The call of Christians to make disciples of Jesus is indisputable. What a testament to God’s sovereignty and grace that he involves us—redeemed sinners—in this eternally important task. Unfortunately, it is one thing to have the desire to make disciples and it’s another to know how to make disciples. In the following video, David Platt sits down with Francis Chan to discuss the practical aspects of disciple-making.
Disciple-making must begin with a regular rhythm of studying the bible. Think about beginning in one of the Gospels, like the Gospel of John or the Gospel of Mark and learn to ask questions as you read through it. Two basic questions could be, “what does this text say?” and “what am I going to do about it?” Please remember that the process of discipleship is going to look different with each person and that it can be as simple as getting with someone and asking them questions. These questions can range from what they are learning in their journey through scripture, how they are applying what they are learning, and how they are processing their particular life situation in light of the Bible. As important as questions are, the process of discipleship should include a time of praying with and over the person you are discipling.
So how does someone identify who he or she is supposed to disciple? Start simply by asking God about who He has placed around you. There may be unbelievers in your midst that need pre-discipleship, which is intentional about living and speaking the Gospel into them in the hope that person might repent of their sin and begin a life of following Jesus. If there are other believers in your midst, discipleship may involve having a set time of doing life together and growing in those areas of perceived weakness.
Discipleship does take courage, and finding that courage will not be achieved by looking inward, but it can certainly be found by looking outward. Outwardly, we look to the finished work of Christ on our behalf as we pray for God to provide the needed courage to engage in disciplemaking. Courage also comes easier when we realize that God is actually with us in the discipleship process; his children are never isolated from the vine that is providing the needed fuel to engage with other people.