Addressing Transition Weakness: Assimilation and Disciple-making

I shared the following graphic on my Sunday School blog, The Sunday School Revolutionary. But I got to thinking that the graphic applies to assimilation and disciple-making as well. Take a look:

In order to develop a disciple-making strategy and system, some critical questions must be answered about transitions:

  1. What are we doing to invite and attract people into worship?
  2. What are we doing to move worship attenders into Sunday School and small groups?
  3. What are we doing to make disciples and to multiply and develop leaders in Sunday School, small groups, and training sessions and experiences to prepare and move them into leadership in the church and community?
  4. What are we doing to mobilize our classes, groups, and leaders into ministry, service, and mission in the community and world?

Answer thesse questions thoroughly to discover your assimilation and discipleship transitional weaknesses. If there are more than three transitional steps before worship or between any block, your process is too complicated. Your leaders will have a hard time explaining the strategy, and those you are trying to assimilate and disciple will tend to drop out from the process along the way.

Gather your disciple-making team (see Enlist a Disciple-making Team for more ideas). Talk through the graphic and these questions. Simplify and streamline your strategy and your transitions. Take your strategy on a trial run. Get feedback. Make adjustments and improvements.

To get your thinking flowing further, let me ask three addtional questions:

  • Where would you place a new member class in the graphic? Should it be required?
  • Since it is difficult to disciple a drop out, what can be done to encourage and track disciple-making progress? For instance, how could assigning an encourager (personal mentor) help move a disciple through the strategy?
  • Where in the graphic might be the best place to discover a disciple’s spiritual gifts, abilities, experience, and passions for service? What happens if the discovery is separated from mobilization into service?

Do you have questions or comments? Press “Leave a comment” below. Help me and others improve our thinking and questions.

For more ideas about making-disciples, check out these blog posts:

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