Discipleship Is an Investment—It's Not a Program



Making disciples is embedded in the Great Commission (Matt 28:19). It’s not a suggestion, it’s a command from Jesus.

But how does someone make disciples? The simple, perhaps the obvious answer, is to follow the example of Jesus. But what was the model He left for us to follow?

Plenty of books can be found on the subject. The time-tested classic is The Master Plan of Evangelism by Robert Coleman but there are other solid options available today. Various curriculums for establishing a program for discipleship are also plentiful.

But Jesus’ approach was very simple and He didn’t give His first followers a guidebook for making disciples His way. The approach of Jesus was intentional and very personal, and He expected His disciples to make other disciples—I will make you fishers of men (Matt 4:19).

Jesus poured His life into the lives of His followers for about three years and this is what we see replicated in the Book of Acts through the first apostles. The apostle Paul extended this model as expressed in his exhortation to Timothy—

You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. (2 Tim 2:1-2)

Jesus knew if He discipled people to be disciplemakers, leaders would emerge through the process of discipleship. This was His plan through the guidance of the Holy Spirit (John 14:26; 15:26-27; 16:13-15; Acts 1:2).

Jesus was intentional and very personal and expected His disciples to make other disciples

Podcasts on discipleship and developing leaders

Pastor Bill Holdridge has recorded several podcasts related to discipleship and developing leaders. The most recent one was with a brother who discipled and mentored Bill—Pastor Cliff Stabler. It’s excellent and is a great example of the model Jesus left us, as Bill’s testimony makes clear.

The next one I’d recommend is a podcast with Pastor Paul Berry on raising up biblical elders. Again, it is excellent and something I would have benefited from when I started in my first pastorate.

The next two podcasts are with me (Trip) and complement the other two podcasts. The last two podcasts—but definitely not the least—are with Pastor Bob Claycamp on identifying future leaders and complement the podcast with Ptr Paul Berry.

We hope these are an encouragement and practical help for you. Give them a listen and let us know how they bless you! (See the links below!)


What We Can Do to Reconnect Young People to Church

Photo by  Devin Avery  on  Unsplash

Photo by Devin Avery on Unsplash

Many Christian leaders are concerned about younger generations and their faith or lack thereof and for good reason. A bunch of research backs up this concern. Here are just a few reports—

Are we losing younger generations from church and the Christian faith? Yes, and we need to learn new ways to reconnect with young people.

The Calvary Chapel movement of churches was part of the Jesus People Movement of ‘60s and ‘70s. A major part of that movement were young people who were disenchanted with church, politics, and religion.

Just as then, the established church didn’t know how to reach many of us who were spiritual wanderers in those days. But God did and used many people from established churches who were willing to reach them in new ways.

In the two podcasts linked below, Pastor Bill interviews Pastor Bryan Newberry on what we as pastors can do to reach and reconnect with young people.

I’ve seen Pastor Bryan in action and have seen the fruit of his ministry, so check out these podcasts for his insights.


Excellence in Ministry Begins with Us

Photo by  Aaron Burden  on  Unsplash

I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts on my drives to and from ministry assignments with Poimen Ministries. I’m sure I’m a bit biased but the content of our podcasts is excellent.

What is shared in these interviews are topics and insights I wish I’d had the benefit of hearing when starting out in ministry, especially the pastorate.

I mentioned a while back—too long ago I’m embarrassed to say—I’d be writing some blog posts featuring the topics covered in our podcasts. If you didn’t see that post, here’s a link to it— A Pastor Is More Than a Teacher

I may jump around a bit on the topics but wanted to start off with our first 3 podcasts on Excellence in Ministry with Pastor Al James.

3 Interviews with Pastor Al James

Pastor Al is more than a friend and team member of Poimen to me—he’s been a coach and mentor, especially in the area of pastoral transition. I reached out and relied on his counsel many times as I led my first official pastoral transition with Poimen.

I encourage you to listen to these podcasts in their sequence but whatever the order, I encourage you to listen and take in the excellent encouragements and insights Al shares with Pastor Bill in these podcasts.

I’ll include the titles and links below.

Happy listening and be blessed!