A Beyond team worker writes: “A few weeks ago, I did some training in East Asia. The 16 trainees were leaders of various discovery bible groups started over the past year. They trained leaders and co-leaders, and helped these groups become stable. But found that the groups were not reaching out into their communities. They still weren’t reaching non-believers. They called us and asked for help. We trained their leaders in a simple process which we’ve found, helps ordinary believers, to start and multiply new discovery groups.
Traditional methods often focus on evangelism. We focus on inviting people into a process in which they can gradually learn about God, as they study through the scriptures, including stories from Creation, all the way to Christ. Each story asks them, to repeat the story several times, to put it into their own words, then to answer what the story teaches them about God, Man, and what they should change in their lives, as a result of the story. In the midst of learning about God, people make the decision to follow Christ. It’s not forced, it’s organic.
We took three days to train the group how to share their daily testimonies of how God has been at work in their lives during the previous days and weeks, and to engage non-believers in discussion. For instance, a Discovery Group member may tell a story of how God helped them at work, then ask a question, “Do you ever think that there’s a God that cares for us in such a way?” If people seem interested, we start new discovery group with them. It turns evangelism into a non-forced, natural, organic conversation.
As a part of the training, we provide time for the trainees to train each other, in each lesson. We’ve found this gives members the confidence to go out and train others as well. We’ve found that discipleship movements grow faster, as we train more believers to be involved. To help them out, we produce a bookmark, with images that show them the basics of the training. They can copy the bookmark and give it to anyone to do the same.
We gave the trainees a challenge, each night, to prayer walk their neighborhoods, and to share stories of God’s grace in their lives, with at least three people, and to follow up with a question. As trainers, despite the language difficulties, we committed to the homework as well. Surprisingly, most of the trainees shared three times, and many found the process so enjoyable, they shared with as many as five!
Less than a week later, we’ve found that many of the trainees have already trained someone else, to do the same! Many are continuing to share daily, and there’s already the beginning of a new discovery group as a result!”
Join us in praying that these groups multiply into movements.