While there are many stories of Jesus speaking to the “multitudes” the vast majority of the Gospels are stories of his interactions with his disciples. A few men he chose to pour His life in to. In today’s ministry world, we are all about reaching the multitudes – and technology has enabled us to reach people we’ll never even meet via radio, television and this here Internet thingie. (How many who read this point will I ever meet in person?)
Mass teaching may have its place, as does mass evangelism. But Mass Discipleship is an oxymoron. You can’t disciple a crowd, you can only disciple individuals. Even Jesus, God Incarnate, didn’t even attempt to disciple a crowd, and yet in many (dare I say most?) churches today, Mass Discipleship is the plan in place. It’s no wonder we are failing.
May I ask a potentially painful question? Who are you discipling? Individually? Can you name the names of children you are discipling as a follower of Jesus Christ?
My wife and I wrote the Awesome Adventure, My New Life with Jesus, as a tool for discipling children one on one. It was used to disciple many children, as individuals, before DiscipeLand took it and made it what it is today. I still have yet to see a tool on the market designed for discipling kids one on one. I’ve seen salvation follow up booklets and Bible activity books and Bible quizzing books, but there doesn’t seem to be a huge market for tools to disciple children. It’s too bad. I’m not really trying to promote “my book,” I wish there were many others to link as well.
But I DO mean to promote the concept of discipleing kids one on one – no matter whether you find a helpful tool, or just open up God’s Word with them and intentionally guide them through the things they need to know to love and life for God.
I bet your ministry to the masses of kids is great…. but how is your ministry to a few individual kids? It was Jesus’ disciples who turned the world upside down, not the masses he taught on the hillside. It is the individual kids you pour your life into who will yield the best fruit in your ministry!