I want to be a disciple. Now what?
1. Believe on Jesus.
A disciple is a follower of Jesus Christ. In order to follow Him, you must first believe on Him. Every person born in human history is born into sin (Romans 3:23). Sin separates us from God. No one can do enough good works to be reconnected to God. Reconnection comes only through receiving the work of Jesus on the cross (Ephesians 2:8-9). When you confess "Jesus is Lord" with your mouth and believe in your heart God raised Jesus from the dead, your sins are wiped (Romans 10:9) away and you become a new person (2 Corinthians 5:17).
2. Read the Bible.
The Bible tells us all about man's sin and God's gift of eternal life. It reveals God's plan for all mankind and is full of promises and commands for believers in Jesus. Since a disciple is a follower of Jesus, a disciple needs to find out everything possible about Jesus: how He talked, thought, and acted. That's what the Bible is for. Follow the Word and you'll follow Jesus, because Jesus is the Word (John 1:1).
3. Begin a conversation with God.
Prayer is communication between God and man. Just like in any relationship, communication can take many forms. God can communicate to us through His Word (the Bible), the Holy Spirit, worship, or creation. We can also communicate to God through singing, speaking, or just living our lives in honor of Him. Communication builds relationships. Prayer builds your relationship with God. If you want to be a disciple, you need to have a life filled with prayer (Luke 5:16).
4. Be filled with the Holy Spirit.
Disciples follow Jesus' lifestyle. Jesus had a life of ministry and impact. His disciples therefore should impact their world. That impact comes through the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus told His disciples to make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:19-20). But He wouldn't allow them to go until the Holy Spirit had come upon them (Luke 24:49). The presence of the Holy Spirit on a believer brings power to be effective witnesses for Jesus Christ (Acts 1:8). When the Holy Spirit comes on a believer, the believer receives this power as well as a heavenly prayer language called "tongues" (Acts 2:4). The Holy Spirit also works His gifts in the believer, such as prophecy, words of wisdom, words of knowledge, and others (1 Corinthians 12:1-11).
5. Commit to church.
A follower of Jesus lives like Jesus. Jesus had a deep, driving love for people. As disciples of Jesus, we need community. Church provides community for followers of Jesus. No one in church is perfect. Therefore no church is perfect. Church is made up of imperfect people who come together for community, support, prayer, worship, friendship, and growth. The Bible commands us to never neglect meeting together at church (Hebrews 10:25).
Jesus is perfect in every way. We are not. A disciple follows Jesus, but can't do it perfectly. We all mess up. That's called sin. To sin means to miss the mark. Our goal is perfection (like hitting a bull's eye with a dart). A sin simply means we missed our goal. But God is good. God is quick to forgive. When you mess up in your life of following Jesus, simply confess your sin to God. God will immediately and completely forgive your sin and cleanse you from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).