Discipleship is the process of someone becoming a sold-out follower of Jesus. While the church acknowledges that this is a matter of character development, the keys to the process are often limited to prayer and Bible study. Churches are discovering that leading someone to faith in Jesus is now much more complicated than praying with someone and leading him or her through a six-week “New Believer” class.
In reality, many of these people are wounded, struggling with baggage they’re bringing from their previous life experiences. Increasingly, our society is built of such individuals. They have been wounded in relationships, and now they’re looking for new relationships that will help them recover from these wounds.
Unfortunately, most people in the church still do not understand the basics for helping people find freedom from bondages and healing for deep emotional wounds. While there is a growing understanding of counselling and support-and-recovery group ministry, Christian leaders still tend to relegate these individuals to the category of “Extra Grace Required,” and shuffle them off to someone else’s care. Or, equally destructive, they miss the opportunity to correctly apply God’s word of truth to the everyday wounds we all experience. Christian counselling, inner healing and deliverance ministries still struggle to be acknowledged as a valid and important part of the body of Christ. In many cases these ministries are disconnected from the body of Christ. Because of this, the church continues to be ineffective in discipling wounded people.