The Necessity of Discipleship
Discipleship has been the theme here at Emily Wesleyan Church for the better part of the last month as we have introduced a discipleship pathway. The necessity of discipleship can’t be overstated; Dietrich Bonhoeffer describes it this way, “Christianity without discipleship is always Christianity without Christ.” In Galatians 6:1-3 being a disciple is portrayed as being a helper to others, “Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are Godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important.”
We can look to the raising of young mountain goats to see a practicable example of how we should be helping other Christians in their faith walk. Douglas Chadwick in National Geographic writes that kids of mountain goats are “born to romp – and leap, twist, skip, prance… High spirits and wandering attention can be fatal for young goats. Fortunately, nannies dote on their offspring, tending them from the downhill side to block falls…” What a beautiful image for how mature Christians should care for new believers. New Christians will stumble and fall on occasion – that is certain – so we must tend to them from the downhill side, ready to block them when they fall. Tending from the downhill side means staying in regular communication and it something that we all can do if we are willing too put in the effort. We all can walk with a young Christian until they reach maturity.