The Complexity of Christianity

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candle serenity
(Photo credit: Phil Dowsing Creative)

I was invited for an “Ask The Pastor” night last week and brought along this handout I’d been working on.  I sat in front of the white board and asked myself “If I am going to help the people in this church grow as Christians, then what does a fully functional disciple of Jesus look like?”  And I started to write.  And write.  And write.  And came up with something so complicated it almost made me cry.  No wonder many ministers are tearing their hair out trying to simplify their church’s discipleship process.

I’d love some feedback on this:

Simple Discipleship?

A Fully Functional Disciple of Jesus…

 …Needs…

Emotional Support

Financial Support

Help with Family Issues

A Place to “Be Real”

Excellent, Uplifting, Moving Spiritual Experiences

Friends, Confidants, Brothers and Sisters

A Place to Serve with their gifts Meaningfully

A Places to Escape Pain

To be Challenged

Accountability to an “Equal”

Accountability to Someone in Authority

Clear Boundaries

Freedom to Make Mistakes

To Know their Purpose and Worth

To Experience God’s Touch

…Knows…

Soteriology: Study of Salvation

Apologetics: Defending the Faith

Hermeneutics: How to Study the Bible

Systematic Theology: Truths about God

Homiletics: How to Apply the Bible to Life

Sacraments: Communion and Baptism

Eschatology: End Times, Heaven, Hell

Pneumatology: The Holy Spirit, Spiritual Gifts

Christology: The Life of Christ

World Religions: Cults and Other Faiths

Evangelism: How to Share Your Faith

Creationism: How Everything Came to Be

Ecclesiology: How the Church Functions

Church Discipline: Confrontational and Corrective Measures in the Church

Spiritual Disciplines: Methods to Grow Deeper

Missiology: God’s Work in the World

…Does…

Mercy: Acts of Kindness

Forgiveness: Asking and Giving

Peacemaking: In Life, For Others

Giving: Tithing and Generosity

Service: God, Church, World

Encourages: Mentoring, Discipline

Submits: God, Authority, Others

Studies: See “Knows”

Prays: Private and Corporate

Suffers Well: Rejoicing Always

Worships: Lifestyle of Worship

Attends: Shows up to Learn, Work

Grows: Pursues Christlikeness

Sacraments: Baptism/Communion

What do you think?  Did I miss any?  Why is this so complicated?  Or is it?

One thought on “The Complexity of Christianity

    nopew said:
    July 31, 2012 at 11:35 am

    The list is valid, but not the sum. The simple truth, very difficult to live, is, “I consider everything else worthless because I’m much better off knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. It’s because of him that I think of everything as worthless. I threw it all away in order to gain Christ
    (Philippians 3:8 God’s Word). Note, “everything”, including doctrine, ideas, programmes, and even lists! Paul helped win thousands without a list…

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