Friday, October 28, 2011

178. Discipleship and the Person of Peace Part 3

The more I have been reflecting on the three components of Observation, Demonstration, Invitation, I realized I may have left out a really important component: Revelation. Selecting people to disciple and invest our life in is probably one of the most important decisions we can make. As such, hearing form the Father on the matter becomes really important. If you notice in Luke 6, when Jesus selects the 12 out of the larger group of disciples, Jesus spends all night in prayer.

Why so much time in prayer, seeking the Fathers counsel and revelation? Why not just trust your intuition and observations? Well, inviting people into a discipling relationship means you will be doing several things:

1. Investing a lot of time in them.
2. Investing a lot of your spiritual capital in them.
3. Investing your reputation in them.

With all of this investing going on, you want to make sure you will be able to get a return on that investment. Paul had this same thing in mind when he said in II Timothy 2:2 "And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also." Paul was directing Timothy to invest his life, his time, his spiritual capital, not in just anybody. No, you don't just invest really important things arbitrarily. Even Jesus alludes to this principle when he tells us not to cast our pearls before swine. Paul tells Timothy to invest in people who had demonstrated faithfulness, and had the capacity to transmit the message onto others. So putting these three principles together of Observation, Demonstration and Revelation, I have come up with a triangle to illustrate the principles behind Invitation. 

The idea here is that before you invite someone into a relationship where you will be pouring all kinds of valuable things into them, there should be a period of observation where you can see what kind of person they are and whether or not there is any chemistry there. They need to be able to demonstrate that they are teachable and have the capacity to pass along what you will invest in them. And before you jump to conclusions, you should spend some time in prayer and seek revelation from the Father as to who you invest in.  Once you have passed through observation, demonstration, and revelation, you are ready to initiate a formal invitation for someone to come along side of you for a season and be trained by you in the ways of following of Jesus.

Skipping one of these components can set you up for making a bad investment. Even Jesus had one of his 12 not give a return on investment. Using the economic metaphor, the investment in Judas Iscariot went bankrupt. Return on investment (ROI) was nill. 

Part of being and making disciples is stewarding the spiritual capital that God has given us and investing it wisely. Could this, in part, be a link to understanding some of the parables Jesus tells in the gospel of Luke pertaining to the investment of talents etc. ??? Something to think about.

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