A large church recently held an outdoor event catering to all things “manly.” They pulled out all the stops, grilled every kind of meat you can think of, and had sponsors like power tool companies and muscle cars on display. Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor would have approved with multiple grunts.
The goal of this monstrous event? Discipleship.
At final count, over 800 men showed up. 800 men engaged in conversation, grinned as hot rods fired up, and rubbed elbows with local Christian radio personalities. The church used this opportunity to invite all within earshot of their microphones to a kick-off discipleship meeting the following week. How many men actually showed up?
Unfortunately, this is a true story, a statistical nightmare. Are we saying it wasn’t worth it for the one man who answered the call? No, but that’s hardly the point of this post.
n. commando [kəˈmaːndəu]:
(a member of) a unit of troops specially trained for tasks requiring special courage and skill.
n. pl. com·man·dos or com·man·does
A small fighting force specially trained for making quick destructive raids against enemy-held areas.
Notice the distinct differences between the singular and plural definitions. One commando is “a member of a unit,” while more than one is considered “A small fighting force.” One commando is “specially trained for tasks requiring special courage and skill,” while more than one is “specially trained for making quick destructive raids against enemy-held areas.” Don’t miss this – every commando is specially trained, indicating more in-depth training than the rest of the unit of troops.
“We are not a group designed to swell the pews of churches. We do not exist to satisfy quotas…” (excerpt from our Manifesto) Why aren’t these our goals? Because these apparently weren’t Jesus’ goals. Though the masses thronged Him, He surrounded Himself with a chosen few, men He would go “commando” with throughout His three-year earthly ministry recorded in the Gospels.
These men, His disciples, were trained to destroy the works of the enemy. They weren’t wined and dined, but were invited to leave everything they knew. Personally invited by the King of Kings. They walked countless miles together. They broke bread together. In short, they did life together.
Commandos don’t just know each other in passing or at an occasional event sponsored by organized religion. They know each other intimately from trials they have faced — together.
Christ left His disciples because it was time. They had been trained — not enough to function as lone warriors, but enough to function as a unit. They, the disciples, were Jesus’ plan to change the world. They still are. WE still are.
If churches, and every Christ follower for that matter, truly understood the power of “going commando,” they would do greater works than even Christ Himself. After all, isn’t that what He said? (John 14:12)