Discipling Like Jesus… part 2

So… this is the first time I’ve tried doing a blog in two parts – but I’m thinking there might be some of you who’d enjoy getting to experience first hand a taste of what I do when I’m meeting with someone one on one helping her learn how to disciple others.  I only wish I could be sitting on the couch with you doing this in person!  :0)

To get the full benefit of this, if you haven’t yet read and done part one, go check it out and after reading through Luke 11:1-13 create a chart and answer the three questions:

  1. What can you learn about discipling from this interaction between Jesus and His disciples?
  2. For each observation, consider:  Why do you think Jesus did this?
  3. How could you apply this when you are discipling the women you meet with?

There really is a ton to be learned from this passage!   Here are a few things that stood out to me!


Note this entire discourse begins with Jesus praying.  I cannot stress how vital modeling is in discipleship – it’s not just what you say!  What you do has a much greater impact!  Now Jesus wasn’t doing this just to model for the disciples, but as he prayed, did it ever capture their attention!  As we look at the Scriptures we see it was a way of life for him. Don’t just meet one on one with someone, give them opportunity to see you live out your relationship with the Lord in your daily life.


And note this discussion was prompted by the disciples.  They observed Jesus doing this as well as John teaching his disciples and they were curious.  People learn things much better when it’s something they are interested in and want to learn.  That’s not to say there aren’t times when it’s important to cover things they may not have thought about before.  But when possible, taking time to discover what someone is curious about and focusing there can really increase the impact of the lesson.


Note how Jesus begins giving them something simple and organized, a model they can easily remember. This is so impactful.  This doesn’t include everything Jesus ever taught on prayer.  He didn’t feel like he had to cram all that could be learned into one lesson!  But is it ever a great way to start!

This is why I love to use the Look, Listen, Live it out model for teaching someone how to have a quiet time.  Not only is it easy for them to remember the next day, but it’s also easy for them to remember so they can pass it on to someone else!

There’s a fascinating book called Making Things Stick that explores how to present information in ways people will remember.  This book stresses, keeping things simple and organized can really help!  As my friend Dave Hawes says, “The more organized something is, the more passonable it is.”  and not just from you to her, but also for her to pass onto others!!!

For example I was doing a sexual purity video and had nine practical suggestions for how people who are struggling can experience victory in this area of life.  Who can remember nine suggestions?!  So I asked the Lord if He’d give me an idea for how to communicate this in a way that would stick and He brought to mind the three parts of the briar:  roots, stem, and flower.  So using a large picture of a briar, I shared three suggestions for each of the three parts!  Did that ever stick!  (no pun intended! :0)


Note Luke 11 wasn’t the only time the Lord taught the disciples about prayer.  In Matthew 6:5-14 we see the Lord teaching the disciples to pray using this model again.  Repetition is so valuable!  Don’t just teach something once and then move on, assuming she got it.  Periodically coming back to go over something, teaching it in a bit of a different way can be so helpful!

Note in Luke 11 Jesus only teaches part of this model for prayer – in Matthew 6 we see an expanded version.  But in Luke 11 Jesus spends more time talking about the parts He does present.


So first he teaches them part of a simple model, then he takes time to help them understand.  He starts with the whole, then breaks it down focusing on one key part at a time.

And He seeks to help the disciples understand the character of who they are praying too as He does this.  Just as in the Bible the main character is always God, so in your one on ones let Him be the focus.

And it’s important the one you’re meeting with understands what’s not being said, as well as what’s said.  You want to try and anticipate ways the enemy might try to twist what you’re teaching and get her off track.  For example, after Jesus instructs the disciples, “ask and it will be given to you,” He goes on to explain God only gives good gifts.  So when you ask you will receive something, and it will be good!  But you may not get exactly what you’re asking for!

Do you see how the enemy can have a heyday with this if someone is expecting to always get exactly what she asks for?


And then Jesus ends highlighting the best thing they can ever ask for and be given!  Be sure to end your explanation highlighting what is most important and giving her ideas for how she can practically apply what you’ve just taught her in her daily life.

Note Jesus doesn’t exhaust them with a long dissertation on this subject.  He briefly teaches them a simple model.  Then explains what they need to know to get started and be motivated to start.

Now we don’t know what happened next.  Scripture just gives us brief snapshots, so I’m going to take the liberty to add on two more things that I’ve observed from other passages of Scripture that help me finish well when I’m meeting with someone.

7.   DO IT WITH THEM!   (Luke 9:13-17)

I have found it so helpful to not just tell people how to do something, but when I take time during our time together to do it with them – that’s when it really sticks!  This provides a great launch for getting them started!

For example, when sharing the Lord’s prayer with someone, I don’t just tell them about it, I pray through it with them!  And not rotely – remember it’s a model, not just a verbatim prayer to pray!   And as we pray through it, we take turns, with me going first, praying one phrase at a time, expanding it a bit to share what’s on our hearts that relates to each phrase.

