Noel comes home, to his extended family here. And everything he shares blows our mind! I believe it will do the same to yours. Again, the way we blog on how we make disciples is go through by detailed account of what is really actually happened. So, here is a new one!
For a couple of days we, I, Jomie and Albert, we still could not finished the dressing cabinet that we’re making for the Lambs here. I thought of buying a plastic drawers but my wife Lisa suggested that since we have unused plywoods why not make one instead. We did, so one day Noel came. I will go through what we’re discussing while we do the carpentry and we let Noel paint the other box. We made two, but one is still on the process of building it.
“How was your making disciples journey Noel?” I ask after saying “How are you’s?” and how was your family and school stuff. “Have you made any disciples yet except Cherry Mae, since Jomie made you a disciple 6 months ago? ”
“I did Kuya,” he replied, “but none wanted to be baptize.”
“How come? Did they believe in you?”
“Yeah, but…somehow I could not do it” was his honest answer.
“Well, your classmates are just same age as you right? You are 14 years old, so probably they are in that range. What grade are you in?”
“Third year high school Kuya”
“Yap, at that age most of them are afraid to be baptize, especially they have been baptized already as Roman Catholics. Have you encountered one of them make reason like that?”
“And what did you tell them?”
“I told them that the Bible says, ‘Believe and be baptized’ so there is a need to baptize them again because when they’re just a baby you don’t know what to believe.”
“Where did you learn that Noel?” I ask him these questions because he hardly visit us, his extended family, he lives next town from where I live. And Jomie, who made him a disciple, [who suppose to father him closely – yes, as young as anyone is can start fathering his younger generation – like Jomie who is 21 years old can treat Noel who is 14 as his younger brother in the Lord,] hardly ‘visited’ him [‘visitation’ is a religious term] or do a ‘follow up’ on him [another religious doings – do you maintain your brother through a follow up? Follow up of what? In being a brother?] I know this because Jomie stayed here in my house with Albert. So I know when they get out of the house and get in and where they’re going.
“I read it in the Bible Kuya,” was Noel’s reply of my question where did he learns these things?
“So, you have read your Bible then?”
“Yes, I read it in my school during break times.”
“That means, everyday from Monday to Friday you read your Bible?”
“Mostly” he said.
I moaned, stopping for awhile, thinking hard. Jomie and Albert was in our conversation also commenting like, “Wow, is this Jomie’s fruit?” was Albert’s comment to the conversation.
“Then what happened?”
Now, his next story blows our mind.
“Since they don’t want to be baptize by water, I just baptize them with fire!”
“What?!!!” Three of us was stopped of what we’re doing for awhile while he just keep on painting the box.
“What do you mean Noel?” I inquire politely.
“Well, I read it in the Bible that, ‘I baptized you with water but Jesus will baptize you with fire.’ And so I did.” He explained.
“How did you do that then?”
“And then? Did something happened?”
“I just prayed for them that Jesus will baptized them with fire” he answered back.
Obviously, nothing happened as he didn’t say anything except his obedience to what he has been reading. This is how we make disciples: Believing, Repenting, Baptizing with water, Receiving the Holy Spirit, and Accepting him into your family. Whenever we make disciples we normally go through all of these except ‘Receiving the Holy Spirit’ we just pray after baptism with water. Either something happens or not we don’t matter. We understand that this is Jesus job to baptizes them with fire. I have the experience when I was a traditional pastor, preaching a sermon on the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and the agony of trying to force it, but from the time that we started this journey of making disciples I refuses even to ‘try to do it.’
Except on t his one occasion, one night a brother named Peter came, this happens just a month ago but I forgot to blog this important happenings. We talk with Peter about the Holy Spirit and we came to discuss about the Baptism of it. Then realizing that we’re just babbling, “Why not ask Jesus to baptize you?” I suggested. Then without an invitation of Jomie and Albert just joined in from the time we prayed. “Well, OK.” I just nod my head knowing nothing what will happen. I speak in a tongue, easier for me as I have been baptized after a year when I was saved [I am 20 years now in the Lord]. But suddenly, Peter also speak in a tongue, and Jomie and Albert. I know Jomie and Albert hear me speaks sometime when we pray, but I didn’t preach at them about it. One reason is since this is something that Jesus would do why not wait on Him when He will do it?
I was amazed that night, and everyone also. And we had good laughs continuing our fellowship.
Back to Noel’s stories…
It brings us, Jomie and Albert, to our amazement as Noel spake these things. Imagine, as young as he is, none doing the “visitation” and the “follow up’s” but talking about these things to him that surrounds him at school? What do you think is happening to him?
“This must be the Holy Spirit in you, Noel.” I affirm. “I know Jomie just seen you twice. Once when he baptizes you here, and once when you came with other new disciples like Louie Dan and Jillian and we have dinner together with some barbecue’s and during the cooking you guys gather together and you get prayed for everybody because you had a fever. But after than, I didn’t see you no more with Jomie. So, who would we think is doing that to you?”
