Prayer – Fellowship – People – Mission – Discipleship – Worship & Teaching – Buildings

From TKC, we gained a sense of the need for discipleship. What exactly does it mean? It simply means to follow Jesus. But that answer prompts consequences. To follow Jesus, we need to know Jesus; which means being able to recognise Him; which means being shown His ways, who He is, how He works, how others learn and walk with Him. That way we will know Jesus and know that we are truly following Him.

Why do we need others in this exercise? On our own, we can continue unchecked and find ourselves highlighting practices or ideologies that Jesus is not concerned about or, worse, that Jesus does not want us to follow.

It’s all part of Jesus being the vine and us being branches that are grafted on. If we do not remain in the vine then we are just a cut branch, dead and dying. In his analogy, Jesus did not just end with “be a good branch and stick with me.” He talked about what happens as a result:

This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. (John 15:8)

OK, asks the cynic. What’s in it for me? Apart from the small matter of glory to God and eternal life for us, if we are discipled correctly then there are one or two immediate perks:

And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit. (Acts 13:52)

Loving Jesus is not a stand-still thing. If we are not actively growing in our faith, then our faith is receding and shrinking. To help grow our own faith, we can share it. We share with and encourage each other because we are not just church members, but we are church family, created to worship God with others who are on this journey of a lifetime. This is not the evangelising bit, this is the “OK, I’m on the path – where’s the map? What if I need some refreshment?” bit. Can we squeeze in more Scripture here:

Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. (John 6:35)

What can all this sharing and encouraging – this discipleship – look like?

One of our strengths is our teaching and we want to expand on this – to coordinate further and connect more; to be able to choose accountability with others. We want to focus on Homegroups and similar connections (e.g. the mutual support, learning and growth enjoyed by the Praise Band). More coordination does not mean less individuality; it means more sign-posts as we journey.

We certainly want to look at how we give our time, our skills and our money. As you know, giving has been down through the period of Lockdown, and any resumption or increase in giving levels would be welcome, but perhaps you have a skill (electrician, will-writing, tutoring etc?) that could help others through the week? We want to be a church family for whom it is all more than just a Sunday.

What skill or talent do you have to offer? What do you need from others? Please contact the church office – office@comelybankchurch.com with your input.

[from Timothy Pitt]

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