It’s the final week of our series on common excuses that hinder discipleship in your church. In case you’ve missed it, each week, we’ve been breaking down a common excuse that might be hindering your church’s discipleship goals.
In week one, we talked about how our schedules are usually the first excuse we fall back on. “I just don’t have time,” is the most common excuse we hear. But we have power and control over our schedules. We decide what we can make time for, and intentional discipleship should be one of the things we prioritize as church leaders.
During week two, we shared a more vulnerable excuse. Sometimes, the reason we hesitate to disciple someone directly and in person is because we haven’t experienced that ourselves. However, the great thing about this is that God can work through that inexperience in ways we never imagined. Your inexperience is an opportunity for you to trust God to fill the areas where you fall short.
Week three discussed the question, “Is preaching enough to sustain the discipleship of my church?” The answer is no. Jesus spent part of His time teaching and part of His time intentionally seeking out people to disciple. As church leaders, we should be doing the same.
In week four, we talked about how everyone has a personality that can make disciples. God doesn’t exclude you if you’re introverted or extroverted. He may have wired you to be gifted at preaching, leading, serving, or something else entirely. He’s still called all of us to make disciples.
During week five, we discussed other people’s perception of favoritism and how it impacts whether we choose to disciple others. We understand that some church cultures are super sensitive. Because of this, we shared some tips on how to choose who you disciple.
Last week we talked about how fear is a common excuse for pastors when it comes to discipling others. Mainly, the fear of showing people who they really are. Pastors aren’t perfect. But thankfully we have God who redeemed us through Jesus.
In this last week, we’re talking about an unspoken excuse. One that pastors may not want to admit but are being held to the standard of driving results by their deacon or elder board.
I want something that will produce fast results.
This is often an unspoken excuse, but it is real. Most of the time, pastors are not even thinking about disciple making until something has gone wrong in their church. If the numbers are up and the church is growing, there is little thought to making disciples. “Things are obviously working
great,” they say, “so why change it?”
But when the downturn comes, then pastors are open to a change of course. Unfortunately, many times what they are looking for is a quick fix to a deep problem. “Just give me another program or sermon series that will draw the people and I’m good,” they say. But making disciples isn’t a quick fix, it’s a life decision. It is something you do because you are convinced that Jesus made disciples and you are committed to walk as Jesus walked (I John 2:6).
The church doesn’t need men of excuses, it needs men of action. Men who will follow the example of Jesus and the Apostle Paul. Men who will love the people in their church enough to step down off the platform and into their lives and show them how to walk with Christ.
Jesus’ method for making disciples was grounded in relationships. Making disciples requires you to build relationships with the people in your church in a way that motivates them toward Christ-likeness. Simply put, you can’t microwave life change. You can’t assembly line personal
People don’t change by simply dropping them on a church conveyor belt and running them through various programs and activities. Life change happens one person at a time. One life at a time.