The word disciple is not tossed around much in daily conversation. I consider myself a disciple of Jesus Christ, but I don’t think much about what that term indicates. Let’s go a little deeper.
According to my grandson, who studies Latin in college, disciple is derived from the Latin disco which has to do with learning, becoming acquainted with, and instruction. It is easy to conclude that disciples are people who have learned about or become acquainted with someone or something. Thankfully, I am aware of the good news of salvation, of the wondrous saving, loving power of Jesus Christ. I have learned about God, our Creator, and the Holy Spirit. I understand what true love is and what priorities I should have. I am working at being a faithful disciple of Christ.
I have also learned that to be a good disciple, another disco word comes into play: discipline—more specifically self-discipline. It is necessary to apply what I have learned about myself and others in order to learn more about living a life dedicated to following the way of Jesus.
How does that self-discipline work? First of all, decisions have to be made as to what are truthful, worthy goals. With anything that is challenging, perseverance and repetition are necessary. I find that proper rest and sleep are required to keep the mind and body functioning properly. Above all, divine help should be requested through daily prayer, along with the reception of the sacraments. If I want to be a good disciple of Christ, I must stay happily focused on growing in love. I have to open myself to God’s love.