A few weeks ago the folks at Wayfarer Blog had a poignant post on how big events fall short of making disciples. The post is called Jesus didn’t make conference junkies — he made disciples. It is worth reading. I have read it several times and found it both challenging and affirming.
The post points out the great need we have in student ministry for rhythm between Events and Processing. Rich Atkinson at Wayfarer says “It takes a moment to make a decision for Jesus, yet it takes a whole lifetime to work this decision out.” I agree fully. What I have experienced in my own life has been true to this. In a moment, at a large event, my heart surrendered to Jesus. Since that time I have been working that decision out through processing with other Jesus followers. Along the way I have experienced other big events that spur me on towards Jesus. The rhythm between events and processing is ongoing in my walk with Jesus. Both are needed for me to grow as a disciple.
We also see this in the way Jesus made disciples. Mike Suit, in an earlier post entitled Get Rythm says this, “Ultimately, for all of us in student ministry, our goal should be making disciples. If Jesus only did miracles with His disciples or only spoke to them in front of large crowds, but gave them no chance to unpack and discuss what they saw or what He said, then their relationship with Him would have only had a very little amount of depth to it – and discipleship would not have occurred.” Mike goes onto say that similarly, if Jesus only processed with the disciples through discussion and small group teaching, but never included them in things like the feeding of the 5000, then they would not have grown as disciples.
Both Events and Processing are needed to produce disciples. So in the ministry you lead or are a part of, how are events and processing balanced? How do you or your leaders accomplish both?