Why is discipleship so appealing today? Let’s talk about four possibilities.
1. Many people were not established in the basics of the Christian faith and realize later that something is missing. Discipleship is not head knowledge and does not happen from the pulpit or in a class room setting. These people often long for clarity and practical help in developing an authentic, stable and consistent growth pattern for their spiritual life resulting in a dynamic walk with Christ.
2. Many people who become followers of Christ are products of dysfunctional family situations. They are willing to go through a relational discipleship process if it will help bring wholeness.
3. People come to realize that a well designed discipleship experience instills a basic Christ-centered life that will provide a foundation for a lifetime of following Christ. The disciplines learned and practiced will strengthen and develop the believer so she is quick to sense the Spirit’s leading and draw upon God’s grace and resources. It is similar to a well trained athlete, who has far greater capacity to fully use all her talents in a challenging situation than a lesser-conditioned one with equal ability. We are often exhorted in Scripture in this area (2 Timothy 2, I Corinthians 9, Hebrews 5 and 12).
4. People catch a vision for the Biblical basis of discipleship. They realize that God’s primary plan for the church is for discipleship. They see in Matthew 28 that the Great Commission is not an option to be considered but a command to be obeyed. (quote?) As people develop a Biblical philosophy of ministry they understand that the goal of evangelism is not converts but the goal of evangelism is discipleship.
So whatever your age or however long you have been a Christian, this type of mentoring may well apply to you or others in your church or ministry. Comments?