Discipleship. It's a word that implies a learner. But it means so much more.
If one is involved is discipleship, someone is a disciple.
Disciple. It's a Jewish word. It implies a relationship between a teacher and learner.
There were twelve disciples in the Bible.
These men spent time with Jesus, learned to love him, learned to do what he did, and died for Him.
Discipleship. It implies whole-heart commitment.
The twelve disciples didn't have a program that they followed. They watched and learned and followed.
The twelve disciples were not involved in a four step discipleship program.
The twelve disciples were not reading devotional material.
The twelve disciples went off in different directions to do God's work.
So, what kind of a discipleship program should our church have?
We could use Multiply from Francis Chan or we could use The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren. We do need to use good material and it does need to be chosen carefully.
But more than that, we need need less strategy and more mystery. We need less on focus on training people will and more focus on knowing them fully. We are not all "one size" and a "one size" discipleship solution just does not fit.
We need "anamchara", a Celtic term that means "soul friend". We need to be that compassionate presence that supports others.
I need to be reminded that I am anamchara. I am that compassionate presence. Didn't Jesus reach out to Thomas the doubter and let him touch His hands and His sides? Didn't he weep with Martha and Mary? Didn't he let all those children come to him?
I need people around to remind me to be that compassionate presence for others. After all, we all pursuing Christ together, and He really is the most compassionate presence of all.