HOW OUR POST-MODERN CULTURE HAS DISRUPTED THE MODERN MAP FOR DISCIPLE MAKING

HOW OUR POST-MODERN CULTURE HAS DISRUPTED THE MODERN MAP FOR DISCIPLE MAKING

How can people engage relationally?

If you view the disciple making process like a map – chances are the map you used in the 20th century is different than the map you use in the 21st century.  The modern map began with Believing’, followed by ‘Behaving’ and culminated with Belonging’.  In the post-Modern era the map looks more like this: “Belonging”, “Following” and “Serving”

How can people engage in their disciple making journey?

How can people help others?

Special thanks to Sequoia Church, Nic Pope - Lead Pastor  Used with permission

Jesus mastered the art of listening and asking questions to help people discover truth for themselves!  Today, self-discovery is foundational to the disciple making process.  This is why disciples have shifted from telling people (Modern) what they should believe to self-discovery (Post-Modern) using a coach-approach.

We are getting closer and closer to launching the Disciple Coach Quiz.  As we beta-test the quiz we are receiving amazing feedback.  “Our goal?  To provide a tool that will help you and those you disciple progress through the three stages mentioned in a previous blog: beginning with being a disciple – shifting to a disciple maker – finally, adopting a coach-approach as you make disciples.”    Stay tuned for more updates in the weeks to come!

Research suggests that about 2% of the churches in America are multiplying so I think it is fair to speculate that about 2% of Christians are making disciples, that are making disciples. 

(Becoming A Level Five Multiplying Church Field Guide)

So, we created the Disciple Coach Quiz to inspire the 98%.  These are Christians who are looking for a way to use their gifts where God has placed them in life to help other people discover and follow Jesus so that they can make disciples.  Our aim is not to have another thing for people to do or a program to follow, but to make several natural shifts that will enable each of you to make disciples who in turn make disciples.

THE JOURNEY OF A DISCIPLE COACH

THE JOURNEY OF A DISCIPLE COACH

DISCIPLE

As a disciple I am learning from Jesus to live my life as he would live life if he were I.  I am not necessarily learning to do everything he did, but I am learning how to do everything I do in the manner in which he did all that he did. 

Dallas Willard

DISCIPLE MAKER

Someone who is living out of a Basic Core that exhibits a love for God in Christ and a love for others that leads to making disciples. 

Colin Noyes

DISCIPLE COACH

A disciple coach helps their newest disciples by listening and asking questions to help them discern the voice of the Holy Spirit so that they can take the next step in their discipling making journey.  

Gary Reinecke

Notice the nuanced progression:

  1. The disciple, by definition, is a student.
  2. The disciple shifts, ever so slight, when they become a disciple maker.
  3. The disciple maker shifts, by adopting a coach approach, to multiply disciples.

These three nuanced shifts are observable.  You have probably experienced them in your own development.  One way of looking at this is moving from a disciple who makes disciples by addition (one at a time) to a multiplier (exponential growth into the 3rd and 4th generation of disciples).

The vision fueling the disciple coach-approach is to engage Christians who are not currently making disciples, for whatever reason, to participate in the mission of Jesus.  “How so?”  By listening to the Holy Spirit, take the next step on their disciple making journey so that they can help people around them do the same.

We are getting closer and closer to launching the Disciple Coach Quiz.  As we beta-test the quiz we are receiving amazing feedback.  “Our goal?  To provide a tool that will help you and those you disciple progress through the three stages mentioned above: beginning with being a disciple – shifting to a disciple maker – finally, adopting a coach-approach as you make disciples.”    Stay tuned for more updates in the weeks to come!

Did Jesus use a coach approach to make disciples?

Did Jesus use a coach approach to make disciples?

I’m reminded how dangerous or naive it is to make broad generalizations about the way Jesus made disciples.  How can we really know?

