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?
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.
1. Casual Catch Up
Some common and casual conversation should take place in each and every discipleship meeting. Because one of the primary elements of discipleship is a personal relationship with each other, it is important the there be time dedicated to simply catching up on things and talking casually. A few questions you might ask are:
- How was your day?
- How are things going?
- Is there anything new going on?
- Is there anything you have struggled with since we last met?
Asking these questions of the person being discipled not only helps to develop a strong relationship between both people, but it also helps to direct you to what you need to emphasize that day’s study on. It allows you to tailor what is about to be studied in a way that is relevant to the disciple’s life.
2. Share Some of Your Own life
Successful discipleship occurs when the mentor shares authentically what he is going through and what he is experiencing in life. Discipleship is about allowing the mentee to observe and learn from the mentor’s life as well as what it means to follow Jesus Christ. The proverb that “more is caught than taught” definitely rings true when in the context of discipleship. The person being discipled is going to learn more much about Jesus and what it means to follow him by simply spending time with the mentor. In order to authentically share what you are going through and share your life with the person being discipled, here are a few areas you might want to share about:
- What you’ve done since your last meeting
- What you’ve learned since your last meeting
- What you’ve struggled with
- What you are excited about
3. Dig Into Your Study
The study of the Bible is the main element of the discipleship meeting. Yes, relationship between the discipler and disciplee (or mentor and mentee) is extremely important, but the study is perhaps slightly more important.
This is where the two people dig into the Bible, topic, or book they are studying through together. If you are the person preparing materials and a lesson in order to disciple the other person, be sure you prepare well. You have been entrusted with the highest honor of discipling one of God’s newest children. This job must be taken seriously. When I prepare for my meetings with Allan, I spend at least five hours in preparation for our meetings (right now we are studying through the Big Events of the Old Testament).
When you study, be sure that the study consists of a conversation, not a lecture. You and the disciple should wrestle with the scripture together, not as a one sided monologue Be prepared with questions for the person being discipled to help him apply it to his own life.
4. Close with Prayer and Offer Encouragement
The final element of the discipleship meeting is to close in prayer and offer encouragement to the person being discipled. This is time to pray for God’s direction and leading in the life of the disciple. Intercede on her behalf. After the prayer say something nice and encouraging to the disciple. Encourage her to keep studying, keep learning, and keep listening to God.
This might not be an exhaustive list of what a discipleship meeting should look like, but it what I use when discipling Allan.
Question: What does a discipleship meeting look like when you have participated as a disciple or mentor?