It wasn’t a moment, it was a couple of years starting in 2016, God placed this stirring upon my heart. I remember feeling irritated from my own lack of making disciples in my home and in my church. I was frustrated at how we call programs and preaching discipleship as an end—instead of a part. It made no sense to me. This journey led me to look at the Gospel.
Curiosity led to a biblical method
I began to ask these fundamental questions:
- What is a Christian?
- What does discipleship mean?
- How does one live this out if he's not a pastor?
This motivated me to write a book called Ordinary Radicals. There was an increasing concern as a pastor for my church and for our people to answer these questions. It is important for the body of Christ to relearn lessons of basic Christian discipleship.
A return to Christ-centered discipleship
Today, there is so much confusion about disciplining our children. Discipleship has often been made so complex that Christians feel as if they are not adequate enough to teach their kids. Discipleship is simple and straightforward for the ordinary fathers such as you and I. We are called to disciple and equip them as disciples of Jesus Christ.
Biblical fatherhood knows that making disciples starts by being faithful to the gospel. Christian parents must ignite this vision as we articulate and embrace within the Christian community. Discipleship is centering around the person of Jesus. Making disciples who make disciples ought to be the normal Christian life. This task is not reserved only for “radical” Christians who get their act together. Disciple-making is NOT as Daniel Im would say, “The sage on the stage, but a guide on the side.” You’re walking alongside your children—pointing them toward Christ.
Discipleship means to be guided from where you are now to where Christ wants you to be. Therefore, the goal is not a certain destination but is a direction of life you move from where you are to where God is calling along with your children. Discipleship is an imperative statement for the Christian. Spiritual growth is not an option—it’s a biblical mandate. Therefore, as fathers, discipleship is no longer optional. Either you’re making excuses or making disciples. The question is, which one are you doing?
Disciple making is for ordinary dads like you and me
G. K. Chesterton argued most of what must be done to make the world go ’round is done by the average Joe who does not do it perfectly—or sometimes even well. God wants to use ordinary people such as you and me. This task is simple enough for the “ordinary” church member to follow and understand yet Christ commission is challenging enough for the seasoned theologian to come away troubled in their soul. As godly husbands and fathers, we are dependent on grace for this call.
As the Prince of Preachers Charles Spurgeon said, “In Jesus the weak are strong, and the defenseless safe; they could not be stronger if they were giants, or safer if they were in heaven. Faith gives to men on earth the protection of the God of heaven.” If you’re wondering whether you have been effective and you’re on the right path in discipling your children, start today. If you want to start discipling the next generation within your home, be encouraged, the scriptures affirm your desire and Christ will help you take the first step by grace. This calling as Christians to reach greater heights with Jesus cannot be accomplished on our own.
What is the faith of your children worth?
What is the faith of the next generation worth? Everything. It is worth any change necessary to pass to your children the faith that has been passed down throughout the centuries. If you’re wanting to make the most out of this life you've been given, join with me in this movement; the Ordinary Radical movement for King Jesus. I am convinced of this; as King Jesus stirs our soul and mind in a deeper level of discipleship leads to the inevitable result of a greater Gospel advance.
I pray radical discipleship to which all believers are entrusted—will become more and more ordinary, for the glory of God and the advance of His mission and kingdom.
About the author > Jonathan Hayashi, M. Div.
Jonathan (B.A. and M.A., Moody Theological Seminary) is on pastoral staff at First Baptist Church in Troy, MO. He is a doctoral student at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He has served at an inner-city church in Chicago, IL and taught Apologetics/Philosophy at the PGM center. He is married to Kennedi and has two daughters. Find him on Twitter and his blog Evangelica Sola. Grab his Field Guide Making Lemonade.
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