Louisiana church's focus on discipleship leads to revival


LIVINGSTON, La. — Colyell Baptist Church was seeing people saved and baptized each year, but their spiritual journeys seemed to stop just beyond the baptis­tery, according to pastor Jer­emy Glascock and his wife, Amanda, who both realized the church had to get serious about discipleship.

Since the first disciple­ship group began meeting in September 2022, 30 women and 18 men have become involved. Additionally, Sun­day worship has increased from 146 in September 2022 to 245 in February 2024, and the church has celebrated 44 baptisms during that time.

“One of the biggest things we missed in church all these years was discipleship,” Glascock told the Baptist Message. “We baptized all these people, and we didn’t do much else after with them except put them in a Sunday school class.

“But when we began liv­ing life with people in small groups, things changed,” he continued. “It has started a culture change. We used to revolve around just meeting together in church on Sun­day mornings, but now we revolve around discipleship, too.”

Since Glascock arrived in 2017, 178 new believers have been baptized by the church. Dur­ing that time, he noticed that those who accepted Christ and were baptized only had Sunday school to grow spiri­tually. The Glascocks then entered a season of prayer and out of that came a desire to start discipleship groups.

Amanda Glascock in Sep­tember 2022 gathered eight deacons’ wives and began to meet for prayer, Bible study and accountability. Later, two of the wives started their own groups.

Then, in November 2023, the men felt led to start dis­cipleship groups.

Today, three men’s groups and six women’s groups meet every week to sharp­en one another as they grow closer to God and themselves.

Amanda Glascock said she is thankful for how God has used the discipleship groups to deepen the ladies’ walk with Christ.

“You have to give God all the glory,” she said. “It’s humbling to know that He is allowing me to be a part of that and to see these women hunger for more of Christ. Women have learned how to journal, how to pray and how to have a Bible reading plan. It’s so simple but it does take dedication. That’s the root of what Jesus is saying the whole time. Follow me.”

David Guitrau, a deacon and discipleship group mem­ber, has seen God raise up leaders among the men. In his group, the six members rotate each week to lead a session.

“Over the years we have had revivals and people were getting saved,” he said. “Then, after six months we looked, and those people weren’t sitting in the pews. Now, we are seeing people saved and not falling through the cracks because they are getting plugged into discipleship.

“I see men with leader­ship qualities stepping out and stepping up,” he said. “I like to just step back and be a spectator of what God is do­ing in this church.”

Furthermore, Guitrau’s marriage has strengthened with his wife, Lisa, who is a member of a ladies’ disciple­ship group.

“I’m so excited that she has allowed God to use her,” he said. “She’s learned to sur­render herself and say, ‘God here I am for your purpose.’ Now she is right there beside me every day and our mar­riage is stronger.

“Also, my own disciple­ship group has encouraged me to dig deeper and become more of a servant of God,” he continued. “A lot of times I held back a little bit, but now I am able to do more.”

Terri Watson, her husband Jacob, and daughter Madilyn, 19, plugged into a discipleship group after they joined the church in November 2023.

Watson, who accepted Christ in November and was baptized on Christmas Eve, said the groups have helped them grow closer as a family and to develop hearts of ser­vice in various ministries.

“Being a new Christian, that guidance has been a game changer,” she said. “I love sharing things with oth­ers in my group who are both seasoned Christians and new ones.

“Our family is now a lot closer and happier than we’ve ever been,” she added. “Each day we ask each other, ‘Have you had your Jesus time?’ and if we are down or need help with some issue we struggle with, it’s so comforting to have people in my own house to turn to.”