A Wise Discipleship Plan: Pupa to Chrysalis to Imago

“I think one of the greatest challenges is also one of the greatest joys, and that is seeing people grow in their faith…. And the question hangs in my mind constantly: am I doing it well?”

—Ronnie Floyd, Pastor, Cross Church in NW Arkansas

When God created humans, He made us in His image—what theologians call the Imago Dei (Gen. 1:26-27). And ever since the Fall, God shows in Scripture that His agenda for the human race is to transform us again into the image of His Son ( Rom. 8:29; Galatians 4:19Philippians 3:20-21Romans 12:2). Spiritual transformation leads to spiritual maturity. So how do we get there?

Remember your middle school science class? When teachers want to talk about metamorphosis—the transformation of a life from one state into another state— they talk about caterpillars and butterflies. Biologists call the pre-transformed insect a pupa. It’s where we get the word we normally associate with a kid in a classroom (or an adult in a small group!): pupil. What happens to that pupa? It goes into a chrysalis in order to complete the process of transformation. Don’t miss this definition of a chrysalis:

“figurative of a safe and secure environment in which transformation can take place”

Isn’t that a beautiful definition of a small group? Wouldn’t it be great if we thought of every Sunday school class on our campus, and every small group in our community, as a “safe and secure environment in which transformation can take place?”

When the insect emerges from the chrysalis, it is as a mature, perfectly formed butterfly. Now, as a minister who is passionately convinced that God desires to see us conformed to the image of His Son, I was blown away when I first heard the scientific term for an adult insect that has undergone transformation. Do you know what is? Wait for it…

It’s “imago.” Look it up.

So for church leaders, the question is, how do we bring the people in  our church from being “pupils” to being “imagos?” We need a plan.

The new Bible Studies For Life makes three promises to church leaders. The third is that it is a small group Bible study designed with a plan to Disciple People With WisdomToday, May 8, join us for a free webcast from 12:00-12:30 Central time. You will hear from influential church leaders Pete WilsonRon EdmondsonRonnie Floyd, and Eric Geiger who are helping to shape the Bible Studies For Life curriculum. Tune in as they share about how this exciting small group resource will help churches disciple people with wisdom, moving them through the process of spiritual transformation into spiritual maturity.

Sign up for the webcast by clicking here, and we’ll see you Wednesday!

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