To illustrate the basic elements of an intentional discipleship system, we offer this chart (adapted from the work of Phil Maynard) in Developing an Intentional Discipleship System: A Guide for Congregations. In the far left column we have listed the basic characteristics of a disciple (Worship, Community, Spiritual Practices, Generous, Services, Christ-like). In the far right column we describe what a maturing disciple looks like using those same characteristics. Across the top we list the basic stages of growth for a disciple. We then fill in what the characteristics of a disciple might look like across the stages of growth. We invite you to take this simple system and make it your own. Your church or ministry setting has a unique context and uses specific language as it relates to making disciples. Change this chart to make the most sense for your community. It is only by making these basic concepts true for your community that your church leadership will be able to own the system that you are creating.
Now if you remove the descriptions of each characteristic at each stage of growth, you are left with a simple discipleship system chart. Now think about your church ministries as a system that helps create the space needed for new people to follow Jesus, helping them grow and mature in their faith in each of the characteristics that you have listed. Where are the gaps? Are you offering opportunities in the right places?
Learn more about this chart and how to use it by downloading the Developing an Intentional Discipleship System guide »