Possibly the most difficult thing most pastors and church leaders face is teaching, leading and helping believers obey everything the Lord had commanded us. The question is how can we do this most effectively? There are many things we can do that contribute to it such as life-changing sermons, God-encountering worship and prayer, authentic friendship, warm small group life and insightful Bible study. All the above in so many churches need to be scrutinized and reformed though. Beyond the above, I think there is something else of critical importance – ONE-TO-ONE mentoring! The most natural way this can take place is within a small group. I have come to realize that I can have good attendance at small group meetings and inspiring meetings but if no one in my group (including me the leader) takes time to befriend, support, encourage and guide one another at a one-to-one level, we won’t be able to help fellow believers obey everything the Lord has commanded us. And without obedience, we will not fulfill God’s destiny for our lives.
A very important key to intentional discipleship is found in what Jesus said in Mt.28:20a – “and teaching them to OBEY EVERYTHING I have COMMANDED you.” If every Christian in every church obeys everything Jesus commanded us, disciples and disciple-makers would explode exponentially! Well-crafted sermons, passionate worship, gourmet food, warm fellowship and intensive Bible study are all great but if they don’t result in fellow believers becoming obedient, then we have all wasted each other’s time, worst still, we have simply played church! That’s the big test of successful discipleship.
Do you see yourself as a son or daughter of the King? Every child of the King has both privileges and responsibilities. One of your privileges: You may call upon the Name of King Jesus in every situation, usher Him into where you are and invite Him to intervene and act for your benefit and protection according to His goodness that His Name may be glorified! One responsibility: To faithfully follow Him and obey His commands.
Jn.14:13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. 15 If you love me, keep my commands.
Wow, what an interesting perspective of what we describe as the five-fold (or four-fold) ministry of the church this video has?! What if those who are called to be apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers were NOT meant to be some celebrated, anointed and exclusive office holders of these 5 areas of ministry but intended to teach the whole Body of Christ (i.e. everyone!) HOW TO BE apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers? How would that change the way we function in the church? How would that change the way we disciple one another? After all, didn’t Paul say in Eph.4:11-12 that Christ gave some to be apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers TO PREPARE GOD’S PEOPLE FOR WORKS OF SERVICE? (Instead of God’s people sitting in the pews listening to messages and enjoying the good stories and testimonies of the apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor and teacher!) Who better to teach us how be apostles to our own community and the nations beyond than the one given by Christ to be an apostle? Who better to help us grow and learn how to prophesy than the one given by Christ to be a prophet? Who better to train us to be daily evangelists to reach out to the friends and strangers we meet than evangelists? Who better to show us how to be pastors in our workplaces and neighbourhood than the pastors? And who better to equip us to teach others the Word of God than those given by Christ to be teachers? Every one of these persons called, anointed and appointed are probably not intended by God to rise to fame and be celebrated individuals, but to be EQUIPPERS of the saints to prepare God’s people for works of service in the same areas the equippers themselves are gifted in. As Richard Jacobson asked in his video below, is today’s church leadership backwards? Or as I would put it, have we gotten church running UPSIDE DOWN?
Walking in the Supernatural 2: Walking in the supernatural requires supernatural faith – faith that is beyond what is natural and ordinary for a person. It’s about having faith that does not waiver in the face of a tough situation – when things don’t go our way or when asked to do things we don’t feel like doing or when it’s something inconvenient to do. Such as that nudge of God to serve in a ministry, submit to your boss, ask for forgiveness, admit you’re wrong, go on a mission trip, continue to go to church during children’s exams period, go to prayer meeting even though work is keeping you busy, give up precious annual leave to do something for the Lord, etc. It’s the ability to see good about something or see God in something even when the path or task appears unpleasant. Supernatural faith dares to believe and dares to act when the odds are stacked against you and when the enemy taunts and belittles you. Supernatural faith is founded upon our supernatural God who has done the unimaginable and unexpected – sending His beloved Son Jesus Christ to die on the cross for our sins – the offended God crucified for the offenders – the God who raised Jesus from the dead and who mocked death and the grave saying, “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” (1Cor.15:55) Supernatural faith is much needed amongst the saints today that the world may see God through our faith.
Walking in the Supernatural: It is vital that we walk in the supernatural every day! While we live in the natural, the supernatural God walks with us and talks with us. He wants to lead us into situations where through us, He can act to change a situation or transform a life, including our lives! First, be AWARE that He is with you. Second, be in constant conversation with Him – a very important part of this is to LISTEN to what He is saying to you. Third, ACT boldly on what He tells you even though it may feel awkward (as long as it does not lead to sin, injury and anything that opposes the written Word of God). Whether it is blessing a colleague, a friend or a stranger with something – a gift, an act of love or a word, don’t hesitate, DO IT and you will see the supernatural God in action through you! Jesus said in Jn.10:27, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” Have a great day!