Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Book Review: Making Disciples~Applying Truth In Daily Living by Carla Maclachlan

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20

Praise for Making Disciples

Making Disciples is both challenging and life-changing. My awareness of the power of Scripture to influence daily life has greatly increased. I now live life with a heavenly, rather than worldly, perspective. - J. Elfrink

God is using Making Disciples to transform my life! When I began to embrace discipleship and disciple making, my walk with Christ deepened. I better understand now that God is working in the moments of my days to bring Himself glory. - B. Williams
An excellent book filled with the truths
of God and a challenge to grow in
those truths on a daily basis.

After experiencing Making Disciples, I sense the urgency to know and teach God's Word. I've learned to listen beyond the normal conversations to seek God's opportunity. - B. Porter

Publishers Description

Jesus tells His followers to “go and make disciples”. You understand what it looks like to "go" (consider all the places you’ve been in the past few days.) But what does it look like to make disciples? Are you prepared to invest in the lives of others? 
Making Disciples is a practical book that will help you:
  • Understand God’s purpose for disciple-making 
  • Recognize and prepare for evangelistic opportunities 
  • Practically apply biblical truth in daily living 
  • Communicate and demonstrate living by faith 
  • Engage others in formal and informal discipleship

My Personal Review

Making Disciples creates a path leading straight to the the thrown of grace where you find reflection, repentance, reconciliation and relationship! Making Disciples~Applying Truth In Daily Living by Carla Maclachlan is a beautiful call to apply the truths of the Bible directly to our lives and to cultivate a greater awareness and responsiveness to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

This book challenges the reader to take a deeper look at the principles of becoming a disciple of Christ, and further still, abiding with Christ and thereby communicating this love with others as we transform into His likeness day by day. The author defines a disciple of Jesus as “someone who chooses to believe in, learn from, and follow Him. Discipleship is a process by which believers are taught biblical principles and how to apply them in practical ways.” Maclachlan exhorts the reader to allow the Holy Spirit to speak into our individual circumstances and make changes as He directs. By increasing our sensitivity and opening our hearts to the will of God, we will experience the abundant life that He has for us.

The need to study God’s word and use it as our “discipleship instruction manual” is emphasized frequently within the chapters of Making Disciples. With scripture references on nearly every page, the author earnestly expresses that without the “infallible Word of God”, we will be ill equipped and unprepared to handle the daily divine appointments that the Lord has designed for each one of us. I enjoyed the analogy Maclachlan gives, as it relates to this subject, when she explains that just as nursing education is to be applied at a later date to help patients with their physical needs, we also should “anticipate using what God is teaching us to enhance the spiritual well-being of others.” Great thought!

The point that it is God’s ultimate goal for us to “reproduce His truth in the lives of others” is clearly conveyed throughout the writing. It is asserted that “receiving the gospel is merely the starting point of salvation and discipleship, not the end goal.” Because it is our aim to share the truth of Christ with those who don’t know Him, it is important for us to have many tools in our tool belt so that we can be messengers of the gospel in it’s entirety. Found within the pages is a very in-depth section covering the details of introducing an individual to Christ and presenting the full plan of redemption for their life.

The idea that spiritual growth is the catalyst to becoming an effective disciple of Christ is given a great deal of attention. This growth will only happen when we allow the Holy Spirit to train us. We must also consider forming mentoring “relationships that are intentional and purposeful in teaching, guiding, and training others to walk daily by faith in the truth of our Lord Jesus Christ.” This mentoring process will help to promote spiritual maturity in others as well as in ourselves. The author even provides a helpful outline for beginning a mentoring connection. She is careful to explain that because of the uniquely created individuals that God places in our lives, we need to be acutely in tune with the leading of His Spirit and every discipleship opportunity that the Lord presents to us, adjusting our plans accordingly.

The subjects of surrender, sanctification, and faith are discussed at length. These daily decisions of obedience are paramount to moving forward in an abundant life with Christ; they are not a one time event, but rather a moment by moment choice to relinquish your right to self will and give that over to the will of God. Galatians 2:20 is used as a reference to this conclusion.

The final chapters discuss issues of our identity in Christ, the consequences of sin, learning from the past, adversity and more. I especially enjoyed the author’s sensitive approach to the matter of facing difficulties when it is not a direct result to personal sin. The point that our perspective will change, but perhaps not our circumstances, when we apply the truths of God in the trials of life is something that I have experienced in my own life. The scripture reference given here is John 16:33 where Jesus says, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” Recognizing and accepting God’s enormous purpose in the trials of life will give us spiritual victory over our situation.

Visit Carla at www.carlamaclachlan
My overwhelming impression of Making Disciples is very positive. It is written for a wide audience in that a person who is not familiar with the Bible, Christ, or God’s plan of salvation will read this book and quite possibly be drawn into a saving faith and a consistent scripture intake along with application of His Word. On the opposite side of the pendulum, the plethora of valuable and applicable information on discipleship that is contained within this book will certainly draw the spiritually mature Christian to pursue a more intimate and fruitful walk with Christ as they apply the truths of God on a daily basis through prayer, communion and the mentoring process.

Making Disciples is an excellent book. Unless I completely missed the point, however, it should be read slowly, prayerfully, and with a heart that is open to the voice of the Lord. It is not a book to scurry through and put up on your shelf to check off as “read.” No, in actuality, it should be marked “to be read again”. The rationale for this advice is simply that in a continually changing world, you will always be in a different circumstance. Yes, it might be similar, but NEVER the same and therefore, you will be able to reach for your Bible and this little gem of a book and prayerfully proceed. The Biblical  truths and discipleship process will provide you with just the right direction for the new situations that you most certainly will find yourself in.

Thank you to Bound By Faith Publishers for this paperback review copy of Making Disciples~Applying Truth In Daily Living by Carla Maclachlan. I was not required to give a favorable review, but simply to read the book and give a summary with my personal opinion of it’s content. I also was not required to purchase an E-copy, but I did so because I want to have an easily accessible copy for frequent referencing. I would highly recommend this book to non-Christians and Christians alike. I am confident that your life will certainly be changed by Carla’s passionate love for God and her clear communication of His truths.

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