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When talking with people about what is “church” I often hear someone say, “But hey, the Bible says ‘where two are gathered in Jesus’ name, I am with you.’ People will often use this phrase to describe how a small group is a church. Yet, the context of that passage has nothing to do with what a church is or what a church does. In Matt 18:19-20 the context is correcting another believer and prayer, not what is or is not a church.

What is the Church

Photo Credit: Peter’s First Preaching (The Bible and Its Story, vol 10)

With that said, let’s look at what the church actually is. From my understanding of the Bible there are seven key elements of a church.

I. MAKE DISCIPLES

First, the church is commanded to go into all nations and make disciples. Continue Reading…

Discipleship is core to the Christian faith. It is the way we reproduce ourselves and pour our lives into the new Christians learning to live a life obedient to the Bible and Jesus’ example. But, what should a discipleship meeting look like? How should it flow? What should be talked about?

pic of two people meeting

Flickr Photo Credit: Digital Internet

As I shared in a past post I have began discipling a young man named Allan (not his real name). We have been meeting and I am doing my best to disciple him. My model of discipling Allan comes from what I was taught while at student at Fresno Pacific University and what has been modeled to me through the mentorship of Steve Elliott.

Based on these experiences, here is a picture of what I believe a disciple meeting should look like. Continue Reading…

The process of discipling a new Christian is important and critical to the Christian faith. Therefore, deciding what to study when a discipleship relationship begins is also vitally important and must be done with care and tact.

pic of books to study

Flickr Photo Credit: jimmiehomeschoolmom

This year I have enjoyed the process of discipling a young man named Allan (not his real name). However, the beginning of a discipleship relationship is very important because it lays the foundation for what is going to occur later in the discipleship process. In the second meeting Allan and I had we were faced with the topic of how to decide what to study. Continue Reading…

When a person comes to the end of his life he is going to be selective with his last words. He will only say what he feels is most important; those will be the words remembered by everyone who hears them.

Why Discipling Others is Important pic

Knowing the importance and significance of a person’s last words helps us to understand the importance of Jesus’ final words:

. . . Go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always even to the end of the age. 1 Continue Reading…

Notes:

  1. Matthew 28:19-20 NLT

Today's post continues a three part series titled, My Story of Being Discipled. To read yesterday's post, go here.

I believe the most important mark of a productive discipleship environment is that the person being discipled must have a desire to grow.

If the person being discipled lacks motivation and desire to grow, then the discipleship relationship will go nowhere. One of the reasons that I believe my relationship has been productive with Steve is that I have been hungry to grow. Even though Steve came to me and offered to disciple me, I have not taken his offer lightly. I take every opportunity that I possibly can to learn and grow from him.

Another important element that I believe a discipleship relationship should have is that the person giving the discipling must have a sincere interest in the disciple. In my relationship with Steve, I have always felt that he has a genuine desire to serve me. He always offers his time to me for free and he even tries to purchase his own coffee when we meet (which I never let him do). If Steve offered the discipling with a strong interest in his personal gain, I do not think that I would have allowed Steve to have as much of an influence on my life.

Because I know Steve is altruistic in his offer to help me, his suggestions and insight mean much more to me than it would if I felt he was trying to get something out of our relationship or if he had some type of a secret agenda he was trying to fulfill. Knowing that a desire to grow and a sincere interest are important to have in discipling relationships, I hope to make those part of the future discipling relationships I am involved in.

I am fortunate that my friend, John Calhoun, asked me to disciple and mentor him. I feel honored and am grateful that he would look to me for guidance and insight about how to live a righteous life that allows him and his family to reach their goals.

Going forward with my relationship with John, I want these two elements in our relationship: 1) John’s desire to learn, and, 2) my sincere desire to serve him. I want to see that John has a desire to learn by him making progress and following through on his action items that he is assigned between our meetings. And I want to show him that I have a sincere desire to help him by asking him what I can do to serve him and clearing explaining to him that I expect nothing in return as a result of our relationship.

For three and a half years I have been the beneficiary of a discipling relationship that started with me sharing my vision with Steve. I am grateful for his help and I can clearly see the positive difference (and the strong need) that discipleship makes in the life of someone before becoming a Christian and shortly after making that decision. Now, I am grateful for the opportunity that I have to foster a great discipling relationship with John going forward.

Question: I am interested to hear of any type of mentor or discipleship relationship you have benefited from?