People learn to discover and follow Jesus in community.  Few environments do that better than a small group.  This begs the question, what did Jesus focus on when he trained His disciples.

Jesus was a disciplemaker and leader developer.

Excellent small groups do these two things consistently:

  1. Make Disciples
  2. Train Leaders

I have learned that people benefit when they understand what a “win” is for one process (disciplemaking) and a “win” for the other (leadership development).  I have also learned that these two areas bleed into each other.  I love the phrase Neil Cole coined: “Raise the bar of discipleship and lower the bar for leadership”.  I have one other nuance to add:

Clarify the developmental path so people know where they are and where they are going!

What does excellent “people development” look like?

In the small group I lead with my wife, Gina, we have established a nourishing environment for people to navigate their disciplemaking journey.  Just as critical, we have communicated that we are looking for a few good leaders to reproduce our group.  I find the clearer we define the “win”, the more secure people feel and confident they are knowing where they are in their development.  BTW – these two processes continue throughout our lifetimes – right?

Here are two developmental processes that simplify the people development process for:

Three questions to strengthen people development process in your small group:

  1. What behaviors does a fruitful disciple demonstrate as a disciple of Jesus?
  2. What behaviors does an effective leader demonstrate as a leader?
  3. What does that developmental process look like for a:
    • disciple?
    • leader?

Please respond below if you have a process you follow for either:

  • Disciplemaking
  • Leadership Development


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