Want to Start Discipling But Don’t Know How?

Lori Joiner
“One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers – Simon, also called Peter, and Andrew – throwing a net into the water, for they fished for a living. Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” And they left their nets at once and followed him.”

Matthew 4:18-29

Often when people read these verses they are captured by the thought that they left their nets immediately when Jesus called them. And that is no small thing indeed. However I am captured that Jesus said he would show them how to fish for people.

Jesus tells us his primary purpose in calling these men, “I will show you how to fish for people.” They would not just be companions or road trip buddies, he desired to teach them something – He would be their discipler.

He taught them how to fish for men, but just as any good discipler would, he taught and modeled for them many other crucial lessons like how to pray, who the Holy Spirit is, what to do after he left and God’s love, to name a few.

In the same way that Jesus called his disciples 2,000 years ago and made his primary objective clear, we need to make our objective clear when we begin to disciple another person.

“I would love for us to meet together regularly as I would like to teach you the basics of being a follower of Christ.”

“I would like to invite you to come to my house. We could talk about the Bible and what Jesus teaches about being his disciple. The kids could play upstairs while we meet.”

“The conference room is open during lunch times. We could meet once a week there as I would like to teach you some foundational lessons about walking with Christ.”

We engage personally in discipleship when initiating relationships for the purpose of helping others look more like Christ. Instead of being a one-time event like salvation, discipleship is an ongoing process, a journey through which we transfer what we have gained in our relationship with Christ up to this point to another person.

“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:18-20

This verse emphasizes that disciple-making is not merely a good suggestion, not just something to do when we have accomplished all our other goals in life. We are, in the power of the Holy Spirit, to tell others the good news of Jesus Christ and to make disciples. Whatever we’ve learned up to this point about God and His Word, we are to teach to others.

To consider:

  1. How do you feel about teaching another how to grow in their relationship with Christ?
  2. Could you use one of the examples above and initiate with a person this week?
  3. Do you have room in your schedule to make time discipleship?


For more tips on making disciples, check out this article or our discipleship section.


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