7 More Keys to Making Reproducing Disciples
Here are 7 More Keys to becoming the confident, effective, and consistent Disciple Maker of Jesus you know you can and should be.
If you missed the first 6 Keys then here is the link 6 Keys to Disciple Making
These Keys, like the first 6 Keys, have been learned as we’ve been out in the community working to Make Reproducing Disciples.
These are in no particular order …
Key #1 — Good First Encounters Do NOT Guarantee Good Second Encounters
After having a good first encounter with someone:
1 Praying with them
2 Asking if it would be okay if we come back sometime and see how they are doing,
3 Them telling us it is okay for us to come back and check on them
Even after all those positive vibes — DO NOT ASSUME the follow up encounter is going to go well.
Following up with people will also result in lots of rejection (just like the initial encounter) — Expect it!!! And don’t be surprised or discouraged by it.
After getting comfortable with talking to strangers, knocking on doors, asking people if we could pray for them, and asking for permission to follow up with them — we assumed the follow up encounters would be smooth sailing. Not So.
Key #2 — Chasing After Numbers is a Constant Battle
Chasing after numbers is a constant battle.
Numbers are needed to track and Compassionately Ruthlessly Honestly Self-Evaluate what’s going on so you can better do what you’re doing. And to effectively support those involved with you.
BUT, they can also become a source of pride. Being used to prove your worth. We all struggle with pride at some level. We can either admit or deny it. But pride is very dangerous.
Big numbers do not necessarily indicate you’re doing what God wants. Small numbers do not necessarily indicate you’re not doing what God wants.
For both instances you must go to God and double check with Him that you’re doing what He wants done. And that you’re doing it the way He wants it done.
Key #3 — Working Over There Doesn’t Mean It Will Work Here
The last 4 years have been a lot about trying to emulate here what we’ve learned from other more experienced people. We’ve found most of it doesn’t work in our context.
The general principles of making reproducing disciples is applicable across all contexts and cultures. The specific application of those principles varies from one context to another.
The solution to this problem is going back to the basics of: read the Bible, listen to the Holy Spirit, and let them teach/show us what you should be doing and how you should be doing it.
Being part of making a large number of reproducing disciples in one or more parts of the world does not mean they know what it specifically looks like in your context.
Key #4 — Effective Disciple Maker Trainers Are Doing It Themselves
To be an effective trainer/equipper of Disciple Makers you Must be out doing the work yourself.
Not out training others to do it but you are actually interacting with lost people with the objective of Making Reproducing Disciples.
Unfortunately there are a lot of people out there training others how to make reproducing disciples who are not doing it themselves.
If you’re not out actively working to make reproducing disciples on a regular basis then you’re training and talking about theory developed in the bubble of a classroom or laboratory.
You are not passing on in your training what you’ve learned in the real life crucible of regularly interacting with lost people — people who are not predictable like the sanitized model created in the insulated classroom or laboratory.
Key #5 — It’s Easy to Get Distracted with “Good Christian Things”
It’s easy to get distracted from the the core activities of Making Reproducing Disciples by seemingly “Good Christian Things”.
The core Making Reproducing Disciples activities of:
Practicing your Disciple Making skills
Engaging with people (friends and strangers)
Loving and Caring for people
Attempting to start Spiritual Conversations
Sharing Your Story
Sharing God’s Story
Guiding them on their Next Steps
We can get caught up in helping people with physical needs and never attempting to start Spiritual Conversations.
We can get caught up in serving in our church — music/worship team, children’ ministry, teaching, going to Bible studies, ushering, building upkeep and maintenance, parking lot attendants, serving on the meal team, being in church leadership or a board, etc. Yet, never engaging with unbelievers to make disciples.
Key #6 — There are Many Hurting and Lonely People in Our Communities
People are open and receptive to having a stranger pray for them.
There are a lot of hurting and lonely people in our communities. They are needing someone to love them by listening to their story without judgement, praying with/for them, and sharing something from God’s Word with them.
When I started this adventure I was fearful of how people would react when I stopped them on the street or knocked on their door.
To my surprise very few people are upset by this. In fact, people share deep personal information with us. Many of those who don’t want us to pray with them will thank us for what we’re doing.
The response I’ve experienced from people is the opposite from what I expected.
Go out and love on strangers. You might be surprised at the response you receive.
Key #7 — Do NOT Prejudge the Outcome of a Conversation
Share the Gospel abundantly without prejudging what you believe the outcome of the encounter will be. Then come back (follow up) to find out which is the “Good Soil.” It’s following Jesus’ explanation in the parable of The Sower (Mt 13/Lk 8)
I find myself over and over using my prejudging of how I think someone will respond to a spiritual conversation as the filter to decide if I should talk to that person.
And, my prejudging is usually based more on how “tough” I think the person appears instead of based on what the Holy Spirit is telling me. The “easy” ones I approach and talk with. The “tough” ones I move on.
We’ve been surprised over and over with who does and doesn’t want to talk about spiritual things.
The 7 More Keys to Making Reproducing Disciples
1. Good First Encounters Do NOT Guarantee Good Second Encounters
2. Chasing After Numbers is a Constant Battle
3. Working Over “There” Doesn’t Mean It Will Work Here
4. Effective Disciple Maker Trainers Are Doing It Themselves
5. It’s Easy to Get Distracted with “Good Things”
6. There are Many Hurting and Lonely People in Our Communities
7. Do NOT Prejudge the Outcome of a Conversation
Next Steps to Developing God’s Heart:
Two Questions for you To Think About:
1st Based on What God Has Shown Me…What Am I Going to Do About It? — (Loving God)
2nd Who Am I Going to Attempt to Share with About Jesus? — (Loving People)
Spend some time with God. Listen to what He shows you in response to those questions. Then DO what He says.
We Are Working to ….
1 Raise up an Army of 100% Sold-Out Committed Disciple Makers … And
2 Change the Definition of a Successful Church from its “Sunday Attendance Numbers” to its “Lifetime Sent Out Numbers”.
In order to see God’s worldwide plan completed in this lifetime.
Consider Joining Us.
So … Let Us Be About Doing Our Job!!!
Going Out and Serving as a Disciple Makings Ambassador for the King.
We Are NOT Living for NOW. But We Are Living NOW … For Eternity.
Until All Hear