There are stages in the process from being a child to becoming an adult. When a baby is born, we do not expect him to have all the knowledge and skills that it would take to hold down a job at Google with a Master’s degree in engineering. We do not expect that a baby can read, drive, write, play video games, or balance a checkbook. Those are all skills that will be learned as the baby grows and develops with time.
Why then do so many churches think that when a person gets saved, that God gives them all the things they will ever need to study the Bible, and walk in holiness through their sanctification journey? Isn’t this how some churches act? I was a product of this thought process.
When I was saved, I, like so many other people was left at the altar. Saved in a church and thrown to the wolves. A person that has a weapon and does not know how to use it can not be expected to fight well. I was there. I had no mentor. Everything I know now I learned by reading books and the Bible. It might have been easier and I might have progressed faster if I had someone to help me so many years ago.
Discipleship is a process. God does not immediately conform you to the fullness and perfected image of Jesus. If we were made perfect at the point of salvation, then I would imagine that there would be no need for God to leave us here. There is a learning process, a disciple cycle that needs to take place in the life of a new believer.
The new believer starts out as a spiritual infant. They progress to a spiritual child, spiritual teenager, spiritual young adult, and finally a spiritual parent. This process is laid out in Jim Putman’s book, Real Life Discipleship. I wrote a review that you can read here.
Someone needs to come alongside the new believer and help them grow and mature in their discipleship process. As the new believer grows, they will learn and should begin to teach and mentor somebody else. They will become a disciple that makes disciples that make disciples.
Who are you leading to become more like Christ?