Faithful Men

12 05 2015

“And the things you have heard from me, in the presence of many witnesses, these entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach others also.”  2 Timothy 2:2

When God calls a Disciple to disciple another person, he doesn’t just say to disciple anyone, but rather we are to disciple those who will be faithful with what is being entrusted to them.  A disciple understands that to invest their lives in someone who will not be “faithful” is to squander the valuable possession that has been entrusted to them.  Even Jesus said that we must be careful not to “cast your pearls before swine.” (Matt. 7:6)

Think of it this way.  If the person who discipled Billy Graham had instead spent all of their time trying to get an uninterested man to commit to the life of a disciple, and Billy Graham failed to grow and mature as a result, what would have been the impact on the Kingdom?  If you and I spend all of our time chasing those who are “not faithful”, the ones who are faithful and earnest in their faith will suffer.  It’s not that every person isn’t important, but not every person chooses the path of faithfulness.

Follow Me

11 05 2015

Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”  1 Corinthians 11:1

When a Disciple makes a decision to enter into the realm of “Making Disciples”, what they say matters little compared to what they do and how they live.  It is the actions and the life of a disciple that will have the greatest impact on those whom they are investing in.  When Jesus invited His disciples to “Follow” Him, he was inviting them to follow His actions, not just to follow His teaching.

Paul exhorted the Corinthian church to “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”  Paul understood that the model for discipleship isn’t Paul, or Peter, or any other man.  The model of a disciple is Jesus, and Paul made it his goal to replicate that model so closely that those whom he was discipling could see it and live it, just as he was.

A disciple must always remember that they will reproduce who they are.  This should cause us to strive with great intensity to be men and women who, like Paul, seek to live like Christ, that those who are watching us can follow our example.

Would you feel comfortable having others follow your spiritual example?

DOT.Word (Doer’s of the Word)

10 05 2015

“Do not merely listen to the Word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”  James 1:22

Learning which manifests itself into growth in our life happens most effectively when we put things into practice. I can read books, listen to instruction, and even watch an expert, but until I pick up a bat and start taking swings I will never become a good hitter in baseball. I can learn all about the right form and technique for shooting, but until I get out there and start taking aim and practicing shooting clays with a shotgun I will never be a good shooter.

When it comes to being a disciple we must put into practice the things Jesus taught.  The greatest discipleship failure of many christians is that they read God’s Word, but never push themselves to put the truths they learn into practice.  It’s one thing to know God’s Word, it’s completely another to live God’s Word. A disciple who is committed to growth, takes what goes in their head, allows it to penetrate their heart, and then acts it out with their hands and life.

It’s been said many times, “people won’t care how much you know until they know how much you care”. As a doer of the word there will be no doubt among others as to how much you care.

by Paul Hansen

Feed Your Appetite

9 05 2015

“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness.”  Matthew 5:6

We all have a natural reflex when our bodies need nourishment; when we are hungry our stomach rumbles, when we are thirsty our mouth gets dry.  In those moments, often times all we can think about is how to get something to eat or drink.

The same principle applies to our spiritual appetite.  When we have withheld from our soul its nourishment from the Word of God and refreshment from His presence in our life our soul begins to crave it.  The goal of a disciple should be to feed ourselves regularly, consistently so as not to starve our soul. When your soul begins to feel dry and empty, make sure to give it what it needs, and you will become satisfied.

Today if you are feeling a hunger and thirst in your soul, do not continue to withhold nourishment from it, but rather feed it so that you may continue to grow.  For an extra encouragement, read Psalm 63.

by Paul Hansen

Pass The Milk

8 05 2015

“…like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation”  1 Peter 2:2

Our bodies all need nourishment in order to grow and flourish, but what about our souls?  Although we might not realize it, for our souls to flourish and to be healthy, they need attention and nourishment just the same.  And just as physical malnutrition can affect your entire life, spiritual malnutrition will do the same.

So how do we continue to grow and mature in the soul?  Peter says that we must remain engaged in the “pure milk of the word”.  It is through the Word of God that our souls are strengthened, sustained, restored, and renewed.  It is God’s Word that enables us to go from just “being saved”, to living and growing in our salvation.

Don’t neglect the pure and nourishing milk of the Word of God today.  It’s the only way that you are going to grow up in your relationship with God!

A Teachable Spirit

7 05 2015

“The wise store up knowledge, but the mouth of a fool invites ruin.”  Proverbs 10:14

Do you know that even the greatest expert in any field still has much to learn about their area of expertise?  There is no such thing as a person who has learned all there is to learn, even if you have given your whole life to study and learn.  The reason a person becomes an expert is because they have committed themselves to learning and storing up knowledge in a particular area.  They have embraced the mindset of a learner.

A disciple must have a commitment to become an expert in Christ, and to do that, they must embrace a teachable Spirit that is hungry and thirsty to learn all they can about Christ and His ways.  A wise disciple understands that this will be an eternal quest, to “ know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings.”  (Phil 3:10)  We will be learning and growing in Christ for all of eternity.

What are you doing today that will increase your knowledge and understanding of Christ?  What are you discovering in God’s Word that you can put into practice today?  How teachable is your Spirit today?

A Desire To Grow

6 05 2015

“Do not rebuke mockers or they will hate you; rebuke the wise and they will love you.  Instruct the wise and they will be wiser still; teach the righteous and they will add to their learning.”  Proverbs 9:8-9

Have you ever told someone what they needed to hear, not necessarily what they wanted to hear?  How did they respond?  Did they appreciate your counsel, or did they get angry and upset?  Their response reveals everything about whether they have a wise spirit or a foolish one.  A foolish person will hate you, but a wise person welcomes the truth into their lives.

Many people, when they face difficulties, don’t want to hear the truth, but rather they want someone to listen to their problems, to feel sorry for them, to affirm what they want… and if someone presses them to consider wisdom, they angrily accuse that person of not listening, or not caring, or not having their best interests at heart.  The sad part is, these people have no desire to grow, but rather to have their selfish nature coddled and affirmed.  The bible calls these people foolish.

But the wise person has an earnest desire to grow and experience God’s very best, even if that means putting to death the desires of their selfish nature.  They welcome the counsel of others who are wise and who will share with them the Truth.  They have no desire to be coddled and cuddled… they want to grow.  They have a heart that is willing to do whatever it takes to draw closer to God and to grow in that relationship with Him.