This is the fourth part in a series talking about discipling the generations, especially young people. We are looking at aspects of Jesus' life and example of how He worked with His disciples. We’re going to look today at Jesus’ intentional work of growing His disciples.
The first point I want to emphasize is Jesus intentionally challenged His disciples with tasks meant to stretch and grow them. He taught them, equipped them, and then sent them forth to serve various times, always bringing them back to debrief and make sense of what they’d experienced. For a disciple to truly grow and mature, these times of stretching are critical. It isn’t enough to simply feed your disciple head knowledge. They must learn to apply the Word of God in their daily life. Sometimes, life events will help them along without any involvement from you. But other times, they may need encouragement from you to do something that will challenge and strengthen their faith. Like Jesus, we must be sensitive to these opportunities in the lives of those we have been called to train.
In addition, Jesus used significant events to make impactful messages sink deep in their hearts. Like the feeding of five thousand. Or the raising of Lazarus. Or the storm on the sea. Crisis moments in our lives can become huge “ah ha!” moments of spiritual truths. Sometimes a mentor is all we need to help us see the light. When we are all wrapped up in our own busyness, it’s hard to truly be there for a friend experiencing a crisis moment. But that is exactly what Jesus wants us to do, not only to help them bear the burden, but also to point them towards the light and truth of God and His everlasting Word.
Take a moment to prayerfully consider who in your life is going through a crisis moment right now. How can you be an encouragement to them today?