I have observed an interesting tension when it comes to disciple making. The tension is between pragmatism and theorism. One leans toward practicality and one is geared toward the philosophy of ministry. One is always looking to do and one is looking to think. Every disciplemaker I know has a leaning one way or the other. But, the truth is that these should coexist together. We need to understand how the theory is lived out practically. Agree? Or do you need to think about it?
One comment on “Are You a Pragmatist when it Come to Discipleship?”
Interestingly, this was exactly the focus of this morning’s post, though I suppose I’m something of a theoretical pragmatist (how’s that for an oxymoron?). I guess what I mean by that is that for me theory needs to have fairly ready practical application or I zone out pretty quickly. 🙂
Anyway, take a look at this and see what you think of it.
My thinking on this question begins here–discipleship is really about two things: relationship and purpose, or perhaps more specifically purpose in relationship. There are many fine strategies and tactics out there, but somehow it always comes back to these two things.
Relationship: The church is relationship. It is the body of Christ, vitally connected.
Purpose: The church grows up into the head–which is Christ.
This gets more practical when we consider its implications. Those who do not have Christ desperately need him–we call this evangelism. Those who have him need him more fully–we call this discipleship.
It is when every relationship is infused with Christ’s purposes that I will truly be a maker of disciples. Everything else–classes, books, meetings, campaigns, etc.–flows back to that central idea.