leave their job and father to follow him as well. Being a disciple of Jesus Christ requires commitment and sacrifice, and it is interesting to me that the first four disciples left their jobs in order to follow Jesus. For men, this is incredibly applicable since we have a natural tendency to define ourselves by our jobs.
Too often we get our sense of worth from our jobs, we sacrifice our families for our jobs, we live under the authority of our jobs, and we do what our jobs dictate. In short, we can easily worship our jobs. This means that to become a disciple of Jesus Christ we must leave our jobs, not in the sense that we must give up our employment, but rather that we will no longer worship it.
In some extreme situations, we may need to physically leave our jobs. Mark 8:35 says, "For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it." The bottom line is that choosing to be a disciple of Jesus will require sacrifice, a sacrifice that God will honor by giving us something better than what we gave up.