Early in my seminary education I had a professor who lived-out the values of a disciple maker.  He was an imposing figure (6’5″-ish) but Dr. William “Bill” Iverson (this is linked to my classmate’s blog – Dave Diaso) was a relational ninja who was always on the ready to engage students in the ministry of disciple making.  What he lacked in methodology he made up for relationally; that is, he did not work a linear process but started where people were on their journey to discover and follow Jesus.  During my first quarter in seminary “Bill” introduced me to Robert Coleman’s book, “The Master Plan of Evangelism”.  In this small but profound book Coleman articulated Jesus’s strategy for making disciples.  I saw the method to “Bill’s” madness from the pages of this book.  It was a framework for disciple making.  I remember taking all of the small group leader’s and apprentice leader in the church plant I was helping launch through this book together.  It embedded the DNA of make disciples into our small groups at New Song Church.

I’m using Coleman’s framework to “reverse engineer” (meaning to compare and contrast to find the correlation) the 5 habits of a Disciple Coach.  As you study the 5 habits see how they fit into the way Jesus made disciples according to Coleman.

Here are a underlying principles that consistently determined what Jesus’ action would be in any given situation as he made disciples:

  1. Selection – men were His method
  2. Association – He stayed with them
  3. Consecration – He required obedience
  4. Impartation – He gave Himself away
  5. Demonstration – He showed them how to live
  6. Delegation – He assigned them work
  7. Supervision – He kept check on them
  8. Reproduction – He expected them to reproduce

Robert Coleman’s – “The Master Plan of Evangelism”

Here are the 5 Disciple Coach Habits and how they correlate with Coleman’s 8 disciple making principles:

  1. Missional Values – CLICK HERE
    • Consecration – He required obedience
    • Delegation – He assigned them work
  2. Active Prayer – CLICK HERE
    • Selection – men were His method
  3. Relational Connection – CLICK HERE
    • Association – He stayed with them
    • Impartation – He gave Himself away
  4. Disciple making Cycle – CLICK HERE
    • Reproduction – He expected them to reproduce
  5. Strategic Partnerships – CLICK HERE
    • Demonstration – He showed them how to live
    • Supervision – He kept check on them

The Disciple Coach Quiz is designed to help you establish a baseline of where you are today.  Secondly, for those you are discipling.

Each Disciple Coach Habit has a corresponding Coaching Guide.  The guides are broken down into the following categories:

    • Key Outcomes – Best practices for you to identify with as a disciple coach.
    • Example – Read about ways to put the habit into practice.
    • Reflection Questions – Discover new insights.
    • Action Application – Apply the habit in your ministry as a disciple coach.
    • Resource – Dig deeper to understand the habit.
    • Challenge – Take the next step on your journey to reinforce the habit.

The Disciple Coach Quiz provides a baseline (strengths and weaknesses) and the coaching guide is designed for you to identify real actions you can take in the areas of desired growth.  It also serves as a tool for you to ask those your are discipling to assess themselves and for you to coach them in their development.

We are in the final stretch of beta-testing the Disciple Coach Quiz and it will be ready any day now.

Thank you to those who are providing feedback as we get ready to launch.

Recommended book on the principles of disciple making

THE JOURNEY OF A DISCIPLE COACH

Disciple Coach QUIZ – 3 Applications

As we approach the launch of of the Disciple Coach Quiz in a few weeks, we thought it might be helpful to explain the best ways to use the quiz to support your work as a Disciple Coach.

In his work as a regional leader supporting pastors and church planters to increase the health of their disciple making ministries, Glenn has invited leaders to take the quiz for their own awareness to accelerate their work as disciple makers.  That is a good first step. Here are the three applications to gain the most from the Disciple Coach Quiz

What are the best ways to use the Disciple Coach Quiz?

