Do you have a blueprint for Discipleship?
I love to build. From weekend projects to major renovations, there’s something special about sawdust mixed with sweat. Looking back, my journey in DIY began with a small Craftsman toolbox when I turned 10. At first, I wasn’t impressed. Growing up, my friends opened video games while I got a crescent wrench or crowbar for Christmas. What’s a kid supposed to do with needle nose pliers and stainless-steel vise grips? For twenty years, my parents gave me tools every Christmas and birthday. It wasn’t long before I needed two hands to lift my toolbox.
Today, my garage is filled with hand tools and power tools. My prized possession is an oversized Craftsman Professional toolbox. You can’t miss it. It has wheels and chrome drawers with ball bearings. It’s twice the size of our TV! The reason we have a cat is because a mouse tried to make a nest in the corner of my toolbox. Nope. That’s not going to happen.
Deep inside us, we’re made to be builders because we reflect the Master Builder. Like Him, we’re called to build something strong and beautiful.
From designing worship services, to crafting sermons or building into ministry leaders, construction runs through our blood. Deep inside us, we’re made to be builders because we reflect the Master Builder. Like Him, we’re called to build something strong and beautiful. Something living and eternal. Something that matters and will make a difference.
Made in the image of the Master Builder
The first words recorded in Scripture display God as the Creator who laid the foundation of the world and commanded the universe into existence. There isn’t a star in the sky or square inch on the planet that God did not make. He is the architect who planned, designed and built everything out of nothing.
When God created mankind, Adam was formed from the ground in the same way a potter molds clay with His hands. Then God took a rib from Adam to “make” Eve. In the original language, the word make is equivalent to the English word build. This means God built woman from man.
If God is a builder, it’s not a coincidence that Jesus was born to a carpenter.
God is the Master Builder over creation and everything good. Building is in the very nature of God.
If God is a builder, it’s not a coincidence that Jesus was born to a carpenter. From the little we know about Joseph; we know he had a reputation for being a carpenter along the dusty roads of Galilee as he raised his family in town of Nazareth. He, too, was a master builder.
Unlike His first building project, which took six days, Jesus spent most of His life as a carpenter. I imagine, Jesus worked in the family business as soon as He could pick up a broom. By the end of His twenties, Jesus probably had calloused hands and a strong back from pounding nails, cutting boards and laying block.
For three years, Jesus built into the lives of twelve disciples. He ministered to crowds and repaired broken men and women.
Around the age of thirty, Jesus changed careers. Instead of carpentry, Jesus worked on people. For three years, Jesus built into the lives of twelve disciples.
Jesus envisioned people who carry on His ministry to the ends of the earth. To join this crew, you don’t need to know how to pour concrete...We’re called to make disciples.
He ministered to crowds and repaired broken men and women. Jesus restored lives that were crumbling and falling apart.
Near the end of His life, Jesus told His disciples that He would build His church. When Jesus made this promise, He wasn’t talking about a brick building with four walls and a slanted roof. Jesus envisioned people who carry on His ministry to the ends of the earth.
To join this crew, you don’t need to know how to pour concrete, frame a wall or install a door. Like Jesus, you are called to build into people. We’re called to make disciples.
Good tools are vital, but nothing replaces a blueprint.
Like the oversized toolbox in my garage, there’s no shortage of discipleship tools. In fact, I’m guessing you can reach into your ministry toolbox and pick from dozens of tools that will help you design a worship service, craft a sermon or build into the ministry leaders around you.
It’s true, the right tool makes all the difference. But having an abundance of tools isn’t the issue. The better question is this—Do you have a blueprint?
Like a giant toolbox on wheels, a blueprint is where you organize and store your best tools...If you don’t have a blueprint of your own, you’re welcome to use mine.
A good builder doesn’t wing it. He or she follows a blueprint. Blueprints provide clarity on the jobsite. They bring alignment by keeping everyone on the same page. They show what’s next and point to which tasks need to be completed. They bring focus to the resources that are required for the job.
If you’re thinking a blueprint is a pile of papers rolled up with a thick rubber band, think again.
Like a giant toolbox on wheels, a blueprint is where you organize and store your best tools. This is where your vision for ministry is accessible, agile and transferable. As a one-source document, a blueprint needs clear instructions to help you execute your discipleship goals.
My blueprint is the most important tool I have.
Do you have a blueprint for discipleship? Do you have a detailed plan of action? Do you have a high-level picture of what you are building with the steps to build it?
If you don’t have a blueprint of your own, you’re welcome to use mine. This is a blueprint I designed for small groups. Copy it, tweak it, make it better—that’s what builders do.