My wife and I love gardening. We’re not alone. Across the U.S. it is said to be the most popular hobby. There are a bunch of reasons: seeing growth, planning how a landscape can be more beautiful, and enjoying the produce.
Even though I love it, there are challenges. My basil had fungus on it last year and it’s shown up again this year. I don’t want to lose my herbs again. Another issue is weeds. Who doesn’t have these invaders in their flower beds? Solving these problems requires two things. First I need motivation. Second, I need insight.
My go-to solution for insight has been YouTube. In ten minutes I can find a solution to my basil’s fungus. For motivation, simply watching others garden online gets me off the couch and into my own garden.
Motivation and insight are needed in disciplemaking too. Just last week I was pondering a few disciplemaking setbacks with churches and individuals. You’ve probably experienced that too. We can stew and get stuck or try to find a way forward. As in gardening, connecting to sources of insight and motivation provides a boost.
One way we at Navigators Church Ministries are helping with disciplemaking challenges is by sponsoring “The Practitioner’s Podcast: Applying Jesus-style Disciple Making to Everyday Life.” I recently listened to it and, just like the gardening video, it got me thinking and energized me. The two speakers, Justin and Tony, had a quick, engaging banter. They were talking about issues important to me. Within a few minutes I learned something and that got me moving.
That episode explored the “what” of disciplemaking. Having a definition of a disciple is absolutely crucial for any Great Commission worker. Yet church leadership’s desire to arrive at a definition on paper hastily can be problematic. One result is fuzzy definitions. Our NCM staff have seen it often. It is easier to state a definition of a disciple that almost anyone could feel they are accomplishing. Jesus wasn’t fuzzy. He clearly expressed to His disciples what it meant to follow Him (Luke 9:23). A definition can also leave out key components of being a disciple–also not a good tact.
In the podcast, Justin and Tony wrestle with each other’s definition, which I found very helpful. It led me to examine my own definition’s strengths and deficiencies. Clarifying my definition motivated me to engage wisely with those I’m discipling. It takes effort to refine your definition and ensure that it is filtered through all that Jesus desires for His followers.
You may also benefit from my two friends’ insights and motivation. You can listen to them at “The Practitioner’s Podcast: Applying Jesus-style Disciple Making To Everyday Life.” The episode I referenced is “Defining a Disciple Maker.” I hope you enjoy it too and press on in making disciples.
About the Author
How do we include others those who’ve never experienced life-changing ministry? How do we become a church that matures as believers partner in prayer and accountability?
Fifty years of experience has taught me that failures lead to wisdom. So, I want to let you in on five disciplemaking missteps and failures I’ve made and what I’ve learned from them.
How Long Does It Take to Make a Disciple? It