The Day the Ostrich Went to Church
Disciple making is essential for growing Christ’s kingdom. While we may have a
grand record for converts, how many of these become disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ? How many of those we convert will make it to heaven?
Now – let the caveat be stated. No church keeps everyone it converts. Jesus had a multitude of followers, but it soon shrunk to his dozen. You won’t keep them all.
No Excuse for Lack of Effort
The “caveat” in the prior paragraph does not provide a reason to not invest in disciple-making. New converts must be guided and nurtured into Christian living. Converts seldom accidently develop into mature Christians. To have a healthy disciple-making church, converts must be intentionally turned into disciples.
But the ostrich is the world’s worst “Mama.” She lays her eggs in the dirt and leaves them to their fate. An ostrich is so busy standing tall and running fast that she can’t slow down and build a nest for her offspring. If we humanized her behavior we might say she was more interested in impressing the onlookers or other full-grown ostriches than the messy work of tending to and feeding babies.
If a baby ostrich does hatch, it will survive on luck or its own efforts. Mom is nowhere to be found. Ostrich churches can be impressive:
- Great buildings
- Impressive choirs with flamboyant robes
- Music that "gets on down"
- Eloquence in the pulpit
- Passion in praise and worship – “they run fast”
- A website that pops
And year after year, the church remains the same size.
Oh, through the year there is revival and harvest. People speak of how many were born again, "Did you hear about what happened last Sunday, xx were baptized in Jesus Name." Being able to declare the number being saved gives another good reason to stand tall.
But, if we dared to take a tally of each convert after 6, 12, 24 and 36 months few (and too often NONE) remain. The “ostrich” has struck again.
Job 39 talks about the ostrich’s strengths and weaknesses. Is my church an “ostrich church.”
New Convert Needs
New converts need care. A church needs to nurture its newcomers. The way a church goes about this reflects the “mothering style” of the church itself. Let me ask some thought-provoking questions:
- What happens to a person who is baptized this Sunday?
- Is there a special “diet” for spiritual infants? Babies of all species, including spiritual infants need a different diet than adults.
- Who gets the most attention – the baby saint or another who was born-again 40 years ago? Which gets the most attention in the natural – a newborn or a 40-year-old?
- Does the church have anything resembling a spiritual nursery?
These questions can make us fidget. We need not fidget. You can establish a sustainable plan that helps care for your converts. Not only can you! You must! Disciples, not converts are the work-product of the church's efforts.
If we don’t have such an effort to care for spiritual newborns are we any better than the ostrich?
I’m seriously interested in helping grow the kingdom of God and will serve you as I can. I've written multiple books and resources on disciple-making. Whether you purchase my material or not is inconsequential to this conversation. I'll guide, give input, tell you things we tried that did not work all at no cost. Email me: Carltoncoonsr@gmail.com gets my attention.
Develop your own strategy
Develop your own class material
purchase my content or someone else’s
Just do something to keep those you win. In regard to the care of her young, God said the ostrich had been deprived of wisdom. I don't want to be similarly indicted.
Disciple-making has been part of my life for over 30 years. We constantly change, experiment and improve.
If you are interested in my “stuff” regarding disciple-making, there are several options.
The Disciple-makers Training Course is a unique “one of a kind” online course. There are over 30 videos, along with supporting documents. My son and I are available to help anywhere along the journey. Lane is a church planter, so his input comes from that vantage point. My own vantage is now from a more mature church. For those who are part of my email list I’m making a discount coupon available for the Disciple-makers Training Course. At checkout, insert this code: HTYYCBJYE57Y This reduces your cost by $99. In essence, the course is then 2/3 off the usual price.
Discipleship in a Box is a second option. This introductory packet includes the teacher and student version of Take Root and Bear Fruit, which we teach in convert classes; my books, The How and Why of New Convert Care, You Wouldn’t Want an Ostrich for Your Mama, Ten – The First Ten Days of New Life; Personal Devotion (Keep It Simple Saints) and Fitly Framed, as an e-book. The latter is our third class for converts. It helps the newcomer find their place in ministry. As a bulk sale, Discipleship in a Box is discounted by over 25%. These resources normally sell for $133.92. Just now, only $83.80. I pay the shipping and satisfaction is guaranteed.
I'm interested in what is working for you. Particularly, how are you using social media, online classes, zoom, etc. to retain converts. Second, what are you doing to connect the converts socially to your group. Please put your notes below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you get my stuff and it does not benefit you get a full refund. No questions asked. More important than using my material do something. Your babies depend on it! Don’t be an ostrich church.