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Matthew : Chapter 4
18)  As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19)  “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” 20)  At once they left their nets and followed him. 21)  Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, 22)  and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him. Jesus Heals the Sick

Book of the Month

Sammy Tippit told his fiancée, “I can’t promise we’ll be rich, but life won’t be boring.”
Sammy had no idea what an understatement that would become. Beginning in the bars of Baton Rouge and the nightclubs of Chicago, Tippit has shared the news of life-changing faith in Christ all over the world – including in the middle of a revolution in Romania, the aftermath of genocide in Rwanda, and war in Burundi and the Congo.
Sammy’s lifelong adventure has come at a great price. He’s been cursed, threatened, arrested, deported, and blacklisted. He’s also been personally broken, ravaged with illness, and devastated by grief.
Yet he continues to preach to in stadiums, in open fields, and via satellite technology to hundreds of thousands around the globe.  For all other books…

Making Disciples – 1
Sammy Tippit: Welcome to the first session of where we talk about what it means to be a disciple of Jesus. I’m with Corey Webb, and Corey has been a friend for a long time and has worked with teaching and helping people to grow in their faith in Christ, so it’s just a blessing to be with him. We’re going to be talking today about how to follow Jesus and what that means.
Jesus said in Matthew 4:19, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” In Matthew 10:24-25, he talked about a teacher and a student and how the student was not greater than the teacher. I want us just to define a little bit about what it means to be a disciple of Jesus or a learner of Jesus. What does that mean?
Corey Webb: Okay. Well, you know, today we understand… When we think about a learner, we know we usually all begin in a place where we don’t know what we don’t know. Then we move to a place where we begin to know what we don’t know. That’s where learning really begins.
Sammy: Okay. Let’s stop there before we get any further and make sure we understand that. We start at, “I don’t know what I don’t know,” and then we come to, “I know what I don’t know.” Are you saying we have to come to the place where we recognize that we need help, that we don’t know everything, that we need to grow our lives, our faith? Is that what you’re saying?
Corey: Absolutely. We come to a place where we begin to recognize that there are things we need to learn, that we don’t know what we thought we knew at one time, and there’s a whole new world that’s opened up. We say, “Wow! I need to learn about that!”
Sammy: This may be what, when Jesus walked up to Peter… I can’t imagine. It says he said, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” He left everything, and he began to follow Jesus. I mean, that’s incredible to me. It’s like someone going into a business and saying, “Hey, follow me, and I’ll make you fishers of men,” and the employees leaving the business to go follow Jesus.
How does one develop that kind of heart, that kind of learner’s spirit for Jesus? Maybe let me back up and ask this question: What’s the difference between learning of Jesus and learning about Jesus? We’re talking about two different things here, aren’t we?
Corey: Right. Learning about Jesus… Someone could be in a mode where they were learning about something but not be really convinced that there were really things they needed to learn. But when you learn of him… They say today that 70 percent of learning is visual. What Peter began to do was watch Jesus, and he began to learn more and more as he watched Jesus work with and love people.
Sammy: Okay, so what we need to do to learn of Jesus, then… What I’m hearing from you is that we need to look into the Word of God and see how Jesus loved people, how he cared for people, how he lived his life, and then that’s what we’re learning. We’re learning of him. In other words, we’re not just learning about him but about who he is in our lives.
Let me throw out one other thing to you and see what you think about this. Learning of Jesus is learning to walk with him, not just knowing about him. It’s learning to walk daily with him and grow into his likeness. I think that has something to do with following Christ and learning of Christ.
Corey: Right, right. You’re recognizing his lifestyle, and you recognize Jesus as our greatest role model. Then we’re beginning to take on that lifestyle, take on those mannerisms and that heart, and live that those out wherever we live.
Sammy: Well, okay. Now I know this all sounds good to me, you, and a lot of people, but people say, “Well, yeah. How do you do that?” I mean, it’s easier said than done.
Corey: Sure.
Sammy: Because when you look at Jesus, you see total perfection, absolute purity. There’s no greater love. Then we could say, “Oh, there’s no way.” So what are some of the hindrances, and how do we come to the place where we learn to grow in his grace, to become like him?
