Being Disciples and Making Disciples

As I have mentioned a few times, I enjoy golf. It is fun to get out on the golf course, to visit with friends as we walk or ride along and to try to get the ball from the tee to the hole. I emphasize the word try because I am not very good at golf. I enjoy it as much as a bad golfer can, but I never seem to improve. With most sports I enjoy, I have tried to share that enjoyment with my kids. We have shot baskets together or thrown a ball around. We have ridden our bicycles and lifted weights. But when it comes to golf, I have always been hesitant. Why? Because however you may have imagined my description of being bad at golf, the reality is likely quite a bit worse. I would love for them to enjoy the game and even play with me, but I don’t like the thought of them learning it from me. I want to them to learn well. I want them to be better. Fortunately I have not been called to make golfers.
You and I have been called to make disciples. That command given by Jesus at the end of Matthew 28 is not optional. If we view our skills in that area in the same way that I view my golf skills, then there is only one solution: work to improve. Become the disciples we want others to be. Kenneth Boa explains how this works in his book, Conformed to His Image.
“We teach what we believe, but we reproduce what we are. Although God in His grace may often use us in spite of ourselves, we normally cannot impart what we do not possess. Discipleship does not happen by accident; it is a process that is animated by an ongoing intention of the heart. No one suddenly stumbles into spirituality, and if we do not decide to apprentice ourselves to Jesus’ authority, we will not become His disciples. Similarly, if we do not consciously intend to reproduce the life of Christ in others, we will miss our calling to make disciples. The more we know Christ, the better we can make Him known.”
That last sentence is the key. To make disciples, we must know Christ well. To teach others to live like Him, we have to be the example of living like Him. It was His design with His first apostles, and it is His design with us today. Don’t hesitate. Be like Him.
– Brian
And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.  (1 Corinthians 2:2)

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