What Exactly is a Disciple?
A disciple, or a mentee is a learner. It can be compared to a medical apprentice. A student who follows a doctor around to learn how to become a doctor. A disciple is someone who not just acquires knowledge but learns skills on how to be about the mission the Lord has given. Therefore a mentor, or discipler is someone who takes someone under their wing who wants to live for Jesus and helps them walk by faith, communicate their faith and multiply their faith.
How to be a Discipler
In Part Two I gave some practical steps on how to find someone to disciple and how to go about initiating that relationship with them. In this post I will give you some tracks to run on, some things to do with your disciple.
Helpful Tools to Disciple
Lets start with the big picture, the end goal, with your disciple.
Like I said above, the goal is not to just transfer information but help them walk by faith, communicate their faith and multiply their faith. I love how Walter Henrichsen in his book, Disciples Are Made Not Born, explains it.
"Healthy disciples, like healthy cells, reproduce themselves. Reproduction and multiplication is something that God has ordained as a natural part of the life cycle. God's plan in the Great Commission is for believers to reproduce in a manner that is significantly similar to human reproduction. The world's population is exploding. God's plan, as set forth in the Great Commission is for explosive reproduction of believers by discipling each new believer to reproductive maturity.
Let’s say for example that a gifted evangelist is able to lead 1,000 people to Christ every day. Each year he will have reached 365,000 people, a phenomenal ministry indeed. Let’s compare him with a disciple who leads not 1,000 people a day to Christ, but only one person a year. At the end of the year, the disciple has one convert; the evangelist, 365,000. But suppose the disciple has not only led this man to Christ, but has also discipled him. He has prayed with him, taught him how to feed himself from the Word of God, gotten him into fellowship with like-minded believers, taken him out on evangelism and showed him how to present the Gospel to other people. At the end of that first year, this new convert is able to lead another man to Christ and follow him up as he himself has been followed up.
At the start of the second year, the disciple has doubled his ministry—the one has become two. During the second year, each man goes out and leads not 1,000 people per day to Christ, but one person per year. At the end of the second year, we have four people. You can see how slow our process is. But note, too, that we do not have only converts, but disciples who are able to reproduce themselves. At this rate of doubling every year, the disciple leading one man per year to Christ, will overtake the evangelist numerically somewhere in the 19th year. From then on, the disciple and his multiplying ministry will be propagating faster than the combined ministry of dozens of gifted evangelists."
The goal is reproduction. How do you go about achieving that end? Below is a free printable outline of what your time together with your disciple can look like with the end goal in mind. To download click the image below and then save as. (And be sure to subscribe for free to get more great content, access to our library of a ton of other free printables like this and my free ebook Ministry Resources for Women.)
There are many good Bible studies to use with your disciple (I obviously like the ones I wrote), but I had an experience once that impacted what I do with every girl I meet with. I had discipled a girl for over a year. We did a lot of what was in the DISCIPLE acronym (though I hadn't written that yet) but I assumed she understood the basics/foundations of the faith. Things like the importance of the Word of God and how to have a quiet time, what fellowship was, what evangelism was, how to walk in the Spirit, eternal security and so on so. Years later in conversation she said, "Somehow I just totally missed the basics" and that one comment cut to the gut. I believe many believers today go to church and really want to grow and see God use them but are completely missing the foundational stuff. The truths that are going to sustain their relationship with God for the long haul.
So as far as the D in the acronym, Dive into God's Word, here is a helpful tool that will help make sure your disciple doesn't miss the foundational, super important stuff, the things that will make for a strong, lasting relationship with the Lord. It's a packet that functions a lot like a Bible study. It's set up for 12 weeks, just go through one topic a week. To download for free click the image below. Or if you'd like a more professional printed version you can get one for you and one for the person your discipling Thrive Discipleship Packet here.
And I want to leave you with one other helpful tool (though there are so many). Good questions will help surface issues that need to be addressed, but sometimes it's hard to think of them. So here's a list you can choose from. Enjoy!
50 Good Questions to Ask your Disciple
1. What are you looking forward to?
2. What is the biggest thing you are asking God to build into your life right now?
3. What do you see as some of your strengths? How do you get to use them?
4. What are some of your needs or areas you would like to see God change or continue to
5. What areas in your personal character have you seen God work the most in the past year?
6. How do you feel about your walk with the Lord right now?
7. How do you feel about your ability and desire to study the Bible?
8. How is your prayer life?
9. What are your times with the Lord like? What does your time with Him consist of?
10. How do you honestly feel about evangelism?
11. What is your understanding of spiritual multiplication?
12. What encourages you?
13. What motivates you?
14. Is there anything in your personal life I can help you with? Walk with the Lord?
Ministry skills? Development?
15. How would you describe your relationship with God?
16. What makes you feel the most satisfied?
17. What causes the most stress in your life?
18. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
19. Describe your relationship with your family
20. Where do you see yourself in 5/10 years?
21. What has been the most significant spiritual experience in your life since you became a
22. What has God been teaching you lately?
23. Where are you feeling the greatest spiritual challenge?
24. What are your expectations for discipleship?
25. Do you feel valuable?
26. Do you consider yourself a leader in general? Why or why not?
27. What do you think success looks like?
28. What make you feel loved and accepted?
29. What do you enjoy doing?
30. Do you put more pressure on yourself or others?
31. Are you the type of person who is willing to step out in faith and do what you know you
ought to do even when you don’t feel like it?
32. How are you best motivated?
33. How are you emotionally?
34. How has your self talk/thought been?
35.How do you respond to new people?
36. How have you evidenced good boundaries? Bad boundaries?
37. How are you doing with the good/bad split? How have you shown grace to yourself?
And here's great questions to help in the multiplication process. As you encourage them to start discipling someone else, you can ask them these questions.
About their Disciples:
38. What do you want God to do through you this year?
39. What are you praying for your disciples?
40. How do your disciples respond to new people?
41.What is your disciple’s next step of faith? Do they know what their next step of faith is?
42. How can you motivate your disciples?
43. How can you impart vision?
44. How is your disciple’s heart for the lost?
45. How is your disciple’s involvement in outreach?
46. Can your disciple explain to you the principle of multiplication?
47. How does your disciple feel about discipling someone else? What are their fears?
48. How well is your disciple doing at living out the essentials of the Christian life?
49. What does your disciple need to become a multiplier?
50. What does your disciple need from you?
There are a ton more resources in our store that will hopefully be a blessing to you like an entire women's ministry online course that goes way more in depth in evangelism, discipleship and multiplication. Check it out here.
Check out the Full Discipleship Series
Part 1- How to Find Someone to Disciple You.
Part 2- Where to Start in Discipling Someone Else
Part 3- What is Discipleship and How Do You Do it?
Laura's desire is to point to Jesus and lead people to be in awe of God. She is married and has six kids, two of whom are adopted. Her and her husband have been in full time ministry since 2002. She serves with Master Plan Ministries as the Director of Women's Ministries and has extensive experience leading Bible studies, discipling women and speaking to groups and is the Founder of the internationally popular blog MissionalWomen.com that helps women live on mission for the glory of God. She has written seven books/Bible studies, designed 2 popular ministry tools and has made journals for quiet times for many books of the Bible. You can find her on facebook, twitter, pinterest, youtube, and Instagram.