If you have one prototype group or you have a dozen cell groups in your church, the only way to change a consumer culture to a productive, Christ-centered and life-giving culture is through the work of the cross. Christ brings radical, never-go-back change!
Step One: Relational Discipleship begins with Relational Evangelism
Don’t attempt to introduce discipleship to a group of consumers who may see the need for spiritual maturity but have no desire to sacrificially pursue it. A far better approach is to throw them in the deep end (with evangelism) and then throw them a (discipleship) rope!
We recommend using The Blessing List to launch a dialog among members about reaching friends for Christ. Put the blank poster on the wall of the room where your group meets (instructions for use are printed on the back). Then take 15 minutes out of the next nine meetings to discuss The principles of relational evangelism by Randall Neighbour or use our excellent curriculum for relational evangelism, Reaching Outward by Jim Egli or even The Touching Hearts Guidebook by Ralph Neighbour, Jr. (discussed further in step four).
Encourage the members of your group(s) to wait on God to tell them whose name should go on the Blessing List and continue dialoging about the paradigm shift they need to make to see friends and family come to Christ as a result of relational interaction and deep friendship.
The goal in Step One is for a group of believers to see someone they’ve been praying for and spending time with a) come to Christ and b) join their group (not necessarily in this order). When this happens, the members will see the potential of living a life for Christ that includes servanthood and being served by others. Punctuate this by giving those who are instrumental in leading the person to Christ the privilege of water baptizing them.
Here’s some straight talk for you: When someone comes to Christ in one of your groups, you can then begin the discipleship pathway with that new believer and one or two of the people who were instrumental in bringing them to Christ in that one group.*
*Discipleship follows conversion. Don't attempt to implement discipleship in groups that have not won someone to Christ. The members won't see the value in it and the hard work associated with one-to-one discipleship until they have a new Christian in their midst who is asking them challenging questions about the faith.
To learn more about the objective and mechanics of TOUCH’s discipleship pathway to maturity Continue Here