Posts Tagged disciple
At Catalyst One Day, Pastor Andy Stanley explained how North Point Community Church‘s Sunday School curriculum focused on hammering home a small set of basic truths at each stage of life. Surprisingly, perhaps due to the decentralized nature of North Point’s ministries, I couldn’t find them written down in one place. Here’s what I’ve been able to compile.
We have decided that our primary goal in Waumba Land is to introduce our kids to their heavenly Father. That’s why everything that we teach can be boiled down to the following Three Basic Truths:
- God made me – CREATOR
- God loves me – FATHER
- Jesus wants to be my friend forever – FRIEND
We want our kids to know:
1. I need to make the wise choice. [Wisdom]
2. I can trust God no matter what. [Faith]
3. I should treat others the way I want to be treated. [Friendship]
1) Authentic Faith
You have to believe and trust in Jesus Christ as your personal savior if you want to go to heaven. But faith in Christ also allows you to live on earth in a daily relationship with a heavenly Father who loves you unconditionally. As an all-knowing and all-powerful father, you can trust him to lead you the right way.
2) Spiritual Priorities
God designed you to have a relationship with him. Your intimacy with him will provide the foundation you need to face whatever life can possibly throw at you. His friendship with you provides ultimate fulfillment and security.
3) Moral Boundaries
Purity paves the way to intimacy. The most important thing you can do is to establish specific guidelines in your dating life. You need to learn how to protect your body and emotions by honoring God’s plan for sex and morality.
4) Meaningful Friendships
Your friends determine the direction and quality of your life. If you walk with the wise, you grow wise. Spending time with the right kind of friends definitely helps you grow in a positive and healthy direction. Scripture also teaches that the companion of fools will suffer harm. Learn to build healthy friendships and avoid unhealthy friends.
5) Wise Choices
In light of your past experiences, present circumstances, and future hopes and dreams, you need to ask yourself, “”What is the wise thing to do?”" Good decision-making is more than simply choosing between right and wrong. It is the skill of applying scriptural principles so you can make smart choices that will protect your future.
6) Others First
Scripture teaches that God has created you to do good works and that he has given you unique gifts and talents. Discovering those gifts and using them to make investments in others is the key to lifelong fulfillment.
7) God-Given Authority
To have authority, you must be under authority. The parents, teachers, and leaders that God has placed in your life are there to guide you and guard your potential. The greatest lesson you can learn is to respect and honor those who are in authority.
In Which We Abide Fruitfully Instead of Vegetating Slothfully
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” — Matthew 5:6
Sloth may seem like an archaic sin in our busy modern world, but our frenzied activity is itself a sign of sloth, which can be defined as a lack of vigor in pursuing God’s name — His character and purposes. In fact, the self-centered pursuit of our own “name” — especially under the guise of religion — is actually the worst kind of sloth! (cf. Matthew 23)
The antidote is to empty ourselves of worldly pursuits so that we become truly hungry for faith, hope, and love. Only when we abandon slothfully seeking our own comfort — which merely results in restlessness — can we experience the divine dynamism and peace that comes from abiding in Him…
- theological education
- character formation
- skill development
We are over half-way through, so Part B will be ending soon — and Part C starts a week or two after that, so I need to get ready!
Here is the initial outline I used:
- Personal Bible Study: Understanding Scripture for ourselves
- Warfare Prayer: How to shake the heavens.
- The Slow Fast: Emptying ourselves to be filled.
- Memorizing the Word: Sharpening the Sword for battle.
- Daily Journaling: Tracking God’s activity over time.
- Cultivating Spiritual Gifts: For what has God made us?
- Failing Courageously: Taking risks, making mistakes, and learning from them.
- Good Things in Small Groups: Building missional communities.
- Constructive Criticism: ‘Tis as important to receive as to give
- Counseling and Discipleship: Helping people reflect God’s glory and grace.
- Friendship Evangelism: How to get Jesus into people’s hearts.
- Public Speaking: Communicating clearly and concisely.
Here’s the list the church originally proposed:
- Daily Journaling
- Devotional Prayer & Bible Study
- Bible Memorization
- Relating to Spiritual Authority
- Developing Spiritual Gifts
- Spiritual Warfare
- Dealing with Failure
- Sharing Your Faith
- Public Speaking
- Leading a Small Group
The challenge is to find a book or two to use as background reading that covers (or at least is relevant to) most of these topics. Any suggestions from my loyal readers?
Read more for a review of some possibilities, after the break…
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In Which We Become the Church, As We Grow Into Christ Our Head Via His Gifts
Continuing the theme of Sanctification, we explore how we are discipled into the name of Christ through His body — the Father’s principle vehicle for forming His Kingdom, by His Spirit. Specifically, we see how the fact that we serve One God requires us to worship Him as One Church.
[Note: I am now using the New King James Version for my interlinear; hopefully this will increase the readability.]
In Which Jesus Sends the Comforter, and We Are Convicted By Him
This week we move from the Father and the Son to the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit. This also continues our theme of God restoring His Image by saving us from our rebellion. And as usual, there is a heavy price to be paid…
In Which We Receive the Gospel, And Are Saved By It
Our series so far — indeed, the first half of human history — is but a prelude to the coming of Jesus Christ. In Christ we have the word of God made flesh, the perfect revelation of God’s character, a tangible representative of the Trinity, and a reminder of what we were created to be.
For the third part of my trilogy on leadership development, I want to focus on practical skills. Here’s my short list (twelve, again) of the key abilities I believe leaders need to cultivate. Anything you would add or subtract?
Even though I haven’t posted for a while, I’ve been thinking a lot about Comprehensive Theological Education. In particular, I’ve been trying to identify the key “success factors” necessary to improve upon traditional methods. Here’s my current list. Any thing you’d like to add, Gentle Reader?