Have we lost the true meaning of discipleship?

(Unsplash/Nik MacMillan)

I have a nagging doubt that just won't shift. It comes to me at church during the singing. It haunts me on my commute to work. It bothers me when I am sitting at my desk and it visits me when I am stuck in those long boring meetings that seem to be part of every job I have ever had.

I can't help thinking that what we call discipleship isn't quite what Jesus had in mind. What we have settled for in our pursuit of God doesn't seem to match God's expectations of us.

Have we found a way to neatly box up our faith so that it fits into modern life and doesn't disturb our plans too much? Have we processed our faith so it can be snuck into our college dorm or our office? Have we organised it so it can be fitted around our Netflix addiction and our Spotify habit? Have we fixed it so it can be accommodated around our busy schedules and lifestyle choices?

And have we, by making our faith so efficient, so domesticated, also made our faith ineffective and tame? What if a 'neat and tidy' Christianity may well be the reason why we often become bored of church, and feel dissatisfied with our lives and disconnected and distant from God?

In order to find out answers to my nagging questions, I went on a global journey to track down experts in discipleship who could help me get back to discover what it means to follow Christ in the 21 st century. I wanted authentic Christianity, I wanted to learn about whole hearted discipleship.

I spoke to well known Christian leaders like Professor NT Wright, Andy Crouch and Jo Saxton but also to Christians you may never have heard of but who are quietly getting on with radical obedience to Christ.

My journey took me to Hells Kitchen in New York, the Royal Albert Hall in London, an echoey service corridor in Nashville, to Wall Street and to the scene of a recent stabbing of a young boy because another teenager wanted to steal his bike.

I spoke with artists, activists, researchers, theologians, entrepreneurs, and politicians. Their answers were to offer me a change in understanding and practice of discipleship – what I am calling a 'discipleshift'. This podcast follows my journey and my prayer is that it will help and inspire you to more authentically follow Christ in our increasingly complex world.

The podcast explores issues rarely spoken about in church, it connects the dots between discipleship and areas of our lives that infrequently receive attention. If you have ideas for topics for future episodes or for people you think we need to speak with drop us a line.

In the meantime, listen here and share your thoughts with me on Twitter at @krishk