Many of you know that I am a leader in a local faith community. I’ve been involved in professional, local church work for most of my life. I started at 17 years old with Campus Life/Youth for Christ. Though not technically a “church” based ministry, it was something that was grounded in essentially the same objectives – encouraging and challenging people to discover what it means to love God, love others and discover a Jesus-following lifestyle. Then at 19 years old, I was hired to work in a local church for the first time. An Episcopalian priest took a risk on a young person like me…the vestry of that congregation paid me $200 a month to be their youth worker. From there it was leadership in a bible camp, then a youth ministry “movement,” then work in local churches…first as a ministry associate and finally as a pastor in what now has totaled seven congregations. In other words, I’ve been around the block.
One of the things that has always interested me is how much GOOD STUFF comes out of the leadership of local churches. You might not know it but some of the best and most applicable “training” materials for local church ministry has NOT been published by a major publishing house. Some leaders have the honor of being published…they are at the right place at the right time (or have the right contacts) to leap into that world. For most though, they simply plug away, day after day, doing their best to be faithful in their local contexts. They don’t dream of national or international fame or exposure…all they want to do is be faithful with the sphere God has entrusted to them.
Well…over the years, I’ve run into many, many of those types of leaders. And we all agreed to do one thing – when we had the opportunity to make “stuff” available, we would. SO, in an effort to do just that, for the sake of my local community and for my friends who are part of my journey, I’m “publishing” some of the discipleship training materials that I use in my local faith community on our church’s website. If you like portions of what you see, copy and paste whatever you want to use. If all you do is read over the materials, great. If you are a growing Jesus follower and want to work the lessons through for your own personal spiritual and disciple formation, great! It is all there for you!
Go to peacemonroe.org – click on the Disciple Training links and all that material is yours. If you know of any other websites or leaders who are sharing their materials, let me know. I love getting new ideas!