Practical Discipleship: A Community Book Project

A few days ago on Twitter, a friend of mine was lamenting how so many (read: all) of the discipleship / church planting books on the market are not practical.  They are theoretical and theological, which aren’t bad attributes, but it would be nice if one of these would get down to the nitty-gritty.  How do you actually make disciples?

When some of you read that sentence, you might think that the answer is self-explanatory.  Others might think that it differs based on your location/context.  Maybe it’s just a “journey that we must travel together” also known as “doing life together” and “living in community.”  These are great buzzwords, and they all have some truth to them – I’m not trying to discount them.

What I would like to do is build a how-to guide for discipleship on this blog.  Something like “Discipleship for Dummies” but without the negative connotation :)  Here’s the rub – I’m not the world’s best disciple-maker.  I’ve been in church my whole life, and been a believer for a long time.  I’ve worked in ministry as a volunteer and full-time, and I’m currently a missionary in Eastern Europe.  None of this makes me an expert at disciple-making.  On top of that, I’m not a great writer!

That’s when I came up with the idea of a Community Book Project.  What does that mean?  Let’s start with the last word.

Project – It will take time and work to do this.  I’m hoping that I can engage people to help me.  If/when the project is completed, then we can look at publishing this thing, but that’s far down the line.

Book – maybe this is too high of an endeavor, but “A Community Pamphlet Project” doesn’t have the same ring to it.  The point isn’t that it will be published or how long it will be, but that we should write and re-write it in a way that has a consistent, logical flow and clearly demonstrates our conclusions.

Community – I’m not going to write this; we are.  I’ll try to draft up some outlines that I’ll post weekly (if we’re lucky), and I’ll count on social media (read: you) to help fill in the gaps.  Let’s get some comments going and fill in things I miss, correct things I’m wrong about, and add enough content for it to be meaningful and helpful to pastors, church planters, small group leaders, everyone.

We will touch on the theory, but each “chapter” should be  best-practices for the given topic.

Each “chapter” will discuss:

  • Why a specific topic is essential to actually making disciples
  • Biblical examples supporting the topic
  • The danger of focusing on this specific topic too much.
  • Practical examples of what this should look like
  • Anything else that we, as a community, come up with!

Well, folks, what do you think?  Can we write this together?  Can we empower people to be better disciple-makers?  Can we be better disciple-makers?


In related news, check out  I think we’ll be able to use some of their stuff, too :)

Posted in Meaning, Thoughtful Thursday