In his thought-provoking sermon “Prepare – Investing in a Few,” Pastor Neil Silverberg provides a deep dive into the concept of discipleship within the modern Church. Drawing upon the themes from an annual prayer retreat, Neil articulates three pivotal directives: encounter, jubilee, and prepare. This sermon uniquely focuses on the concept of preparation, likening the Church’s role to that of John the Baptist, heralding the way for Christ’s return.
Neil introduces us to the inspirational story of Gordon, a man whose commitment to discipleship led to a far-reaching impact on the faith community. Gordon’s story exemplifies the sermon’s core message: the exponential influence achieved by investing deeply in a few individuals who, in turn, mentor others, echoing the approach of Jesus himself. This narrative forms the backbone of Neil’s call to action, emphasizing the importance of seizing everyday opportunities to mentor and cultivate a culture of discipleship.
The sermon then moves to discuss the significance of authentic relationships in the process of making disciples. Neil offers guidance on how to become an effective disciple-maker, focusing on nurturing relationships that reflect the teachings of Christ. He urges the audience to introspect on their role in raising a generation dedicated to discipleship, with a reach extending beyond the church’s walls. Neil’s message resonates with a sense of urgency and purpose. He encourages believers to actively engage in nurturing future disciples, thereby ensuring the Church’s robustness and longevity. The sermon emphasizes that through Jesus’ teachings and personal connections, we can significantly multiply devoted disciple-makers, enhancing the kingdom’s growth not just quantitatively, but qualitatively.
The sermon also delves into the practical aspects of discipleship. Neil offers insights on identifying potential disciples within our own circles and promotes the concept of inviting individuals into our lives for meaningful engagement. He discusses the importance of teaching others how to follow Jesus within the context of loving, accountable relationships. This approach, Neil suggests, is crucial for the effective transmission and internalization of Christ’s teachings.
In conclusion, Neil’s sermon serves as a catalyst for reflection on the essential role of authentic relationships in disciple-making. It offers a roadmap for those eager to become effective disciple-makers, reminding us that the growth of God’s kingdom is not just about adding followers but about multiplying those committed to Christ’s cause. Through this sermon, Neil Silverberg challenges us to embrace the art of discipleship, to become not just followers but active multipliers of faith. This, he asserts, is the path to a transformative and thriving future for the Church.