“Cross the Line” to Discipler Mentality
The Discipler’s goal: see the God of hope in 2021 defeat pessimism from 2020. Don’t miss this!
Isa 45:2 This is what the LORD says: “I will go before you, Cyrus, and level the mountains. I will smash down gates of bronze and cut through bars of iron. Isa 45:3 And I will give you treasures hidden in the darkness—secret riches. I will do this so you may know that I am the LORD, the God of Israel, the One who calls you by name. (NLT)
I remember the hymn “great is thy faithfulness…strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow”. Discipler mentality is with the hope of defeating pessimism from Covid-19. People experienced the same storm but in different boats. Some experienced negatives more seriously than others. To keep NLRC folks in strong faith in Christ, let us cross the line of fear in these difficult times. The goal of disciplers is towards a positive expectation, not losing heart, but see God’s light and life in darkness. In this unique moment, dreams of the believing could still come true.
In Covid-19 darkness, spiritually strengthening NLRC is not only reasonable but a responsible thing to do. As they are strengthened, they may hold their families together in faith and may even become a source of hope for others.
Christ’s model of helping people build themselves and build others is discipleship. To be a discipler you first become a good disciple. My 2021 call to NLRC is: “cross the line” and become a Discipler, if you are not already one. This is the first “B” of my vision for NLRC – ‘Bring up People’. The world is shaken by Covid-19. Along with it socio-political agendas are progressively challenging Christian values. Spiritual strengthening of church families can do with greater focus. Even though Christians know about discipleship, many are seeking how to better do it.
I said to be disciplers, start with having interest in others, followed by a decision to do it, and humbly seek God by fervent prayer on steps to do it. Praying in discipleship is priority. It is in prayer that you receive God’s wisdom and revelation (Eph 1:17). The Holy Spirit is your teacher, guide and power. You can give only what you have. If you have not learned from Christ faith and hope, how can you teach others? This is a new era never before seen since the Reformation 500 years ago. Pray to see God making something beautiful out of darkness in our discipleship.
There are discipleship platforms: family; church community; and church classroom. The primary focus on discipleship in this 2021 theme is about families being discipled to face difficult times since Covid-19. In lockdown, spirituality was focused at home. In it family in discipleship of their children forms the first platform. If parents need help in the discipleship journey the church community is the second platform arising to help them. The church classroom is the third platform with discipleship in curriculums, including Bible school courses (which are specialized and some Bible teachers are of Eph 4:11 five-fold gift level). These platforms complement one another in our spiritual formation.
For the very young who will not be discipling others yet, train them in classrooms in what we teach everyone. Teach them: not to fear; honour the generations; honour their gender designed by God for their destiny; share and care in group dynamics; and relate with others in school (their marketplace). In 2021, involve dads and moms, brothers and sisters in Kids Church. Their presence speaks loudly about intergenerational involvement. There is mutual learning between adult and children with parents continuing what kids learn from church at home if they were in Kids Church.
For the teens, they can benefit from adults in youth ministry. Adults share with teens their challenges when growing up about issues on sexuality, habits, distractions, career choices and how to relate with the world. Uncles and aunties enter youth ministry to prepare them for the marketplace introducing them to vocations and ambition with Christian perspectives. Knowing the youths, the adults can pray effectively for them. In 2021, adults cross the line to youth work to make Bible practical for them.
Adults in peer mentoring on fathering, parenthood, and faith for family responsibilities could be of use to them. Adults face many challenges mostly by themselves. Being able to pray for one another with sharing and caring is a blessing. In praying together discipleship may happen.
So beside classroom discipleship consider communal discipleship among NLRC members. Also, cell groups, men or ladies groups or informal groups of friends in regular prayer; all these groups may feature discipleship. We do not want to quench the Holy Spirit leading people in discipleship, so we shall walk in faith, in the fear of God and in Christlikeness. Keep the goals of victory over the global shaking in mind so that we bring up people in NLRC in spiritual wholeness with physical and emotional wellbeing.
NLRC! Let us personally, cross lines to faith, hope and success, and find treasures in darkness in your situations.
Let 2021 be a year whereby we all enjoy greater heaven in our homes!
Love in Christ,
Pastor Jeremiah Yap