I was discipled by a quiet, godly, simple man named Melvin. Melvin didn't preach to me with words or teach me in a classroom setting. He discipled me, although I don't recall him using the word disciple.
I watched as he never spoke ill of anyone, even when he had reason to. I watched as he gave grace to struggling families who lived in his apartment building, and as he often refused to collect rent payments from them. I followed in his footsteps to church on Sunday morning, Sunday evening, and Wednesday night. I watched him beam with pleasure when I sang my first solo at church when I was eight years old.
I was also discipled by a bubbly, gregarious, loving woman named Margaret.
I knew she loved the Lord's Day because she took most of Saturday to prepare for it. Her dining room became a beauty salon for little old ladies from the congregation. They would come to her house on Saturday morning to have their hair done for free, so they could look their best for Sunday school and worship. She would spend Saturday cooking and baking, praying that visitors would come to church so she could invite them home for lunch. Then she might have an opportunity to tell them about what Jesus had done for her.
She discipled me in all of this. Every day, I also watched her underline verse s in her big black Bible.
I never went to a discipleship class with Melvin or Margaret. I grew up in their home. They were my mother and father.
I grew in the faith, because I shared life with them. I spent time with them. They walked with me through my struggles, victories, tears, and smiles. They were genuine Christians. I was raised in the incubator of their home and church home. I knelt with them in prayer by my bedside and at the altars of the church. They made sure that I was engaged in all the practices of the church. They happily took me to Sunday School, Bible quizzing, youth group activities, Christmas caroling, revival services, summer camps, and camp meetings. They showed me the value of works of service to the needy in our community. They signed me up to sing in Sunday night singspiration services (the church was the first to have
open mic night and karaoke).
After they introduced me to Jesus, Melvin and Margaret led me to the baptismal pool and the Communion table.
I was discipled by two people who didn't even know they were discipling me. At least, they probably wouldn't have called it discipling. They were just so in love with their child that they couldn't help but share the best part of their lives with him.
They gave me Jesus.