Confession time... As of today's writing, April 18, I, Guy Muse, a disciple and follower of Christ have not discipled a single person this year. I am truly embarrassed. It is the skeleton hidden in my closet that I don't want anybody to know about.
Everyday for the past two weeks and continuing for two weeks more, our team has been teaching groups of fifteen pastors who are coming to Guayaquil from all over the coastal region of Ecuador. They are being introduced to our COSECHA (Harvest) discipleship/church planting training materials that will be used to reach the goal of 1-million disciples in one year.
The heart of the training is making disciples. The only way to win/disciple a million in a year is to begin making disciples that make disciples. Nothing new. But are we doing it? Am I doing it?
If we are out there everyday exhorting everyone about the priority of making disciples, who am I discipling? My biggest fear everyday in the trainings is that someone will bluntly ask me who I am discipling! It happened the other day. Instead of answering, I ask one of our co-workers to share about the disciples they were working with.
Don't get me wrong...I do my fair share of witnessing with taxi drivers and people whom I cross paths with in my daily living. And of course, like everybody else, we do a lot of Gospel sharing when volunteer teams come down. But that isn't making disciples, is it?
In the daily trainings it is shared that if we would just win and disciple ONE person per year, and they in turn do the same, in 32 years the whole world would be saved. Yet after 50+ years of Baptist presence in Ecuador we can claim only some 28,000 believers. What this says is that we aren't even discipling ONE PERSON per year! Something is terribly, terribly wrong!
On our team of twelve (2 IMBers, 10 nationals) we have adopted the language amongst us about asking one another about our disciples. This is to stimulate us and exhort one another to be about doing what Jesus said to do. I can guarantee you that my most frantic prayer these days is that God would give me at least one soul that I can report back to our team that I am discipling.
What is even more embarrasing is that the youngest believer on our team who was baptized 14 months ago has 17 new believers she is discipling every week. I doubt Monica could tell you the names of the books in the NT, but she is making disciples in two house churches along with her husband Medardo and daughter Aneida.
But I am not alone in my embarrassing confession. In each of the trainings with the daily groups of fifteen pastors we ask them for a show of hands of those who are actually discipling someone. Out of the nearly 150 pastors we have met with so far, maybe 5 have raised their hands saying they are actually discipling someone.
Question. What are we doing? We are certainly busy. But doing what? In all the stuff that we are doing are we actually making disciples? I fear the enemy has us so distracted with all kinds of good activities, but in the midst of all we are doing, can we honestly say we doing what Christ commanded?
Do we need to start an AA group for followers of Christ who don't make disciples ...Hi, my name is ____, it has been three years since I last discipled someone...
With all the attention in our denomination and organization over tertiary issues, it is truly amazing that no one seems to be asking the infinitely more important question with eternity of souls riding upon its answer: are you actually making disciples?
What are you doing to encourage a disciple making movement amongst your community, people group, town, sphere of influence?
P.S. I have an appointment this coming Monday evening with a family who live in one of the upper class neighborhoods. I am praying desperately that the Lord would allow me to lead them to Jesus and then begin with them the discipleship process. Would you please pause a second and pray for this Monday night meeting in their home? Thanks.