INsourcing: Bringing Discipleship Back to the Local Church
By Randy Pope with Kitti Murray
In this book, Pope and Murray address discipleship. How do we disciple in the church? Are we missing our target? Do we know what our target is? What does a mature christian look like? Are we setting the bar high enough or merely settling? These are serious questions that must be asked. I also think this book has come to the right generation to help us really pursue answering these questions. For the most part, I think a lot of us have failed to ask the right questions. We have settled for what we think a mature follower of Christ should be.
This book sets the standards that we should be pursuing as disciples of Christ. In Matthew 28, after the resurrection, Jesus told us what the standard was for discipleship, even showed us our aim. He told his disciples:
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, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. (Mt 28:19-20)
We have been shown what discipleship should look like. It is life-on-life ministry. Jesus showed us. Jesus did not teach in the synagogue then send the disciples on their way for the remained of the week. He lived among them. He spent great time with them, just as Paul did with Timothy. This is the best way to impact others, and let the light of God shine. It is a matter of digging deeper in our relationships of a few, so that we can impact others in their walk with Christ and how they live out their lives for Him. It is about the fellowship and growing together in Christ. Titus 2 also talks about mentoring others. So, we know the strategy in this book is very biblical.
Pope and his church leaders came up with the “teams” approach. It is a biblical approach to pursuing missional discipleship. Making disciples is more than seeing people go forward. It is continuing to see them through. It is ministering to believers, continuing to teach, helping one another grow in Christ, letting others benefit from our walk in Christ and our experiences, and share the Gospel with others. It is continuing to help one another live out the Gospel–learning what it will look like in our lives, and learning how to grow in Christ. Having prayer at the core of it all.
I love the examples given in this book. The examples of the women’s small group was particularly valuable to me in seeing how a small group is at work in the discipleship process. In small discipleship groups, there can be a merge of balancing teaching with fellowship and growing in developing spiritual disciples and learning how to spend time with Christ… Focusing on Christ and the community aspect that Christ intended for the church, so that we can grow together!
The book encouraged me in thinking how I can pursue a similar approach to discipleship using some of the aspects mentioned in the book. Also, it showed me how much we need to pursue His truth and how Jesus showed us we can lead others to Him. It all comes from life on life ministry. By sharing our lives with others, we can continue to pursue discipleship and growing in Christ together!