  • Good – take the quiz yourself!
    • Like we mentioned above; this is an excellent first step.  It will help you focus on the habit you need to develop to continue your journey.  Awareness is a powerful exercise.
  • Better – ask 1-3 of your most committed disciple makers to take the quiz!
    • This builds on the previous application but now you are expanding your circle of influence so that you can more strategically support the disciple coaches you are coaching.  You might want to function like a peer-to-peer learning community to share insights you are discovering along the way.  You might want to consider meeting periodically to reinforce the learnings along the way and facilitate those conversations using a coach approach.
  • Best – from the group above, ask the most engaged disciple makers to share the quiz with people in their network!
    • Invite them to do the same thing that you did with them.  For the Disciple Coach it is natural to coach (listen and ask questions) of people they are supporting on their discipleship journey.  The best kinds of people for this level of involvement are small group leaders, outward focused ministry teams and entrepreneurial types who are relationally connected to people far from God.

We are in the final stretch of beta-testing the Disciple Coach Quiz.  It will be ready any day now.  Would you consider taking it and giving us feedback on whether this is a helpful resource for you and those you are coaching on their discipleship journey?

Exciting News – Habits of a Disciple Coach

Exciting News – Habits of a Disciple Coach

One thing I’ve observed over the last three decades is that there are many resources available to make disciples.

I asked my friend Glenn (who serves in a regional role in a network of churches who are bent on making disciples, developing leaders and planting new churches) what church leaders need to move their disciplemaking efforts forward.  What I should tell you about Glenn is that he is not a pastor.  Glenn is a former businessman with a heart for helping churches become attractive communities where people, who are far from God, connect with Him.  This is important because when we discussed what the churches really need in his region, he was coming from the perspective of a highly engaged leader in his church, who is struggling through the challenge of making disciples in the Harvest and then resourcing pastors and church planters to empower their people.

Glenn and me discussed the question at length.  We agreed that the pastors did not need another book.  Just for fun I googled “disciple making books” and found 78,800,000 results.

Two observations we made:

  1. Focus on Implementation: we observed that the missing piece for leaders we are serving is taking action.
  2. Self-discovery is Critical: we also observed that most leaders in ministry are trained to speak and communicate knowledge.  Unique to this time is the need to listen – truly listen.  We believe there is a need to shift to an approach based on self-discovery (listening and asking questions).  This is why we have described the disciple maker as a Disciple Coach – a person that comes alongside people to help them discover the next step they sense God wants them to take on their discipleship journey.

This changed our focus from creating content to helping leaders identify areas disciple makers need support to accelerate their efforts into the second, third and fourth generation!  This is precisely why we have worked hard at understanding the habits of a Disciple Coach.  Jesus conveyed knowledge (in word and deed) in conjunction with authentic relationship – as he empowered His disciples!  We simply wanted to understand the nature of the support He provided.  That helped us refocus our energy from content to support.  I like the term “content agnostic” to describe the approach we used.  The way you make disciples needs to fit you and your ministry.  That is not what the habits are intended to accomplish.  We focused on the best ways to support the work a disciple needs to be fruitful.

See our previous blogs under each of the 5 Disciple Coach Habits:

  1. Missional ValuesCLICK HERE
  2. Active PrayerCLICK HERE
  3. Relational ConnectionCLICK HERE
  4. Disciple making CycleCLICK HERE
  5. Strategic PartnershipsCLICK HERE

Our journey to support the work of disciple makers, has led us to develop an online quiz.

We are committed to help pastors, church planters and missionaries (like Glenn) assess the kind of support they need.  Over the course of the next few blogs I will be sharing the various aspects of the quiz and the report you will receive explaining your quiz results:

  • Score Breakdown – graph of your current strengths and weaknesses as a Disciple Coach (see image above)
  • Key Areas – a brief explanation of the area you need to focus, linked to a coaching guide to help you develop this area
  • Book a free call – you will be invited to schedule a no-obligation, free 25-minute Zoom call with me.

Would you consider taking the quiz and providing feedback for us?  We are curious if what we have developed will be of help to you and those you are partnering with to make disciples.  I look forward to sharing the various applications of the quiz leading up to the launch later this month.