The other day, I was watching a news clip about China’s plan to raise up a national soccer team which will hopefully win the gold medal in 2022, when the summer Olympics come to Beijing. Their plan includes starting up soccer themed schools, where children across the country are immersed in a culture of soccer, starting at 5 years of age. They have a long-term vision with a well thought out plan, which extends even beyond 2022.
Then it dawned on me…..Imagine if we were that intentional about making real disciples in our churches? What if we immersed people in an intentional lifestyle of following Jesus and we had a holistic plan that spanned every generation? What if it was just expected as normal for every Christian to disciple somebody else and we had a culture of multiplication? What if each of us prayed for God to give us one person whom we could teach to follow Jesus and we met with that person weekly to journey with them?
Paul had it right when he said to Timothy, “And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others.” 2 Tim 2:2
I had the privilege of discipling a man within the Freedom Session ministry in 2015. We spent 27 weeks together in a small group learning what it means to bring our pain to Jesus and to allow him to heal it. He was released from an addiction to pornography and God has also healed his marriage when he and his wife were close to separating. This person is now making disciples through Power To Change’s online mentoring ministry. Today I discovered that this person has put their testimony on youtube, and I had the privilege of watching them share the gospel through social media. His hope in making this video is to bring other people to Christ through his story.
I’m a slow learner, but it was one of those moments where I got to see reproduction taking place, where a disciple starts to intentionally make other disciples. I thank God for moments like that because it means that I’m finally starting to get it. I’m not just making disciples…I’m starting to make disciples who make disciples. There is a big difference between those two things and it’s a very important shift. I wish I had embraced that as a core value when I was a teenager or young adult. It would have changed my ministry over the years.
This year at the beginning of this year’s freedom session ministry I told the attendees, Your goal this year, is not to become free….your goal is to become free so that you can help someone else to experience freedom in Christ.
So what do you think? Could we raise up a church that makes disciples who make disciples?
Find out more at the pre-Assembly seminar with Bill Hull on Tuesday, May 31st at First Alliance Church in Calgary. If you can’t attend, pick up Bill’s book called The Disciple Making Pastor. It’s an awesome read.