In his article Grow a Disciple-Making Culture in Your Church, Godwin Sathianathan reminds us “Discipleship at its core is the process of growing as a disciple of Jesus Christ. That sounds simple. But what does it actually look like? And how do pastors lead their churches in discipleship? A good place to begin is Jesus’ last words to his disciples: “go . . . make disciples . . . baptizing them . . . and teaching them” (Matt 28:19-20). Three contours of discipleship culture emerge from this passage.” Godwin provides the following encouraging and practical keys that will help you shape a disciple-making culture in your ministry. Read the rest of this entry »2 Comments »
Children need help to deal with tragedy. Sometimes it’s a global tragedy like a war or national disaster. Other times it’s the personal loss of a loved one or the breaking up of a home. How should we respond to these things? Parents have the opportunity and responsibility to teach their children how to think about and react to these events as well as their inner feelings and the confusion they may be experiencing. Read the rest of this entry »1 Comment »
We’ve all heard the saying “Monkey see – monkey do.” This statement describes the process by which a young child imitates the conduct of others, especially his or her parents or siblings.
Do the words we speak, the behaviors we model, and the expectations we convey shape our children’s character?
The Apostle Paul penned these inspired words to his friends in the church at Philippi, “What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you” (Philippians 4:9).
Jerry Bridges, author, speaker, and Navigators staff member, wrote, “The level of our obedience is most often determined by the behavior standard of other Christians around us” (The Discipline of Grace, page 116). Read the rest of this entry »1 Comment »
A. W. Tozer, widely regarded as one of the most perceptive writers in the 20th century, said, “The Word of God well understood and religiously obeyed is the shortest route to spiritual perfection. And we must not select a few favorite passages to the exclusion of others. Nothing less than a whole Bible can make a whole Christian.”
God has given us amazing minds. These powerful instruments possess an almost limitless capacity to remember. Memorizing Bible verses is a skill and discipline that yields lifelong rewards (Joshua 1:8; Psalm 1:2-3). Learn Bible verses together with your child. Discover the marvelous mental potential that God has given to you. Read the rest of this entry »1 Comment »
Ray Stedman, noted pastor and Biblical expositor said, “Forgiveness, of course, is the virtue we most enjoy, and least employ, in our Christian experience. We all love to be forgiven – we expect it, and want it. But we find it a struggle to forgive; we resist it, and refuse oftentimes to do it.”
Corrie Ten Boom, a Christian woman who survived a Nazi concentration camp during the Holocaust, said, “Forgiveness is to set a prisoner free, and to realize the prisoner was you.”
Forgiveness is a foundational Bible truth. Why is forgiveness important? The best answer is because Jesus commanded us to forgive others. Scripture clearly communicates that if we don’t forgive, we won’t be forgiven: “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins” (Matthew 6:14-16). Read the rest of this entry »No Comments »
Imagine having young believers who:
- Understand and embrace the Biblical basis for missions.
- Genuinely care about people everywhere who await the life-giving Gospel message.
- Are ready to follow Christ wherever He leads.
To become fully equipped disciples, young believers need consistent, clear, and systematic instruction. Children’s workers have only 1-3 hours per week to influence young hearts and minds for God’s glory. Unless churches proactively insert missions education, children miss this essential component. Read the rest of this entry »No Comments »
The National Study of Youth and Religion recently released the results of an important research project. It represents one of the most ambitious and comprehensive studies of U.S. youth ever undertaken.
After reviewing the findings, we could not help but think about the connection between what is taught in the pre-teen years and how that influences teen attitudes and behaviors. As such, here are four key elements that can help your kids become devoted followers of Jesus for life. Read the rest of this entry »2 Comments »
Living For Christ
In the 1800s, God prompted Rev. E. P. Scott, a missionary in India, to undertake a dangerous task. Against the advice of his fellow missionaries, Scott set out alone to visit a remote village. He was determined to share the Gospel with a notoriously savage tribe.
Just before Scott reached his destination, fierce warriors surrounded him and pointed their spears at him. Expecting to die, Scott took out his violin (which he always carried with him), closed his eyes, and began to play and sing “All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name”, in the native language of the warriors.
Opening his eyes he saw that the natives had lowered their weapons and some were in tears. E. P. Scott spent the rest of his life ministering to these primitive people.
Kids can live courageously, victoriously, and in the POWER of Jesus’ name, too. Read the rest of this entry »2 Comments »
Nurture Life-long Faith
Whether you are a Sunday school teacher, volunteer, leader, or parent, you are vital in nurturing children’s faith. The following can help you guide and grow children toward a deeper, life-long faith.
The Situation: Children ask, “Can you prove it?” Some kids are taught to believe that the scientific method is the ultimate test of validity. In Read the rest of this entry »1 Comment »
People don’t buy bulbs, tires, or cars. We buy light, safety, and experiences.
When recruiting volunteers, how you position your ministry is important. For instance, you could say, “We need your help with the kids today.” Or you might try, “Did you know that nearly 50% of all Americans who accept Jesus as their Savior do so before reaching the age of 13? We need two leaders willing to make an eternal difference in the hearts and lives of kids.”
Which appeal sounds more compelling to you? Motivate your people by emphasizing the eternal benefits. Read the rest of this entry »No Comments »
Walter A. Henrichsen writes, “Discipling must begin with our children if it is ever to affect the rest of our culture. Before we go looking for people to disciple, we should start with our own families. For a few short years, God has entrusted our children to our care. Whether for good or bad, we will mark them for eternity.”
The Bible directs us to: “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it” (Proverbs 22:6). Our primary goal is for our kids to love God – for them to learn to know Him, walk with Him and serve Him. Read the rest of this entry »7 Comments »
In his book, The Holy Spirit, Billy Graham writes that discipleship is vital to the process of establishing new believers in their faith:
“One of the first verses of Scripture that Dawson Trotman, founder of The Navigators, made me memorize was, ‘The things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also’ (2 Timothy 2:2, KJV). This is a little like a mathematical formula for spreading the gospel and enlarging the Church. Paul taught Timothy. Timothy shared what he knew with faithful men; these faithful men would then teach others also. And so the process goes on and on. If every believer followed this pattern, the Church would reach the entire world with the gospel in one generation. Mass crusades, in which I believe and to which I have committed my life, will never finish the Great Commission; but a one-by-one ministry will.” Read the rest of this entry »2 Comments »