Thoughts on Making Disciples 11
Let's face it. How people grow in Christ is as much a mystery as how someone comes to faith. It's a miracle really -- each one of us, a walking, talking miracle.
My take on making disciples, at the moment (things can change), is that the emphasis shouldn't be getting everything just right. We can all relax. There isn't some secret formula. It's not all riding on you.
That said, I'm not suggesting we all just wing it. Last week, I pointed out the striking economy of words in the Great Commission. Bringing someone to maturity seems to be summed up in teaching them to obey all that I've commanded you... The genius of this statement is that in it's brevity, it says what no amount of verbosity could possibly cover. It is like a small, simple door through which we might discover a vast, unsearchable kingdom.
With helping them grow to maturity, I use as a "landmark" on the horizon this simple emphasis: Get them to read (absorb) the Bible and teach them to translate what their reading into a responsive act of obedience. In other words, help them to read the Bible as God's word and teach them to do what he says.
The person who knows my commandments and keeps them, that’s who loves me. And the person who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and make myself plain to him. John 14:21 (MSG)