Therefore go and make disciples… Matthew 28:19
Discipleship is a substantial part of the Great Commission and is to be a compelling force of all of us in ministry. When a person receives Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, a wonderful process begins of growth and maturity. We as ministers are to be about this process.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer in his classic, The Cost of Discipleship, states, “Discipleship is not an offer that man makes to Christ.” Discipleship is Christ’s invitation to us to become like Him. Our mission is to assist followers of Christ to become fully devoted and firmly planted.
Recently, I had a very intriguing conversation with a young millennial (a 20-something) who wanted to talk about discipleship. He expressed concern about the lack of a system in his own church for helping people grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus. He indicated that it appeared that the church he attended was more about fellowship than discipleship. He said, “Don’t get me wrong, Pastor Bill, I think fellowship is important! But I worry that people are not growing in their faith.” We talked through some of his expressed angsts and discussed some ways he might help positively transform the culture of the church.
Let me be honest with you. My millennial friend is on to something. Regrettably, many churches seem to have unintentionally failed to develop or maintain an effective discipleship plan. Because this is a desire of all of us, I would encourage us to pause and reconsider ways we can provide a better discipleship plan in our local churches here in Oregon.
This is a perfect time to develop a new plan and set into motion a pathway for growth and maturity.
Step 1: Develop a New Plan
Step 2: Engage the Plan
Step 3: Make Discipleship Again a Major Component of Your Mission
But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
To him be glory both now and forever! Amen. 2 Peter 3:18