Theme of the Week: Disciple-Makers
Bible Verse: Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of the two who heard what John had said and who had followed Jesus. The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon and tell him, “We have found the Messiah” (that is, the Christ). And he brought him to Jesus. John 1:40-42 NIV
Scripture Reading: John 1:1-51
Hulk Hogan. The Ultimate Warrior. Andre the Giant. These were household names if you grew up following the very-real-and-not-fake-at-all world of wrestling. That natural aggressiveness and hand-to-hand combat was like moth and flame for young boys like me. But wrestling would come with parental warnings for fear of broken limbs and furniture. Who could resist wanting to mimic flying from the top rope or body-slamming an opponent? If you’ve seen the montage of video clips warning, “Please do not try this at home,” the message is simple – the dangers in the ring should be “left to the professionals.”
We may hold similar thoughts around discipleship—that it’s only for the professionals: the pastors, seminarians, elders, teachers, the spiritual strongmen among us. But the mandate to “go therefore and make disciples” given by Jesus was not for a professional class of religious folks. It was to every follower of Jesus, no exemptions. At Impactus, our vision is that “every man would become, grow, and live as disciples of Jesus.”
The place to begin is sometimes right under our noses: discipleship often starts with an invitation. Andrew, a disciple of John the Baptist, hears John’s declaration and decides to follow Jesus. But the first thing he does is find his brother and invite him along. With no hesitation, Andrew starts the process. There are many reasons (let’s be honest, excuses) for hesitation in sharing our faith and our lives: we’re too afraid, too busy, or too distracted.
But what if we turned our hesitation into an invitation? Discipleship can start with someone who has yet to begin a faith journey or someone who has been a Christian for years. Now don’t run out and ask someone, “Can I disciple you?” That might be a little weird and presumptuous. Start with a coffee, a conversation, a connection. Be intentional and brave. That’s what Andrew did, and it sure worked out well for him…and us. The guy he brought became one of the greatest apostles and disciples the world has ever seen.
Discipleship starts with an invitation. We all need one…we all need to give one. Please do try this at home!
Prayer: Lord, thank you for the invitation I received to be your disciple. Help me remove my hesitation to share my life and faith and extend that invitation to (insert name) today. Amen.
Reflection: Who invited you to become a follower of Jesus? Why not drop them a note or a call to thank them? Who is the one guy in my sphere of influence that I can begin to connect with and start a genuine friendship and conversation that might lead them to Jesus?
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