The parting command of Jesus, what is often known as “The Great Commission” (Matthew 28:19-20), was to make disciples. Done correctly, we all make disciples who then go on to make other disciples who go out and make more disciples. This is the organic way that the church, and ultimately the message of Jesus, was designed to be spread throughout the world.
If we don’t make disciples who will make other disciples, then the beautiful message of Jesus gets muted and the people who most need to hear the truth might never encounter it. So it’s troubling how so many people pray a prayer to accept Jesus and never do anything beyond that. The truth is we all make disciples every day. The only question is what kind of disciples we are creating.
People are always watching us. Whether it is our family, friends, or co-workers, people are watching. Everything we do impacts those around us. If they look up to us and respect us, they will emulate what we do. Emulation is another word for discipleship, so your actions are creating disciples. Whatever you do, you are encouraging someone else to do the same. You are making disciples of you. If your life is a reflection of Jesus, then people copying what you do is a good thing. If you are not reflecting Jesus, then you are making disciples who are turning away from God’s plan for them.
Whether we like it or not, we are making disciples every day. Kids imitate their parents, and someday their own kids will emulate them. You are creating disciples who are creating disciples. This is why it is so important to make certain every action is framed with Jesus. If you want to develop new disciples of Jesus, you have to act like Jesus… all the time! Now I realize none of us are perfect. We all slip and fail. But even in those moments when we miss the mark, we build disciples based on how we respond to the failure.
It can be a little overwhelming to consider, but it doesn’t change the fact that this is truth. Every action, every word, every decision of your life is making disciples. What kind of disciples are you making? Are you living your life in such a way that when people copy you they will actually be doing the work of Jesus? If not, you need to make some changes. We all do. We all must come to grips with the reality we are making disciples every day.
When I meet Jesus, I want to be able to look behind and be proud of the disciples I have created for His glory. I don’t want to be ashamed of my legacy. I want my legacy to be nothing more or less than the disciples I leave behind that carry on the work of Jesus. After all, it’s not about me or you; it’s all about Jesus. When we make disciples of Jesus who in turn make disciples of Jesus, we will see a glimpse of His Kingdom in our midst. That’s the world I want to live in. Those are the kind of disciples I want to make. We all make disciples; which kind are you creating today?