Spiritual preparation is required for a discipling ministry. Put off the old self and put on the new self activates love as you are renewed by God's word. The normal duties of family and work provide natural opportunities to share God's word with wisdom and grace. Prayer opens the door for discipleship opportunities of mutual encouragement and prayer so people can fulfill the ministry they received from God.
Put Off the Old Self and Put on the New Self
They set their hearts and minds on things above where Christ was seated at the right hand of God. They died with their life hidden in Christ. They appeared with Him in glory. They put to death their earthly nature including sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed that described idolatry causing God's wrath. They put off their old self of anger, rage, malice, slander, filthy language and lying. They put on the new self renewed in knowledge according to the image of Christ (Col. 3:1-11). Put off the old self and put on the new self through renewal in God's word.
Put on Love and Indwelling of God's Word
As God's chosen people, they clothed themselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. They bore and forgave grievances against one another. They put on love bounding them together in perfect unity. The peace of Christ and thankfulness ruled in their hearts as members of one body. The word of Christ dwell in them richly as they taught, admonished one another with all wisdom and sang psalms and spiritual songs with gratitude in their hearts to God. They did everything in word or deed in the name of Jesus and thanked God (Col. 3:12-17). Put on love by letting God's word dwell in you through teaching, admonishing and expressing gratitude.
Submit to Authorities for Reward
Wives submitted to their husbands as fitting in the Lord. Husbands loved their wives and were not harsh. Children obeyed their parents in everything to please God. Fathers did not embitter their children to prevent discouragement. Employees obeyed their supervisors in everything with sincerity of heart and reverence of the Lord. They worked heartily serving Christ, not men, and received an inheritance from Him as a reward. Those who did wrong were repaid for their wrong. Supervisors provided their employees what was right and fair because they had a Master in heaven (Col. 3:18-4:1). Submit to delegated authorities in family and work relationships in order to earn heavenly reward.
Pray for Open Doors to Share God's Word
Be watchful, thankful and devoted to prayer. Ask God to open doors in proclaiming clearly the mystery of Christ. Make the most of every opportunity in speaking with wisdom and grace that was seasoned with salt so they knew how to answer everyone (Col. 4:2-6). Be prayerful so God opens doors to speak God's word with clarity, wisdom and grace.
Encourage and Connect People into Ministry
Paul sent Tychicus and Onesimus so they would be encouraged about his circumstances. Mark and Justus sent greetings as the only Jews among his fellow workers for the kingdom of God who also comforted Paul. Epaphras always wrestled in prayer for them to stand firm, fully assured and mature in God's will. Luke, the doctor, and Demas sent greetings. Paul sent greetings to the brothers at Laodicea, Nympha and the church in her house. He asked that his letter be read to them and to the church of the Laodiceans. He also wanted them to read the letter from the Laodiceans. Paul wanted them to tell Archippus to complete the work he received in the Lord (Col. 4:7-18). Connect people to pray, encourage and minister together so each one discovers the ministry they received from the Lord.
Stay prayerful as you consider the following process in preparing for a discipleship ministry:
1. Put off the old self and put on the new self through renewal in God's word
2. Put on love by letting God's word dwell in you through teaching, admonishing and expressing gratitude
3. Submit to delegated authorities in family and work relationships in order to earn heavenly reward
4. Be prayerful so God opens doors to speak God's word with clarity, wisdom and grace
5. Connect people to pray, encourage and minister together so each one discovers the ministry they received from the Lord