[Jim Yost, a missionary from the Philippines associated with Cityteam International, spoke in San Jose last Saturday (January 21st) at an event hosted by The Gathering by The Bay. The following are notes from Greg Hosclaw as posted on the d-church mailing list.]
Jim freely states, that this is his model, not THE model. But it is working well with them. He wanted to step back and speak of the DNA, not so much the methods. Methods may be more culturally specific, but DNA of a believers community may be more transferrable. He also said that his church is known for studying the Word and Obeying it (newspaper people asked the members and that is what they declared).
My take away is that many times we measure the wrong things. If someone says how do you make a cake, and you open an oven and say ‘1 cake’ that doesn’t help. That is counting the output, but we need the recipe, to count the inputs (cup of sugar, 3 cups flour, a bar of chocolate, …).
Jim’s challenge to really measure against the right things. Not the number of disciples, but the things or actions that lead to disciples!
What is the DNA you hope to have in your church or fellowship? What do you want to be known for?
And then, what actions are you checking that lead to the DNA happening?
Jim gave an overview on the ‘movement’ as he calls it, of multiplying home groups that regularly gathering on Sundays. His main statement is that they don’t make converts, they “make disciples who make disciples who make disciples”. Currently, he has 11th generation home groups (1 group has planted not 10 groups, but 10 generations of groups!).
Jim’s main point is that you need to measure right things, as you go about making disciples, but many times we just measure or encourage the wrong things.
Jim spoke about the 5 point DNA in his movement, along with the measurements they use to focus on that DNA, which leads to disciple making.
1) Freely received, freely give (Matt 10:8)
The main point is that what you receive you look to give away. Someone is discipling you, so you go share the same with another. Jim examples were drugs addicts that got clean, should help clean up another. You hear and live a truth of God, go share it with your family.
Measurement point: Name the 1 to 5 people you knowingly are discipling (pouring into).
2) If you love God, you talk about Him
Jim point is that we talk lovingly about our spouse, family and the things important to us, so we should be sharing God stories throughout the week. Church gatherings, small groups don’t count!
Measurement point: 5 times a week share a God story or your testimony with others.
3) Heart for the Lost
If we are becoming like God, then we will have compassion for the world. And that starts with prayer & petition.
Measurement point: Name the 5 unbelievers you regular pray for (at least 1 per day, get a new name once they are saved).
4) Rapid Obedience
Following the Lord, and responding to the Holy Spirit isn’t a complex process. You hear Him, you follow Him. You read a good word, you try to live it that week. Jim said they have a rule, they don’t teach a new thing, until you have tried to live (really live) the old thing (I think this applies to encouraging/prophetic words as well). Jesus told them to teach and obey. The epistle of James says the same thing.
Main supplement: Praise success, don’t focus on failure. If a man committed to not get drunk, praise him for the 5 sober days, not condemn them for the 2 drunk nights. These are Jim’s points real life examples.
Second Note by Jim: This is less a works thing, and really an intimacy thing. Jesus said if we love him, we will walk in ways (in obedience). And He always asks us to do things that draw us nearer to Him.
Measurement point: At the end of each small group, each person has to give a way they feel the scripture and the Holy Spirit is leading them into obedience. At the beginning of the next week, each gives a report on how they did (all the praises and confessions wrapped together)!
5) Discover Bible Study
Everything revolves around each believer knowing they can learn and understand the Bible on their own. Gifted teachers are actually not allowed to really attend the small group. They teach in other places, but each believe must trust they themselves can learn the Bible, and so the small groups teaching element is simple Bible discover.
Measurement point: Each person must verbalize what they learned, and how their live will be shaped by it this week.