As I think about disciplining two things jump out to me.
First, presence is important as you are walking life with people, sharing in their lives, and them sharing in your life. You are better able to see the ares of growth that are needed in them.
When Jesus called his first disciples, he told them to come follow me! This call was a call to walk with him and be part of his life and his ministry. To see first hand his life, and for him to see theirs.
It was not a call of far-ness, but a call of nearness and closeness. He was inviting them to himself and his way of living, thinking, acting, and loving.
So often I feel we can teach discipleship from a distances, but Jesus taught it up close and personal. He would challenge his disciples to go and make disciples, as he had made them.
Love for our disciples
Second, a deep love for those you disciple must happen. Discipleship is a process that involves many things, but love must bind them all together.
Think about it, how can you truly disciple someone that you don’t really love, that you don’t have a deep heart connection to. I believe the deeper that love, the deeper the effectiveness of the discipleship.
Paul often told us of his love for his disciples. In 2 Timothy 2:1-2 he called Timothy my beloved son. In Titus 1:4 he also called Titus his beloved son. Paul was always tell us how much he loved those he discipled.
We are told that the love towards other believers is the evidence of our being a member of God’s family (1 John 3:10).
I believe that this is the same for those we disciple; we must love them. This is the truest evidence that they are our disciples. Not our, in that we want them to be us, but ours in that they have our heart, and they have become dear to us.
Love is defined and elaborated on in 1 Corinthians 13:1-13. These verses show us that love is not an emotion; it is action. Discipleship in action will not only be about teaching God’s truth, but also about showing love in the process.
When Jesus gave the command to go and make disciples, he said that they were to teach them every thing he taught them. If you look at Jesus’ teaching’s, love speaks the loudest, and we should not miss that as we disciple others.