A Three Step Discipleship Roadmap

By Andy Lawrenson January 31, 2017

At some point this month, you likely found yourself evaluating the old year and planning for the year ahead. And like me, you probably pondered, “Where are we at, and where are we headed?”

For my part, I’m somewhat frustrated that we have fewer students than in past seasons, but I’m excited that we do have a great student to leader ratio. And rather than enter the New Year with complaints, I’m headed into 2017 saying, “These are the students Jesus has given us, and these are the students we need to be investing in.”

I want discipleship to be the focus of our 2017 ministry year, and here’s my roadmap to get us there:

Clear Vision and Structure

First things first, I want to communicate a clear vision and establish a clear structure for discipleship. My adult volunteers already have a vision for reaching students through evangelism, and now I want to share with them a larger vision that includes growing those students from believers to disciples. I’m also making adjustments to our ministry structure to create an environment that better fosters discipleship, and I’ve already paired each student in our ministry with an adult volunteer for the purpose of intentional one-on-one discipleship relationships. I know that this will require more intentionality on behalf of our team, but I’m excited to strategize ways get the most out of our time with students.

“If I make training my priority, my adult volunteers are more likely to make discipleship their priority.”

Adult Volunteer Training

Next, I want to equip my adult volunteers as disciple-makers. I plan to set aside regular training times to teach through the skills that I’ve found most helpful in the discipleship process. I want to help my adults understand how to discover students at a deeper level. I want to see them teach using their own personal stories, and I want them to feel confident to help students make life applications out of Scripture. If I make training my priority, my adult volunteers are more likely to make discipleship their priority.

Solid Biblical Content

Lastly, I want to teach regularly and repeatedly on what it means to be a disciple of Christ. I’ve identified what it is that I want my students to understand about knowing, following, and sharing Christ, and I’m designing our experiences and events around these themes and principles. My adult volunteers also know this plan, and they’re prepared to reinforce and debrief these lessons during their one-on-one times with students.

I have my roadmap: vision, structure, training, and content. Now my team and I are ready for the hard work of implementation. And we’re grateful that we’re not in the process alone. Jesus says to Peter in Matthew 16:18, “Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it.” We’re building alongside Jesus, the chief builder, and, ultimately, the end results are in his hands.

About the Author

Andy Lawrenson

Andy Lawrenson has been in student ministry for 26 years both as a volunteer and paid staff member.  Andy and his wife, Misha, have been married for 28 years and have three children: a son in middle school and twin eight-year-olds, a boy and girl. Andy loves getting together with other youth pastors to talk about…  Read More