We all know believers who initially progressed well in their faith and then stopped growing, or entered a cycle of spiritual fervor followed by periods of indifference or rebellion.
Restoration and Recovery
One reason for this is unaddressed pain that has produced coping mechanisms. These hinder further emotional and relational development, effectively short-circuiting spiritual growth. Disciple builders must understand this and be able to devise strategies for helping people recover and continue to grow.
Jesus developed mature followers who were also trained to lead His Church. These were the “men who turned the world upside down” (Acts). The contemporary Church needs such leaders. But Christ’s ministry involved more than leadership development, it also included helping people heal from the damages of sin. Both elements, equipping people for strategic leadership and enabling them to recover from emotional and relational damage, must be part of an effective disciple building approach.
Equipping for Growth
People recover best when they are given progressive ministry responsibility, even as they address their sin issues. Such Christians, honest about their struggles but committed to becoming godly, make the best leaders.