8.  GIVE AN ASSIGNMENT  (Mark 6:7)

And then I end with an assignment such as, try praying through this model once a day for the next week (which is something I seek to do at the start of every day in my own life, right after I wake up each morning before I get out of bed and truly have found to be life changing!).

This is where the rubber meets the road – why you’re sharing this with them in the first place… so they’ll do it!

Incorporating anything new into one’s life rarely just happens!  That’s why discipleship is so helpful in the first place!  Be sure you consider not just what you’re going to tell them, but how to intentionally spur them on towards love and good deeds!

And as you do, can following Jesus’ example ever help!

The Power of Processing

I’ve never been much of a scrapbooker.  I made one when Jim and I were dating, but that was years before Creative Memories and it was a rather simple affair.  But one of the girls I was meeting with loved to do this!  And as I was praying, asking the Lord what He’d like for us to do during our next time together, He gave me the idea to take her to a scrapbooking store and let her pick out materials to make one page summarizing the key thing the Lord recently was teaching her.  Little did I realize the treasure we were both in for!

She was soooo excited!  We started our time praying asking the Lord to guide us, to bring to mind what He wanted us focusing on and to help us create a picture that represented this.  It turned out most of our time that week was used just selecting supplies so I asked if she’d complete her page during the coming week and then share it with me at our next one on one and I decided I’d create one too.

Now at first I was bummed that our entire time was taken up by the selection of materials – what kind of one on one was this?  But you know, it was amazing how we both experienced the Lord even through the process of deciding what to use as well as when we had to think through the lessons we’d been learning to select one.  And then as we started putting our pages together it was like the Lord was right there with us, not only helping us create a picture of what He’d been teaching us, but the actual process of creating helped us further process and internalize that lesson even more!  And what a powerful time we experienced the next week when we shared our creations!

Shortly after this a friend shared with me how he’d been reading all the verses in the Bible that talk about remembering – and realized how incredibly key it is to take time for this.

Numbers 15:40 ESV

So you shall remember and do all my commandments, and be holy to your God.

Deuteronomy 8:2 ESV

And you shall remember the whole way that the LORD your God has led you these forty years in the wilderness, that he might humble you, testing you to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not.

Deuteronomy 8:18 ESV

You shall remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth, that he may confirm his covenant that he swore to your fathers, as it is this day.

Deuteronomy 16:12 ESV

You shall remember that you were a slave in Egypt; and you shall be careful to observe these statutes.

Deuteronomy 32:7 ESV

Remember the days of old; consider the years of many generations; ask your father, and he will show you, your elders, and they will tell you.

(And that’s but a taste!  The  word “remember” occurs 162 times in the ESV Bible!)  

Prior to this when I thought about spending time one on one with someone I was always forward focused – what’s going to help her move forward and press on in her walk with God?  But this experience really highlighted for me how vital it is we periodically take time to intentionally remember, and process deeper what the Lord is teaching us.  The irony is, taking time to look back, process and remember, really can spur us on even more!

Fast forward a few years to our sabbatical last summer.  I asked the Lord if He’d give me a creative way to remember the lessons He’d be teaching me throughout it.  That’s when He led me to art journaling.  Again I was blown away at how taking time to create a picture of what He’s teaching me helps me learn on a deeper level – and sometimes even figure out what’s going on in my heart!

And you know, this takes place in a format I actually enjoy looking back through and praying through – which only serves to help me remember even more!  (I’m a very messy writer and an external processor who writes volumes every day just to think and pray – I would never want to go back and read all of that!  But I love to look at these pictures!)**

Recently a friend asked if her Bible study could come over and art journal with me.  We paired up and shared a quiet time in Psalm 139 and then took time to create an art journal page illustrating what the Lord laid on our hearts. It was so precious to hear each woman share and “see” what she was learning!  I cannot recommend highly enough doing this!

So now, when I meet one on one with someone I will periodically take time for us to actively, creatively process what the Lord’s been teaching us.  At the end of a semester, the end of the year, the end of a Bible study ~ these are all great times to do this.

In fact, at the end of one summer training program after we’d inductively studied the book of Genesis, as a way of further processing what we’d learned I encouraged the students to go back and draw a quick sketch or do word art, featuring on an index card the main thing from each chapter that stood out to them.  Talk about a fun and insightful way to review and help summarize when finishing a Bible study!

As it says in Ecclesiastes 7:8, “The end of a matter is better than it’s beginning…”  Don’t miss out on the best part by rushing onto the next thing!  Taking time to further process and remember can enrich and deepen your relationship with the Lord, and with those you are discipling!

(**NOTE:  you can find examples of this art journaling at http://www.restfulheart.wordpress.com ~ I put this together for friends who wanted to “see” what I was doing during my sabbatical last year :0)