Discipleship (Developing a Plan)
Developing a Basic Discipleship Plan
Every Christian is responsible to develop the next generation of disciples (follower of Jesus). While there are many different methods and philosophies for disciple making, at its heart discipleship is one person investing in another. In order to leave a legacy that outlives you, you must make disciples. Here are some guidelines that can be helpful when designing a basic discipleship plan that fits your people.
A Basic Discipleship Plan comes in three types:
1. Spiritual Formation: the inner life of identity, Bible reading and prayer.
2. Missional Engagement: the exterior life of public faith, testimony, justice and witness
3. Accountable Life: the internal Lordship of Jesus made external through confession, sacrifice and holiness
There are 5 parts to developing your own Basic Discipleship Plan.
Identify Your Values
Imagine you connect with a new believer (or a believer who recently decided to take Jesus seriously). You want to help them grow deeply as a disciple but unfortunately, they will be moving soon. What are the discipleship essentials you will pass on? Another question to ask yourself is, “what would you mourn if they did not know/value?”
List 20 values → narrow it to 10 → narrow it to 5
You can have more than 5 but this shows priority
Investigate your values, do you touch on these three categories?
1. Spiritual formation
2. Missional engagement
3. Accountable life
Share these Values
How do you communicate the values?
Examples can be the “hear response debrief cycle,” a weekly teaching, modelling
Here’s an example of a cyclical approach. First a person hears something from Jesus, then responds through action then returns for a time of debrief. From the place of debrief there is another opportunity to hear from Jesus and the cycle begins again. This cycle might take place over week(s) or on the same day. or both!
Apply these Values
What tools or methods can you give them? How do you take your value and convert that into something concrete?
Example: “We value Bible study” → Teach the OIA (Observe, Interpret, Apply) study technique → give space to concretely pray the Lord’s prayer
How will you deliver the values? What’s the setting? You might choose to outsource this step to an Underground conference, seminar, prayer room so don’t think you have to generate every platform yourself.
Examples: Class, small group setting, book study, one-on-one meetings
How long will your basic discipleship plan take to walk through? How often will you meet in that time period? Even though our entire lives are defined as being disciples our BDP’s shouldn’t last forever. Have a definite beginning and know when it ends.