3 Mistakes in Disciple-Making

Most disciple-makers, pastors, and Christian leaders want to see greater fruit in their ministries. Our hearts long for the rapid expansion of God’s Kingdom on earth. Yet often, what we long for and what we experience are quite different. There is a better way, a more effective way to see your community reached. Avoiding a few common disciple-making mistakes can have a tremendous impact.

Let’s unpack these.

  1. Making Things Complicated.
  2. Releasing New Believers Too Slowly.
  3. Focusing on Individuals, Not Groups.
Dandelions multiply naturally and organically. Disciples can do the same.

Making Things Complicated

Our human tendency is to over-complicate things. Spiritual practices are no different. Jesus kept things simple. read more

What Are “Borderless Nets” and How Do I Cast One?

borderless nets

A few days ago, a friend from Bangladesh used the term “borderless nets” in a chat message. It caught my attention. I’m not sure where he got the term, or if someone else used it first. I immediately asked the question that is now the title of this blog. What are ‘borderless nets’ and how do I cast one? I thought about Luke chapter five. Could casting “borderless nets” help us catch the huge number of fish not possible in other ways?

Covid-19 forced us to think and work in new, innovative ways. It pushed us out of the box (or rut) we were in. God is like that. He turns horrible things the enemy intends for evil into good for His kingdom. read more

Emotionally Healthy Discipleship in DMMs

emotionally healthy discipleship

Is it possible to be both deeply committed to emotionally healthy discipleship and also to the rapid multiplication of disciples? It’s an important question worthy of consideration. Can natural fruit grow fast without being eaten by worms? I’m not saying it’s easy. Is it possible?

We live in a world that tends to divide into camps. It’s an either/or world. Jesus wasn’t like this. In fact, He refused to be put in one camp or the other.

Jesus was not Democrat or Republican, or Independent for that matter. Please excuse the reference to American politics, but it so clearly illustrates our tendency toward joining a camp and being loyal to it without learning from and understanding others who are in a “different camp.” read more

Ever Feel Like You Don’t Have What It Takes?

enough for fruit

As we work in Disciple Making Movements, it is common for us to think that we need more. We think, “If we only had more money it would be so much easier to do what we are called to do. if we had more workers…we would finally get results,” we tell ourselves. Or, “If we had more training and more understanding…then things would start happening.” We have come to believe that we need more, that we do not have enough to do what God has called us to do to see a movement of Jesus’ disciples start. read more

5 Ways to Love Your Neighbor

How do we effectively love our neighbors? Why does it feel so awkward and uncomfortable at times? Jesus commanded us to love our neighbors as we love ourselves, but what does that look like practically? It’s different in different cultures, but some things are true in all contexts.

I recently interviewed Dave Ferguson about his recent book B.L.E.S.S. Watch the full one hour interview below.

B.L.E.S.S. stands for:

  • Begin with prayer,
  • Listen,
  • Eat,
  • Serve,
  • Story.
Watch full interview with Dave Ferguson

Prayer is the foundation of everything we do. Dave talks about the importance of making a list of people you pray for regularly by name. read more

What Matters Most? Church Traditions, NT Practices, or the Commands of Christ?

church tradition

Can a layperson or woman baptize? Are baby dedications important or should we baptize the babies of Christian parents? Do pastors need to wear a tie when they preach? These and many other questions we face have a lot to do with church traditions. When we go to the Word of God, on many of these things, we find little (if any) specific guidance.

How do you sort out what to do in your Disciple Making Movement effort? Is it helpful to follow your own denominational tradition? Or do you need to embrace a different way of doing things if you want to see a DMM? read more

Where Do Children Fit in a Disciple Making Movement Strategy?

children and disciple-making

Americans are used to kids learning separately from adults. Age-appropriate learning has value. In Disciple Making Movements, however, we welcome kids as disciples. They must be trained to follow and obey Jesus the same as adults. They can learn, apply, and contribute to a disciple making movement in significant ways.

Jesus didn’t separate children from adults. They were always around Him, included in His circle. In non-Western cultures this is more common than in the West.

How Did Jesus Interact With Children and Disciple Them?

One day children were brought to Jesus in the hope that he would lay hands on them and pray over them. The disciples shooed them off. But Jesus intervened: “Let the children alone, don’t prevent them from coming to me. God’s kingdom is made up of people like these.” After laying hands on them, he left. read more

What Shifts Addition into Multiplication Growth?

addition to multiplication

Your goal is a rapidly multiplying movement of disciples who make disciples. Or at least that was what you heard someone share a vision about. It’s what you’ve been hoping for.

For many who start with a DMM vision, it seems awfully slow in coming.

You’ve worked hard. Shared the gospel often. Prayed much. People have even come to Christ!

But multiplication isn’t happening…

Examine Your Mindsets

Taking a hard look at the difference between what I said I believed and what my actions showed I actually believed was a “tipping point” in my Disciple Making Movement journey. read more

Is Suffering and Pain Part of the Path to Movements? Why?

suffering

I woke early. After prayer, I glanced at my phone and found a difficult message. A dear friend and colleague lost his battle with COVID 19. My heart was broken for the many who loved him. His death is a great loss to the movement where he played a vital role. Suffering and death are part of our lives. What role do they play in pioneering movements?

I’ll be honest. Suffering is not often talked about when we cast vision for Disciple Making Movements (DMMs).

We speak of rapid growth and multiplication. The urgent need of the unreached will only be addressed through a more organic approach, we say. All true. There is a cost to movements. It must be counted and embrace by any who would seriously pursue them. read more

What Does Worship Look Like in Disciple Making Movements?

worship in Disciple Making Movements

“How does worship work in a DMM?” she asked in the chat. My trainee is a gifted worship leader. Would a Disciple Making Movement approach make room for her gifts? The answer is yes, but it looks different than in a traditional (legacy) church.

Worship is vital to our spiritual life. Through worship, we grow close to Jesus, experience His presence, and gaze on His beauty. There, we are transformed. Every disciple must grow as an active worshipper.

Our understanding of worship, needs to grow beyond something that happens in a church building. It doesn’t need a sound system or gifted musicians leading a congregation. We need a more Biblical understanding of worship, and a more reproducible model. read more