Today, a total of 23,410 Victory group leaders and interns in over 50 locations across the Philippines gathered simultaneously for Discipleship 2020! This conference was the first time our provincial churches—from up north in Ilocos Norte to down south in General Santos—participated in the event at the same time as Victory in Metro Manila.
Since 2017, our discipleship conferences have been about each part of the discipleship journey: Engage, Establish, Equip—and now, Empower. We believe that our discipleship journey can’t end with equipping believers to minister. As followers of Christ, we are empowered to make disciples.
To further reinforce the message of this year’s discipleship conference, Pastor Steve Murrell talked about how Saul (eventually Paul) was immediately empowered to make disciples and preach the gospel. He taught us that we don’t have to wait long before we start leading others to Christ.
When Pastor Steve and Dr. Rice Broocks came here in the Philippines in 1984, they did the same thing to over 150 Filipino youth in the heart of the University Belt. They preached the gospel to them, established biblical foundations in their lives, equipped them to do the work of the ministry, and empowered them to lead. They didn’t wait for years before empowering them to preach the gospel and make disciples. They didn’t look at what they lacked or didn’t know at that time. Instead, they allowed them to grow in strength by empowering them. We plan to continue doing this as a church.
Our recently concluded conference is a great reminder that discipleship is about doing just that: having progress in the right direction, not perfection. Once we learn to empower others in making disciples, we will be amazed at what God can do in and through us and in the lives of the people we empower to lead.
Let us continue to do what we are called to do as a church, and through empowered leaders, see our nation transformed by the gospel!