I believe my mission is to cultivate life with God and invite others into it. I extend invitations across Beautycounter or graphic design conversations, in the playroom with Anna, at the kitchen table with other families, in hanging out with my high school friends, and in any opportunity God puts in front of me if I’m courageous enough.
Discipleship to me is like making introductions at a dinner party. Have you meet this side, this way, this love of God?
I have friends gifted in teaching, and they are faithfully following Jesus in that calling. I am not that way. But I will study it alongside someone. I have friends naturally wired toward evangelism. I am not; I stumble and bumble through sentences about the gospel, even though I preach it to myself every day. But I will plunge myself into your life and story and tell you of Jesus’ love.
Middle and high school girls are my jam. And they know it because I tell them often. Maybe because I had so many older friends fold me into their lives when I was a high schooler. Maybe simply because God wired me to find joy in that age group. Or maybe because I am blessed to go to church with awesome young women who over the years have become real friends. Either way, God cemented in me a desire and delight in pursuing them.
God gave us The Great Commission found in Matthew 28:19-20: “Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Now, more than ever in my lifetime, am I hearing the word ‘discipleship’ promoted and pursued and talked about. Jesus calls the disciples his witness in Acts 1:8. Romans 10:14–15 challenges us that someone can’t believe if they haven’t heard the gospel, so we are to go and share it.
A verse that propels me forward is 2 Peter 3:17-18: “As for you, divinely loved ones, since you are forewarned of these things, be careful that you are not led astray by the error of the lawless and lose your firm grip on the truth. But continue to grow and increase in God’s grace and intimacy with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. May he receive all the glory both now and until the day eternity begins. Amen!” (TPT)
I have the opportunity to be a safe place for learning and processing, a supplementary builder of foundational gospel blocks and a friend to cling to the Bible’s truth alongside them as we grow together. HOW. AWESOME. Dallas Willard said “discipleship is for the sake of the world, not for the sake of the church. It is carried out in those situations where people spend their life.”
Making disciples is a multifaceted calling, and for me, what makes it the most special is the chance to invite someone into life with an all-satisfying, all-powerful, all-sufficient, holy, good and loving God. This is my gift to give. Why would I not?
I pose that to you as well, my friend. Jesus is your gift to give. Are you offering it? Are you discipling someone? It doesn’t have to be fancy or formal. It can be simple. It is but pursuing deep friendship with a few, making them a place at your table, being present for them, and fixing your eyes on Jesus together.
Ask God for names. Ask Him for opportunities. Talk to your pastor about it. There is something exciting about the chance to part of God’s work in someone else’s life, isn’t it? Let’s do it.