Make Time, Make Disciples!

Chad Merrell - Lead Pastor | North Rock Hill Church - Rock Hill, SC

Have you ever heard yourself say that 4-letter WORD?  Maybe you said it with disgust, frustration, or disappointment. I find however that we often say it with a sense of pride. Someone asks, “How are you?, and we quickly reply: “busy”.

I’ve noticed that in recent years, the pat reply of “fine” has been replaced. These days it seems that we wear “busy” as a badge of honor, a sort of declaration of our value in the world and our impact on it. But what if it’s not? What if the health of our schedule is actually catalytic in ensuring we get to give time to the things that are most important?

When it comes to relational discipleship, we need to acknowledge that relationship and discipleship require the investment of time. Much has been written in recent years about time management, energy awareness, and healthy schedules (some helpful links below), but before we talk about “how” to create and maintain a healthy schedule, let’s look at “why” it matters so much in the context of discipleship. Here are 3 truths about how “busy” may be sabotaging your life as a disciple/disciple maker:

Truth #1 – We MAKE time for what is truly important to us

I’ve noticed this to be true in my life, I never run out of time to do what I truly think is important. At the expense of sleep or something else, I WILL find the time to duck hunt, to bow hunt, to watch LSU football or travel somewhere with my wife. It is amazing how quickly I can free myself up to do what I truly want to do. I think we are all like this. Our finances show that we will find the money and the time to do what we want (no matter the price of gas or the demands of our calendar). If a look at the reality of our schedule shows that relationships and discipleship are the things that get bumped, then maybe it is time to pause, and admit to the Lord that we have not prioritized HiS agenda over our own.

We love to convince ourselves that others have more time, but God has given us all the same 24 hours, and entrusted us the responsibility of deciding how we will use it.

Truth #2 – We will UNDER-deliver, 100% of the time, when we OVER-commit.

This is a humbling truth, that shows up in ways we often miss or misdiagnose. Tardiness, fatigue, constant need to reschedule, a backlog of unanswered messages etc can all serve as “check engine lights” for us that busyness may be inhibiting our effectiveness as disciple makers. We will find that Jesus great command to us becomes lacking in our schedule as we either miss opportunities altogether or show up less than our best through late arrivals, distraction and fatigue. Maybe a point of honesty is to simply confess to God our self-reliance and self-importance has led to over scheduled and under delivering.

Truth #3 – Our willingness to be interrupted is key in Relational Discipleship

The best disciple makers i know are the people who intentionally create margin in their lives for interruptions. They understand that relationship requires availability and discipleship happens in relationship. When we are scheduled to the limit, we simply don’t leave the margin of time or energy for those unplanned moments to listen or celebrate or share burdens. Discipleship often happens in those moments where we just know who to call, who can be interrupted

Do any of these truths serve to challenge an excuse in how you view your schedule? Below are some links that can help give further insights and some practical handles to grown keeping a healthy schedule that can be catalytic instead of limiting for the things that truly matter.

Make time! Make Disciples!


Chad Merrell
Lead Pastor
North Rock Hill Church
Rock Hill, SC


Helpful links:





  • Atomic Habits – James Clear
  • The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry – John Mark Comer
  • Take Back Your TimeChristy Wright

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