“And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” Luke 9:23 ESV
What is your favorite church program? Sunday school, women’s ministry, choir, praise band, small groups, bible studies, missions, etc. My answer may surprise you. The reason why may even challenge your #1 choice.
Of all the programs I have been associated with over the last forty plus years, the one with the greatest impact in my life and in the life of many others is discipleship. Not just being mentored on how to live in Christ, but how to live each day in the workplace with, in, and through Christ. So when we speak about vocational discipleship, we are emphasizing how to integrate faith with our vocational calling.
The reason vocational discipleship rates so high in my book is it takes every area of one’s life into consideration. Most of us will spend more than a third of our waking hours working in the marketplace. When one practices the discipline of following Christ through mutual submission with another believer who likewise has surrendered his business kingdom to our Lord, personal and cultural transformation is exciting to witness.
Through discipleship one learns and puts into practice leadership, serving, giving, loving, communicating, and over one hundred other attributes that imitates our Triune God.
So when vocational discipleship is the prime program of every church, members exercise their gifts and talents for God’s glory and for the sake of others in the immediate church community as well as outside their four walls. Church becomes more relevant when one sees how God is involved in everyday life within the marketplace. In addition, vocational discipleship lays the ground work for saints to capture more ground for God’s Kingdom. Church becomes a 24/7 activity.
The believer grows to trust and rely everyday on God’s faithfulness and grace through the challenges and opportunities presented in the marketplace. When You see God move through the workplace each day, your faith and witness becomes stronger. You learn leadership by following your King’s lead. As you follow the Spirit’s lead, you relate with others by how God relates with you.
So if you have time to become involved with only one church program, my recommendation is vocational discipleship. If your church doesn’t have such a program, maybe the time has come to start one.
Rooting For You in Christ!
Founder & Executive Director
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
* Great Business Emulates a Good God
* Be Radical…Follow Christ!
* Simply The Messenger
* Unequally Married
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