The Lord extends the invitation to all of us to follow him. He stands at the door and knocks. (Revelation 3:20). His arms of mercy are extended to all of us. The simile that is used several times in the scriptures about how He will gather us as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings applies to all of us. We have to allow Him to gather us in and protect us. If we run away when the arms of mercy are extended, then we won’t receive the benefit of his protecting arms. His invitation is for us to come to him. We are all invited. We know that the fruit of the tree of life is the greatest of all the gifts of God and is the most precious and desirable of all other fruits (1 Nephi 15:36). God’s greatest gift was manifest when he sent His Son to redeem his people. It is clear that we must reach out and partake of the fruit. Just as we have to accept the invitation to come unto him, we also have to reach and partake. There is no force or coercion. We simply have to make the choice to come to him.
Elder Daniel L. Johnson said:
Those of us who have entered into the waters of baptism and received the gift of the Holy Ghost have covenanted that we are willing to take upon ourselves the name of Jesus Christ, or in other words, we declare ourselves to be disciples of the Lord. We renew that covenant each week as we partake of the sacrament, and we demonstrate that discipleship by the way that we live.
Making the covenant to be a disciple of Christ is the beginning of a lifelong process. . . As we repent of our sins and strive to do what He would have us do and serve our fellowmen as He would serve them, we will inevitably become more like Him. Becoming like Him and being one with Him is the ultimate goal and objective—and essentially the very definition of true discipleship. (Elder Daniel L. Johnson, “Becoming a True Disciple”, October 2012 General Conference)
The road to discipleship does not go through a list of callings. Your refiners fire may be through addiction, wayward children, loneliness, depression, scoutmaster or even nursery leader. Your personal path to becoming a disciple of Christ begins with dropping to your knees. That’s the first step. Do you want the rest of the checklist? Here it is: Step 2 is consistent scripture study, and step 3 is acting upon the promptings you receive. Don’t make it too complicated. The path is easy. The yoke is light. The storms will come. And the rock of your redeemer will give you a sure foundation with power to become His sons and His daughters.
I invite each of you to take some time very soon and ponder where you are on the path to discipleship. Ask yourself, “What am I becoming?” “Am I on a path that will help me and others become despises of Jesus Christ and more fully enjoy the blessings of the holy temple.