A Reform Movement to Call the Church Back to Making Disciples
One day a highly placed executive in one of America’s largest evangelical denominations told me, “In our denomination, we are not making disciples. And that’s because our pastors have never been discipled.”
Later, my wife and I were having dinner with the president of a seminary and his wife. I told him what the denominational leader (from a different denomination) had said. He lamented, “Well, I’m not surprised. We find that when our students arrive, they have never been discipled. And we have no plans to disciple them while they’re here.”
So here’s the (admittedly oversimplified) picture: Christians who have never been discipled are called to seminary where they are not discipled, then they become pastors of churches where their principle responsibility is to make disciples. Talk about an elephant in the living room!
Jesus left us with the systemic solution to virtually every problem we face. He said, “Go and make disciples….” This is our marching order. No amendment, suspension, correction, retraction, or revocation has ever been issued.
Given the moral and spiritual crisis we face, we cannot afford to get our marching orders confused (or make up our own). Without discipleship people tend to lead unexamined lives, get caught up in the rat race, and become cultural (rather than biblical) Christians. They become Christian in spirit but secular in practice. They end up as statistics.
Our dream is that the Spirit will awaken his church as he has done before, and incite a reform movement to call the church back to its core mission of making disciples. And our prayer is that we can lock arms with you to accelerate what the Spirit wants to do.
As you look forward 10, 20, or more years, can you think of any solution that has a reasonable chance for success other than “making disciples”?
I urge you to spend time praying over what God would have us do together that none of us could do alone.
For the glory of Christ and no other reason,
Pat Morley, Ph.D.