By Al Behel
Following a concert a lady approached the great pianist, Padereswski, and said, “I would give my life to play like that.” Paderewski answered, “I did.”
On an average, it takes 50,000 hours to make a concert pianist. That’s 19 years, 113 days, at 8 hours a day. Some are willing to pay the price; others are not. In other words, one must give his or her life to be a great pianist.
I can’t help wondering what it takes to become a real disciple of Jesus. Our religious world makes it easy. No major sacrifice of time or energy. No serious study of Scripture. No exercising of one’s mental and spiritual muscles to achieve maturity in Christ. Just sign up and attend a few church services and give a little money. That’s all that is required.
Is that really true? Is discipleship easy? When I read the words of Jesus there seems to be a lot more involved. He speaks of denying oneself and taking up a cross to follow Him. He speaks of persecution and suffering, of selling all that we have. He says we must seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness. He even goes so far as to say we must love others the way He loves
us. He offers no salvation without baptism and a cross (Matthew 28:18-20). A cross is a place to die. Are you willing to pay the price?
Discipling others requires much time and effort, too. Some active personal evangelism leaders have estimated that it may take more than 50 hours to lead an interested individual to become a true follower of Christ. Are you willing to make yourself an instrument through whom the Lord can reach the hearts of those around you. Are you willing to pay the price?