Corey: Well, a hindrance would be when we think we know better. I’ll give you an example. When I trained to run my first marathon, my trainer had told me to look at my watch at the first mile when I began the marathon and make sure I wasn’t running too quickly. At that point, I was convinced that if I just watched this other person, at the first mile he would know what I was supposed to be doing, and I wouldn’t need to look at my watch.
The first mile came, and I thought, “Man, I feel a little winded. I have to be running faster than an 8-minute mile,” but I did not look at my watch. The second mile came, and I thought, “I may not have it today.” The third mile came, and I thought, “I have to look at my watch.” I looked at my watch and realized I was watching 6-minute miles, and I had not looked at my watch earlier.
Sammy: Hey, I’ve run marathons, so I know what that means.
Corey: I wasn’t convinced, but I should have been convinced.
Sammy: Don’t misunderstand me, but do you know what this reminds me of?
Corey: What’s that?
Sammy: Adam and Eve in the garden. You know, Eve said, “Hey, God said to do it this way. I know better. I can do it my way.” We have the result of it today. That is an incredible hindrance because it’s really pride.
Corey: Mm-hmm. Absolutely. We know better.
Sammy: We say, “I know better than the teacher.” That’s what Jesus was saying. When we learn of him, we have to say, “Okay, Jesus, you know how to do this better than I do. I’m going to look to you. I’m going to trust you, and I’m going to learn how to do this.” Now there is then the empowerment. I think this is something that’s different from any other aspect of life.
There are a lot of things where you can say, “Hey, I’m an expert in this. I know how to do this.” But I think we have to come to the place in the Christian life where we say, “I can’t do this. I need God’s power. I need God’s grace,” because following Jesus is not just a religious deal, an obligation of rules and regulations. Following Jesus is appropriating his grace.
Corey: Amen.
Sammy: It’s by his grace that we come into this relationship. It’s a grace relationship. So let’s talk about that: the relationship of grace and what it means to follow Jesus. Where does grace come in regarding the discipline? You’re saying, “Okay, I need to be like Jesus.” How does that work?
Corey: Well, I think a way to look at that is like it’s a relationship between a father and a son. We are taking on the role of a son, and our father knows best. He is leading us, and he is going to love us no matter what. A great way to explain grace is like an acrostic: “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.”  We get the riches, the blessing of God, at the expense of what Jesus has already paid for us. So we’re recognizing that our father in heaven knows better, and he is still going to be pleased with us, even though we may make mistakes, through Jesus’ death and resurrection on the cross.
Sammy: Yeah. So we enter into this relationship of following him by his grace. It’s not by our works. As we follow, we learn that his grace helps us to grow.
Corey: Yes.
Sammy: I think probably the greatest lesson I learned early on the Christian life was that I could not live it. I remember I had this issue with jealousy, and I’d get jealous and say, “I’m not going to be jealous.” I’d try not to be jealous, and the harder I tried, the more jealous I became. Then one day someone shared with me, “Sammy, it’s not what you can do. It’s what he has done in you and for you.”
In that moment, I just prayed and said, “God, if it’s left up to me, I’m going to be jealous, so I’m trusting you to give me the grace and power not to be jealous.” The next time I started to get jealous, I said, “Okay, Lord. Here it goes, so I’m looking to you. I’m trusting you.” Let’s wrap this all up. Humility is really at the core of where grace is applied. In other words, we have to have a heart of humility to be a learner, to be a follower of Jesus. What I’m hearing you say is that humility is of prime importance. Is that correct?
Corey: Yes. It’s a prime character trait of Jesus. Jesus himself, as our greatest role model, modeled humility. He was always willing to serve. He did things not out of selfish ambition but to be a blessing to the bigger picture, the kingdom, the plan God had.
Sammy: So humility is important. I want us to talk about that a little more.
Corey: Okay. That’s great.

About Sammy Tippit Ministries

STM has been providing inspiration and help around the world for nearly 50 years. Sammy Tippit, founder and president, is a world renowned counselor, teacher and evangelist with experience serving and helping people in over 80 countries. Sammy provides materials that help people tackle a broad array of social, societal, psychological and spiritual issues. He is particularly passionate about making materials accessible to other countries around the world. Sammy is married to Debara “Tex” Tippit, and they have two children and five grandchildren.
Sammy Tippit Ministries is a registered 501c3 non-profit organization.
Contact: info@sammytippit.org

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