The Struggle of Discipleship
Colossians 4:12–13 (ESV)
12 Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ Jesus, greets you, always struggling on your behalf in his prayers, that you may stand mature and fully assured in all the will of God.
13 For I bear him witness that he has worked hard for you and for those in Laodicea and in Hierapolis.
1. What is the mission statement of NRBC, both the expanded version and the tag line version? How does the life of Epaphras exemplify our mission statement?
a. What practical steps do you take to remind yourself that you are doing something for the Lord in your attempts at discipleship, especially when you are so tempted to act like a consumer buy the surrounding culture?
b. Are there ways you’ve learned to combine discipleship and leisure or hobbies? Give some examples to the group please.
2. Why is intercessory prayer always such a “struggle.”
a. What are the enemies of discipleship?
b. Which enemy do you sense is the most formidable?
c. Does it help motivate you to pray for those you love and are hoping to disciple if you view them as being stalked by a roaring lion who wants to kill them?
3. What particular gifts do you have to contribute to disciplemaking?
a. Fro this passage, what is the goal of discipleship?
b. How has God consistently used you to help others reach this goal?
c. Give an honest assessment of yourself and your spiritual giftedness for this God-given task.
4. Discipleship takes hard work according to the life of Epaphras.
a. Does hard work intimidate you from giving yourself to this glorious work?
b. Does the idea of eternity help motivate you?
c. In what ways does the truth of the Gospel empower you to be a disciplemaker?
d. How does the example of Christ inform your thoughts about disciplemaking?
e. How can a layman give himself or herself to disciplemaking while still raising a family, working a job, etc.?
5. Please pray as a small group that God would help each of you to give yourself afresh to the blessed work of disciplemaking.