Shepherding a #Mature Group of Disciples on #DisciplesToday

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Shepherding a Mature Group of Disciples

Written by  Erika and Cristian Paduraru: Bucharest, Romania Saturday, 16 January 2010 21:00

Greetings from Romanian disciples of Christ!

Love, power and wisdom from our Lord Jesus and our heavenly Father through the Holy Spirit that bonds us.

My name is Cristian and after I became a disciple of Christ, I remember how every morning I wanted to go and share with my 80+ years old grand mother from God’s word

along with prayer in order to help her enter in the New Covenant with Him! It was challenging at time and still I saw her baptized into Christ just a few months later.

The last two years of her life seemed to be the best years on earth. A twinkle in her eyes was sparking every time when she was listening
from the Bible.

In the beginning of past autumn we (Cristian and Erika) – married disciples with two small children and one to be born soon – gathered all the elderly Romanian disciples in one group – 15 in all. What is our desire for this group of mature disciples? We dream that until we get to Heaven together, their last years of this life will be the best years on earth because they are disciples of Christ, our Lord!

The Bible talk discussion meeting atmosphere is warm and outstanding because each one, has the chance, to share where they are in the relation with God and other people.

What other activities do we have? Discipling group times in the morning and Christian party along with singles in the weekend evenings! As they share their heart it became obvious their role in God’s Kingdom and we can delegate to encourage various goals and plans.

In those Christian parties, we eat together, we share with one another, pray and sing, bottom line we fellowship to build each other up in Christ. Some meetings we have at malls and this helps some of the elderly to get over with their fears about the large and modern places.

Also, having times with mature disciples helps members to get open and fight and repent of their sins. There is a special need for activities in group to replace loneliness with meaningful times .

How the faith of the group members increased? As we started a Bible reading plan. It was inspiring to see them coming with stories and decisions as they rediscover the word of God. They choose reading partners which in most cases we’re the discipling partners also. The unity of His Spirit is kept. This bible reading plan helps some to read for the first time the Old Testament and discover God even deeper. It is great to see how the disciples get passionately fired up about the word of God and it’s like one sheep after another are returning to the Shepherd, their first love.

The group developed a sense of security because God was blessing relationships. One idea that we put in practice is that fast with people is slow and slow with people is fast! Each month the group enjoys an inspiring interactive paper activity. Each member gets a sheet of paper with the group monthly focus and each needs to fill it up. In the first month the focus was about needs evaluation (where they are coming from and what they did so far, in the same time where they want to continue and what kind of expectations they have).

The second month defined the group constitution also known as mission statement. The third month paper discovered the biblical priorities and purposes while each member established personal and group goals to fulfill those purposes. The next paper will be about finding scriptures in both OT and NT on essential subjects that will help us to better study the Bible with other people.

Would you like to know us better? Antonia’s dream is to live in a huge house with a lot of disciples. Zahara is physically challenged with one leg amputated, in constant financial need for medications and in the same time has an encouraging attitude that is a blessing for the group and studies. Marilena is serious about the Bible study and sometimes comes in the meetings with printed Bible subjects. Stefan is widowed and Bible teaching supervisor. Tibi is widowed and has the gift of hospitality. Muscalu family we’re dancers and they are an inspiration as they evangelize in daily situations. Maria about 80 years old and is hospitalized. Liberte is fascinated about the impact that the bible reading is letting on her, when she shares about her quit times she is all shining. Mioara is dedicated to have one another discipling times with each of the sisters. Elena loves to serve needs and to cook. For Angela the fellowship in the group is very refreshing . Stefania is excited to start to sharing her faith and make disciples of Christ. Vali is our latests person that is studying the Bible and wants to become a disciple, so we’re looking forward to see her baptized into Christ. We – Erika and Cristian Paduraru is serving this group like shepherds and we feel loved and respected.

While writing this report, most members of the group shared what they want you to hear through it. Some said that even in spite of age and challenges it is a great joy for them to get a biblical direction and vision ! Others said that they feel loved to have a spiritual leadership.

It’s inspiring to see how a disciple find his role in the Church and how much fulfillment is when they know their place in the Body.

Where you can connect with us and exchange experiences?   www.cristianpaduraru.com  is the place to interact and keep in touch, there you can find pictures and stories updated. We would love your insight, advices, pictures and even audio or videos recordings while sharing your life story you want to leave as a legacy. No matter what country you are, please write us now at this link and let us know what do you think about all this or how we can help?

Erika and Cristian Paduraru

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