This past Saturday we went to the Splash pad in Little Rock’s War Memorial park for my oldest daughters fourth birthday party. I was immediately reminded of the lesson that God taught me the last time we played at the splash park. I finally hijacked my wife’s computer (I am currently computerless), and want to tell you what I learned that day about discipleship.
We rolled up into the splash park Memorial day weekend, and I’m immediately impressed by the whole set up. There’s an upper and lower level with various jets that shoot water in multiple directions, very cool! My next thought went to “How do you get the water to start spraying?” I quickly went through the options, “is it on a timer like a wave pool? Is there a button? I’m guessing its a button.” I glanced around and located what looked to be several panels that had small silver buttons, sure enough the small silver circles cause the water to burst forth.
There were two buttons that each controlled the opposite ends water. At first I was very proud of myself, I alone controlled the water. No one else knew about the buttons and I wasn’t telling. To be honest it was fun being relied on to start the water, pressing it on unsuspecting people and delighting little kids who were anxiously waiting, but after awhile it became tedious. I had to constantly walk back and forth between the buttons on the different levels to keep the water coming. So more out of fatigue than generosity I found a young boy and entrusted the secret of the water unto him. It was amazing. No more walking, the proud look on the face of the boy whom I had entrusted, but then it happened. He left. Simply went home, and then no water. Having experienced the freedom of no longer being the solely dependent person for the water display, I quickly spotted another young boy and once again gave out the secret of the water. Same results; delight, pride, water in abundance, and then; he left.
It was then when it occurred to me that this was eerily similar to making disciples. There has to be reproduction to truly make disciples.
“every disciple of Jesus should eventually be capable of making other disciples of Jesus. The goal is reproduction. The end-game is a multiplying movement of discipleship and mission that fulfills the Great Commission.”
In order for us to truly see the Gospel advance, we must make disciples that make disciples. The discipleship process has to go beyond the one and must include training to help them reproduce themselves. Only then will we see the true Gospel’s total effectiveness in our churches today.
Have a tip on creating reproducing disciples? How have you seen this work? Let me know in the comments below.