REQUIREMENTS FOR DISCIPLESHIP
1) Deny yourself - James and John coveted the limelight. They replied, “Let one of us sit at your right and the other at your left in your glory. Mark 10:37. One of your greatest challenges will be to resist promoting yourself and trying to succeed on your own, then asking God to bless your efforts. God's not interested in second-hand glory. He wants the credit for what He (not you) accomplishes in your life.
2) Take up your cross - Nobody goes directly from denying themselves to following Jesus. First we go through crucifying experiences. Paul says: 'I die daily' 1Corinthians 15:31. Certain things in your life can be handled only one way - dying to them. Listen: 'Count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God' Romans 6:11. Jesus did not even talk about the cross to His disciples, until He knew they understood this principle. Why? Because until you do, you will never see the cross as a plus.
3) Follow Him - Too often we take God's presence for granted because He said He would never leave us. But He also said: 'You did not choose me...I chose you' John 15:16. It is not God's job to follow you, it is your job to follow Him! When you do, it will cost you, change you, and challenge you. Sometimes you will go through valleys, other times you will stand with Him on the mountaintop. You must be willing to follow Him anywhere, any time, under any conditions; that is the deal! Still want to be a disciple of Jesus?
…and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.
…Then Jesus said to his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.
…Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me."
…Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me."
…And anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.