The Vineyard – The Sad Statistics
Stay joined together with me, and follow my teachings.
If you do this, you can ask for anything you want, and it will be given to you.
My Father is glorified by this:
that you produce much fruit and prove to be My disciples.
Greg Ogden (Executive Pastor of Discipleship, Christ Church of Oak Brook) wrote the following appraisal: The Discipleship Deficit: Where Have All the Disciples Gone? (Knowing and Doing) Here are a few quotes from the article.
“According to Barna Research, fewer than one in five born-again adults has any specific and measurable goals related to his or her own spiritual development. Barna interviewed hundreds of people, including church leaders and pastors, and yet, shockingly, he concluded,’ Not one of the adults we interviewed said that their goal in life was to be a committed follower of Jesus Christ or to make disciples of the entire world—or even their entire block.’
The Scriptures picture all believers as those who share the story of their faith in Christ with others; in reality. We are called to be storytellers. The Bible spins a love story of God’s pursuit of wayward humanity. For those who have been captured by Jesus Christ, we each have a story to tell of how God chased us down and embraced us in his loving arms. In so doing, the Lord has written us as characters into his grand redemptive drama. We each have an assigned part to play on the stage of history, which is the realm in which God writes his story. As unique as each of us is, there is a common story line written into the script for each of our lives. “You shall be my witnesses,” Jesus says (Acts 1:8). We each have our story, a story to tell. For it is in the sharing of the story that others come to find that they too have been written into this redemptive drama.
How are we doing in telling the story? When believers are asked if they have intentionally built a relationship with someone with the hope of being able to lead the person to Christ, only one in ten could affirm that they had. “Fewer than one in five said that they knew a nonbeliever well enough that they could share their faith with an individual in a context of trust and credibility.”
Relative to “producing fruit” and “making disciples“, there’s a “Discipleship Deficit” in the churches of the US. This is the “cold, hard” fact! Let’s make it personal. Have you or a fellow follower of Jesus discipled one nonbeliever to maturity in Christ?
I have previously written about this situation. However, the implications of John 15:8 are radically important for those who profess personal attachment to Jesus!