OPERATION: SOLID LIVES (OSL) is a highly effective and proven system of discipleship that has been written, tested and refined— time and again—for over 20 years, to both maximize its ability to impact an individual and to accommodate masses of genuinely hungry believers. Virtually anyone with a good attitude and a willing heart can participate in and graduate from OSL, including those with limitations or disabilities.
Most people do not realize that though God’s purpose for us is an intimate relationship with Him, the process He uses is discipleship. Discipleship is—without question—God’s plan for each and every person. Consider this well-known Scripture and its emphasis on discipleship: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you ….” Matthew 28:19–20 Notice that this command is both to you and about you. We are commanded both to become disciples and to disciple others. So, what is discipleship?
Jesus said in John 8:31–32, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Discipleship is not merely saying a prayer to receive Jesus and then attending church occasionally. The root word for discipleship is discipline. Discipline is what separates the men from the boys, the committed believer from the casual Christian and the overcomer from the under-achiever. The primary difference between a weekend athlete and an Olympic athlete is discipline... and the result of dedicated discipline and training is “gold.” The word “disciple” means “a disciplined follower of.” Thus, a disciple of Jesus is “a disciplined follower of Jesus,” a person who is disciplined to live, talk and be… like Jesus. Jesus said, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples…” The word “abide” means, “to continue, to stick with, to not quit or change from.” In other words, to hear what Jesus says, then obey Him for the rest your life. That takes discipline!
Sadly, many people who call themselves Christians hear the Word of God, but they do not obey it. They misunderstand the gospel which calls us to repent and follow Jesus. James 1:22 says, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” Discipleship guards us from self-deception and facilitates God’s ultimate purpose in our lives. In Luke 6:46–49, Jesus addresses the “hearers only” with a pointed question that cuts right to the heart of the issue… lordship! He then outlines what will be the respective results of the two responses from those who hear His Word.
Luke 6:46–49 says, “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say? Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them, I will show you whom he is like: He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock. But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great.” In this passage, Jesus gives us three simple steps to become solid and unshakable disciples: Come to Jesus, Hear His sayings, and Do them. This is not a one-time event, but a way of living. He didn’t say, “Whoever did come to Me…”, He said, “Whoever comes…”, meaning whoever “does” come to Me. This new lifestyle of repeatedly coming to Jesus for instructions, then denying ourselves and our own conflicting desires to serve His purposes, is both foreign and difficult to all of humanity. Yet giving place to His ways and plans for our lives is the very process whereby we find our life… in Him. Therefore, the role of OPERATION: SOLID LIVES is simply to help you come to Jesus, hear His sayings and do them—hopefully— for the rest of your life! If it were easily accomplished without help, there would have been no need for Jesus to say, “Follow Me,” to His disciples. He could have merely given them clear instructions and sent them into the world to fulfill their respective ministry callings. But interactive discipleship adds necessary ingredients to the instructions—such as encouragement and accountability—thus supplying both the strength and the incentive needed to change.
So what will your life look like when you become a disciplined follower of Jesus? It will look like Jesus’ life. Jesus said in John 14:12, “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.” That means that when we are properly discipled, we will believe; and when we believe, we will do the works of Jesus and even greater works! This has been God’s plan all along—disciples become disciplers and ministers to others on this earth with the same power and authority that Jesus used.