This is how discipleship worked in Jesus' day: a rabbi (teacher) had disciples (students) who would follow him all the time, for several years.  Here's how the choosing process went: a wannabe disciple would approach a rabbi and ask to follow him.  At this point, the rabbi would grill the wannabe disciple, seeing what he knew, how keen his mind was, and if he had what it took to follow him.  If the rabbi believed that the prospective disciple had what it took, he would say, "Follow me."  At this point, the disciple spent much time with his rabbi, hardly ever leaving his side.  Disciples wanted to know what the rabbi knew and, more importantly, they wanted to become just like their rabbi.

Jesus, in some ways, turned discipleship upside down.  Instead of a wannabe disciple approaching Jesus, Jesus approached people He knew could follow Him, could become just like Him.  Most of these people were not disciples of other rabbis, were not the cream-of-the-crop in first century Palestine.  But, Jesus saw something in these men and women that others couldn't see.  And, when He said, "Follow Me," He was saying, "I believe that - with My help - you can become just like Me."  A disciple of Jesus, simply, is a follower of Jesus.  They followed Jesus closely, learning from Him, becoming like Him.  In Jesus' day, people would say, "May your feet be covered in the dust of your rabbi."  In other words, may you follow your rabbi so closely that you become just like him.

Today, we don't have Jesus physically walking the earth.  But, we have so much available to us to help us become more like Jesus.  We have (1) His Word (the Bible).  Every day, we need to read it, listening to His voice speaking to us in it.  And, what He tells us, we must do. We have the opportunity to gather with other followers of Jesus to worship, which we do on Sunday (10 am).  And, we have smaller groups of Jesus-followers who gather to learn from God's Word together and to "do life" with one another, what we call lifegroups.