Last year I attended an IF:Local, but this year I watched the live stream from my bedroom. I thought it wouldn’t be as dynamic this year & that I wouldn’t hear God’s promoting as clearly because I was by myself. Alone. At home. Removed from the “vibe” or the gathering of many. But praise Jesus that He meets us exactly where we are despite being surrounded by others or alone with our thoughts, because I did hear Him. Loud & clear.
The first speaker was IF’s founder Jennie Allen. She came out the gate swinging & brought into light the idea that in order to have impact we have to have numbers: likes, shares, followers, comments, etc, & that we have to be on a bigger stage. She brought into Godly light all these things that modern-day culture & social media have told us are the only pathways to success.
However, as believers & disciples, we are not shaped by modern-day culture. No! We are shaped by Jesus-day culture. In the Gospels, we get to see that throughout Jesus’ ministry, He went small. He very often deals with, heals, discusses, ministers, & makes disciples one at a time or in small settings. Yes, there were those grand & amazing moments, like feeding people with loaves & fish or turning water into wine, but for the most part His ministry was small. He is a one-on-one type of guy. He treasured those He spent time with & loved on them, giving them His attention.
One of Jennie’s quotes that hit me hard was toward the end of her message, when she said, “Don’t spend your years building platforms instead of disciples.” How many of us are more concerned with paychecks, sales, bookings, and clients than we are with having an impact on the one or two people that tell us, “Hey, I really needed to hear that.” How many of us so preoccupied with more orders, more gigs, more audience members, or more readers that we miss the one woman at your last party that said she desperately just needed some girl time & that is why she attended? Do you look those people in the eye as only a potential sale, or do you see the opportunity you have been given to possibly shape a believer?
As disciples of Christ, we have been charged with the great commission: “Go & make disciples of all nations…” (Matthew 28:19) As we progress through our lives, building a business, climbing the ladder, or raising children, we carry the same call Jesus’ disciples did: go and make disciples. When we look at our daily lives not just as minutia or getting through to bedtime but instead look at life as a series of one-on-one opportunities to build disciples, we are fulfilling our marching orders. One-on-one, one at a time. Just like Jesus.