I want this to encourage YOU to greater things!! The first Discipling I did was almost exactly 40 years ago (late 1960's). I was around 30 years old, and teaching 10-12 year old Primary children. During Teacher Training the Lord had given me a Vision for the hearts and lives of my FUTURE pupils. Once settled into teaching I set about the process of starting an afterschool Meeting to tell my pupils about Jesus! I hit an impenetrable wall. Took almost a year to wear down those who were saying "No!" to my Vision!
But the next year the meetings started. Can you guess what I started teaching them? Doctrine and Practice from the New Testament of course!! (I know you're shocked and surprised!! *haha!!*) The children were from non-churched homes and knew almost NOTHING! So I started with "Who is God". But just 3 or 4 meetings in (I hadn't even GOT to Jesus!) three kids rocked up and said they wanted to accept Jesus!!! I was stunned! (seems they knew 'just enough' from Sunday School).
Meetings continued and more came to the Lord. I was TOTALLY 'winging it', but as soon as there were new converts my spirit said, "I have to TEACH them how to live the Christian life!" I started a Tuesday lunchtime meeting just for the converts. I taught them how to pray, read the Bible, what it meant to live as a Christian. Like SPONGES, they soaked this all up, even coming to me before and after school asking questions!!! Just 10 and 11 years old - how ASTONISHING!!!
SEEMS THAT I WAS DISCIPLING...
I had NO IDEA that I was "discipling" them!! My heart simply said, "TEACH THEM!!" So I DID! It was years afterwards the church 'rediscovered' discipling - and I saw what I'd been doing!! I continued discipling the best kids when they went to High School. I offered to teach them a musical instrument for FREE! Their unbelieving parents jumped at this, brought them to our place each Saturday, I taught music - then we Discipled!! (do you just love it!!)
But during their High School I left far North Queensland and teaching (because of my ill-health), and came way down South to Brisbane. So now what? How to DISCIPLE them now?? No problemo!! It was the early '70's by now, and we just wrote 10 and 12 page letters back and forth about the Lord. I was training them for LIFE!!
They continued to grow in the Lord. Now in 2009 they are married, have kids who belong to the Lord, who in turn have little children they are bringing up to love Jesus!!! 2 TIMOTHY 2:2 And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. See, the Scriptures are TRUE and they do WORK!!!
Some went into full-time service for God. WOW!! But the story continues: the Meetings I started way up North were ultimately copied by others, and so a new work started for Primary Age children. I was asked to head up the Committee running it. Then my health collapsed, I had to resign, went to bed for 3 years, and eventually quite lost touch with the work I'd started here in our large State of Queensland.
A PROPHECY I DID NOT UNDERSTAND
Meantime, during the 1980's I was in bed twice for some years (and in hospital). I read the Scriptures A LOT!! At one point, over and over the Lord told me this strange thing via His Word, that: "I would be the father of many children around the world." I took "children" to mean adults, as it usually does in the Bible, but I was ill and in bed so what on earth did He mean...
Maybe 15 more years passed with NO CLUES. I was talking by phone to the man who I had to fight to start my Meetings initially. He told me that my Meeting format had gone to other Australian States, then to other countries. I was stunned!! But there was more! Still from Queensland this children's work GREW - via people who had initially been one of my converts, came to the Lord through them, or had got involved in the growing work!
A VISION CAN GROW!
That is, my VISION had been taken up by OTHERS (unknown to me), and had grown into a WORLDWIDE work for CHILDREN, with a Queensland lady as the World Head!!! (they even get Muslim kids converted!!!) It reaches into far-flung places around the world like Chile, Russia, Nigeria, and even the Middle East! Our Queensland lady travels the world constantly where she meets with children's workers from countries all over the world.
They share, help and support each other, prepare new teaching ideas, pray, and most of all encourage each other. This stared with just one man who was no marvellous Christian, but had a burning Vision to reach for the Lord Jesus the children he taught. You can see where it led!!!! Apparently, today I am the father of many children around the world *total, utter shock!* - just like the Lord's prophecy!!! MY PRAYER: that this will encourage YOU to keep learning and finding what He wants you to do!!!
- BM (with his Lady)