Every Christian has been called to be diligent about His master's business. Those orders were what Christians call the great commission. If we are serious about the Great Commission, then our lives should reflect the implementation of those tasks:
- integrate into the Body of Christ
- teach the Word
Here is the pushback: Not everyone is ready to buckle down, reprioritize their life and exhibit self-discipline, transparency and accountability. That is why Paul stated that we are to train faithful men (and women). Pour our lives into those that show the desire to follow Jesus. Discipleship is as much an honor as it is a task.
Every Christian can better implement those core tasks by relationships and meetings designed around three essential criteria.
Criteria number One: Meet with a small core group
Presently I have taken the steps to reshape my week to include men in serious steps of accountability and discipleship. Niel Cole's book on Life Transformation Groups has been helpful in fleshing out some of those steps. Here is what it is designed to be:
A Life Transformation Group is made up of two to three people, all of the same gender, who meet weekly for personal accountability in the areas of their spiritual growth and development. A group should not grow beyond three but multiply into two groups of two rather than a single group of four. If a fourth person is added to the group, it is recommended that the group consider itself “pregnant” and ready to give birth to a second group. After the fourth person has demonstrated sufficient faithfulness to the group for two to three weeks, the group should multiply into two groups of two.
Criteria number Two: Focus on the Word
Right now I meet with two groups of three men each and we commit to read 25 chapters of the bible each week. We then meet for breakfast and discuss what God is addressing in our lives. Additionally, we use ten questions proposed by Niel as a basis of openness and accountability.
1. Have you been a testimony this week to the greatness of Jesus Christ with both your words and actions?
2. Have you been exposed to sexually alluring material or dishonored another with sexual thoughts this week?
3. Has the desire for money, material possessions, or status at any time controlled your thoughts, conversations, or behavior?
4. Have you damaged another person by words, either behind their back or face to face?
5. Have you been honoring, understanding, and generous in important relationships this week?
6. Have you given in to an addictive behavior this past week?
7. Have you continued to remain angry toward another?
8. Have you secretly winced for another’s mis-fortune so that you might excel?
9. Did you finish the scripture reading and hear from God? What are you going to do about it?
10.Have you been completely honest with me?
Criteria number Three: Pray for each other's responsibilities
Allright, true confession. Often I find that my prayer life is designed to address issues to be resolved - and the main purpose is in oder that my life become more comfortable.
This task focusses on the core values of the Great Commission. Name the person that burdens your heart and needs to hear of Jesus. Who has come to Christ and must be discipled? Which person are you seeking to integrate into the Body? That puts the focus on the Kingdom. Hold each other to the responsibility for being busy about His work. Be willing to quit meeting if the participants shift the focus away from Life Transformation.
Consider starting a group to meet regularly. Let's not just talk Great Commission, let's be busy about accomplishing the Great Commission.
You can reach chapter eight from Niel Cole's book: Cultivating a Life for God - here!