risky business


Do you think Jesus fretted over which men to choose as His disciples?   He would, after all, have only a short time to train them. The work of establishing the church would then be in their hands. We know that He prayed before choosing them, but I doubt that he did much hand-wringing over the matter .   He had only a pool of frail humanity with whom to work.

Would you have chosen the same ragged bunch? Would you want to disciple the fickle-hearted likes of Peter and the others. What if they didn’t follow through? What if some fell away? What if they just didn’t get it? Making disciples is a risky venture!

People ask me questions all the time about how to pick disciples.   “What if the people you choose don’t follow through?” “What will your work like in two or three years.” “How can you be sure multiplying won’t break down?” My answer, and it’s not always well received, is this: “I can’t be sure of anything. I don’t always know who will follow through and who won’t. Some people will likely quit. I‘m very confident of this, however: Doing nothing is not an option! Failing to try will insure total and complete failure!” The “Great Commission” was not a ‘great suggestion’ – it was a command. We’re not given the option of sitting on the fence (or passively in the pew). The stakes are high. We have to do something!”

Making disciples isn’t complicated, but it does require intentional effort – and risks!  Don’t be afraid to try. Chances are you’ll make mistakes along the way, but occasional misfiring is far better than doing nothing. Fear is the enemy’s tool to keep us from trying. Playing it safe may mean that you never mess up, but it’s also a sure path to failure and ultimate judgment. Remember the guy who buried his talent. (Matthew 25:24-30)

“He who wants to save his life will lose it, but he who loses his life for the sake of the kingdom will save it for life eternal. – Jesus

“The person who risks nothing does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn and feel and change and grow and love and live.” – Leo Buscaglia

“Perseverance does not mean ‘perfection.’ It means we keep going.” Eugene Peterson

Jesus didn’t start with a band of stellar prospects, but look at the result. God is in the business of transforming broken people – even men and women like me and you. Persevere in trying to make disciples. Let us know how we can help you start a discipling network.

Be a risk-taker!

Mike Stroud