I was recently at a gathering of disciple-making leaders, and one of the leaders said this, “Many of our churches are doing addition, when we need to be thinking about multiplication when it comes to making disciples.” What he was saying is that we add people to our church, but we don’t expect them to reproduce themselves. Why? Do we communicate the expectation of reproduction to the people in our churches?

For many I believe this is a foreign concept, and if we want to see healthy churches it is something that needs to change. Jesus had expectations of His disciples, and reproduction was one of them. Jesus clearly told the disciples to go and make more disciples (Matthew 28:18-20).

I will say that I’ve been encouraged by the number of churches that are starting to recognize the need for a change, and because of this I’m starting to get calls asking me to come and help them develop an intentional disciple-making process. Most of these churches begin their disciple-making process in groups, and this is an effective (and biblical way) to do this, but I’d like to share with you why I believe churches should also implement a one-on-one disciple-making process as well.

1. The Friendship Factor

Let’s be honest, following Christ’s example can be hard at times, and there is something about knowing that you’ve got a friend by your side that is comforting. When you continually meet with the person you are discipling, that person becomes like a friend to you.

2. Individual Care

This is one key advantage over groups. When you’re meeting one-on-one with another believer, you can provide a level of personal care that is especially needed by a new believer. This can be a great help when you’re on a new journey.

3. Flexible schedule

When you’re meeting with a group you expect there will be times when someone in the group will be sick, have a sick child, or another commitment that makes them miss the meeting, and when this happens the rest of the group continues to meet. When you’re meeting one-on-one, you can decide together on another date that works and meet then.

Do you have a one-on-one discipleship strategy at your church?

I’ve given you a few reasons why I believe you should have one, and I’ll talk more about this in part two. As always, if there is anyway I can help you with this or another area of church ministry, please let me know. Until next time… Blessings!