Albert and Jomie nod their heads knowing that what we witness is a facts.
TALKING ABOUT “CHURCH”
“So,” I continued interviewing, “how about church? Hadn’t they ask, ‘Where do we go to worship?'”
“Anywhere we can worship…” he replied.
I was really thinking this time that what he means is ‘we can go to any church we want’ co’z we’re saying here that ‘we don’t gather for ‘doing church’ because we are the church, and so we allow anyone to go to any church with the purpose of ‘making your friends disciples of Jesus’ because somehow people have a belief system and in order for us to get them is too get in to where they can be found.’ And so you have become a disciple of Jesus in the Roman Catholic Church, or a disciple of Jesus in the Mormon Church, or a disciple of Jesus in the Muslim Community. But know that you have a family, your extended family which is us. So, here goes my assumption. But he continued…
“…because we are the church. Church is where the Spirit of God lives, in us. So, we can worship anywhere.” Noel just answered my inquiries just that. He keeps on painting the box, bowing heads fill in every corner of white paint, just that without thinking hard.
Whenever a new disciple either made by me or one of us I always do some inquiry about their journey of making disciples. And my way of finding out if truly the Holy Spirit is our DISCIPLER, we don’t intervene by doing ‘visitations’ and ‘follow ups.’ Our stand is ‘BEING CHURCH TOGETHER AS FAMILY,’ and because it’s family, what kind of father ‘in the Lord’ I am if I don’t see you? And what kind of son ‘in the Lord’ you are if you don’t see me? So we assume that those whom we made disciples shall see us from time to time. We don’t do ‘weekly meetings’ and ‘Bible Study Programs’ to maintain our membership in the family. It’s ridiculous to think that way! You do ‘Bible Study’ with your brother to maintain him as your brother? Absurd.
How do we secure being family then? We ‘INTENTIONALLY’ tell them that they are! “My son Timothy,..” “I have become your father…” “My dear Children, I write these things to you…” These are intentional statements. It has a purpose of making you a family. That is it’s intention.
Think about it, Noel is just 14 years old, made disciple by Jomie last “May 11” this year, as Noel witness and that date is hard to forget because that is Election Day in our country. I got his story of how Jomie made him a disciple and Jomie has his story as well. We are like the two gospels who documented the same story, LOL…..
And amazingly, what important t note is that Jomie hasn’t done some ‘meeting’ with him in a constant basis. As I said, or Jomie said, “It’s only two or three times right? For six months!”
So sorry, Noel is always absent in “Our Discipleship Class 101!”
“Who taught you this Noel?” I continue.
“Kuya Jomie” he answered. “Kuya” is a term used here as ‘older brother.’
“Is this true Jomie?” I face Jomie.
“I can’t remember, maybe” was his reply.
“I remember,” Noel said, “when you make me a disciple you mention it later.”
“I see” Jomie nod his head.
Silence broke and we continue in our carpentry. I was reminded about Noel’s reading his Bible in his classroom. So, i ask again,…
“Tell me about what you’re doing in the classroom during break times.” Now, this is shocking also and much more blows my mind as I have some traditional background. Unlike Jomie and Albert are freshly baked lambs in the hot oven.
Noel answered me back, “We read together and discuss it together.”
“Whow! Wait a minute, what?!!!” Jomie and Albert stares at me thinking, “What is that to Molong?”
“When I read my Bible, my classmates ask questions of what I am doing and they ask me to explain what I have read. But I told them that that is not fair. Why not each one of us read the same story then we discuss together.”
“Could you give us an example, like what?”
“The Parable of the Sower. After each one reads we ask the question: Who is the sower? What is the seed? What kinds of grounds does the seed fall? What kind of people are they? Etc…”
Wow, very simple, literal and practical!
“Does your classmates have Bibles then?” I inquire.
“Nope, we only have one Bible, mine. But after I read, then one read and others and so on…”
“How many of you in the classroom then?”
“Did all of them read it?”
“Nope, sometimes ten, fifteen, twenty…but it’s almost all because I do them almost everyday with my classmates.”
“You have no idea what you are doing Noel,” I affirm with joy. “Has anyone taught you to do this? Or have you heard about a “Bible Study?”
“Nope. None told me. I just did it.”
“Better not to know about a ‘Bible Study Program” Noel.
“Why?” he ask.
“It will only ruin you!”
Who taught Noel about simple church? None.
But what is he doing then at school? It’s simple church. Either way, call it what you want. But you know what I mean right? How in the world did he get these ideas?!!!
I am in awe, are you?
By the way, this is how we do ‘Relational Discipleship,’ it’s doing things together.
It’s obvious that Noel needs more Bibles for his classmates. You can click DONATE button of paypal and ‘For Bibles’ is your help.