CULTURE OF DISCIPLESHIP
To me, discipleship is all about relationships - with God and with others. I love that God didn’t leave us alone to figure things out ourselves. He didn’t create us and just walk away, nor does He want us to go through this life without community. He built us for relationships and to learn from one another. He built us to grow together and pour into each other’s lives.
Jesus poured into His twelve disciples and so many others. Paul poured into Timothy. We find countless examples in the Bible of how the Gospel spread, the church grew and people were grounded firmly in their faith through discipleship.
When looking at the relationships in my life, there have been so many people that have shaped my faith and who I am today, some through formal discipleship but most through simple day-to-day living.
I look at my Grandpa who was devoted to Christ and stood firm on the importance of scripture memorization, reading through the Bible every year and spending hours each day in prayer. As a child, I watched him walk hand-in-hand with Christ and witnessed his true joy and love for others. Watching him taught me the true value of spending time with Jesus.
I look at my parents who grappled with challenges, yet clung to Christ and had a persistent steadfast faith that has been strengthened through the storms and is now stronger than ever. Growing up, I was able to ask them questions and explore God for myself. Their unwavering faith and trust in God helped solidify my own and helped build my foundation.
I look at those I serve with at C3 NYC. The passion, selflessness, encouragement and love that’s all so evident. I see the strength and joy of so many people on fire for Christ. This community has spurred me to boldness in my faith that I haven’t had before. My friendships are now built on encouragement, prayer, sharing life’s praises/struggles, and pointing each other to Christ. In a city that can be so dark, I have found a home that has made it feel so light.
And with this understanding, that we are all shaped by relationships and impacted by those in our lives, it makes me wonder: How much more do we need to break free from our insecurities, laziness and feelings of insignificance, to instead pour into those around us? If simple acts of faith and encouragement impact each of us so much, why do we believe the enemy’s lies that we cannot make a difference? I think of all the people in this city who are lost and chasing after worldly desires, who need God’s love and this community. Each of us can be used to show God’s love to them, even if through simple acts of kindness and daily living. We don’t know the impact or what people need, but God does and He can guide us. And what true joy it is to be able to disciple others through Christ.
— STEPHANIE TEAT