Does this describe your small group time in church? Is this how you practice biblical counseling on a personal, informal basis in your local church? If this is you, praise the Lord with me please! If not, let’s work on it .
We’ve put together 4 main points to help us remember how to practice personal counseling and discipleship everyday. Counsel does not have to be formal but can be expressed informally.
- LOVE and encourage the fellow believers that God has placed in your life.
Bake them cookies, write them notes of encouragement, or praise them for how they are reflecting the love and character of Christ.
- ASK your friend how you can pray for them.
- PRAY for them to love the Lord with all of their soul, might, and strength. God hears our prayers! And it brings a burden off of our hearts once we tell our Creator our worries. (1 Peter 5:7)
- SHARE your struggles with fellow believers. Ask them for wise biblical counsel and advice on how to apply the Word so you can grow in that specific area. In what ways can I put off sin, renew my mind, and put on the mind of Christ? Are there any Scriptures on this topic that can help me in this area of struggle?
- SEEK to give wise, biblical counsel not based on personal opinions but on the Word of God. Ask the Holy Spirit to illuminate His truths.
As you can tell, discipleship is a mutual-benefit relationship. Not only do you offer wise counsel to your friends/disciples, but they give wise counsel to you! It’s a win-win relationship and in the end, you’re both held accountable for your thoughts, words, actions.
We recommend meeting with your disciple/Trusted Christian Friend on a regular basis. It will take great humility, honesty, and openness to share your struggles with others. But this is the whole process of progressive sanctification, isn’t it? The Christian life isn’t supposed to be easy; it’s gonna be hard as Matthew 7:13-14 reminds us:
“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. 14 For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few. ~ Matthew 7:13-14
-Mark and Rachel Shaw (making disciples formally and informally)