What does it take to make disciples? It takes a marriage, a pregnancy, labor and delivery, and nurturing.
Marriage - Paul said "I do" to Jesus and was baptized (Acts 9:18). He lived not for himself but out of love for the Lord (see 2 Cor 5:14-15).
Pregnancy - Paul spent his life birthing communities (see Gal 4:19). Like a mother, he carried, fed, and nourished them at the expense of his own health. He shielded them by taking the attacks of the evil one upon himself.
Laboranddelivery - Paul had a rough labor in giving birth to Timothy at Lystra. Youthful Timothy would have been stunned to see Paul stoned and left for dead (Acts 14:19). He would have been even more astounded to see Paul painfully rise and return fearlessly into the town to encourage the believers! (Acts 14:20) How could Timothy help but be filled with zeal for the Lord after such a display of courage?
Nurturing - Paul returned to Lystra a second time and brought Timothy on his second missionary journey (Acts 16:1-3). He personally trained and discipled Timothy. Together, they experienced constant Scripture teaching, the life of prayer, and the joy of building God's Church.
Although Timothy caused Paul "labor pains" (Gal 4:19), he brought many to the Lord and gave delight to Paul's heart (see Phil 4:20ff). Be like Paul. "Make" disciples (Mt 28:19).
Prayer: Father, I want to give You a large family. Make me fertile for You.
Promise: "Remove the plank from your own eye first; then you will see clearly enough to remove the speck from your brother's eye." —Lk 6:42
Praise: Dr. Walt witnesses gently to his patients and prays with them during office visits.
(This teaching was submitted by one of our editors.)
Nihil obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, February 1, 1997
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 4, 1997
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