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Spiritual Parenting Is Simple Discipleship

“... but we were gentle among you, like a mother caring for her little children” (1 Thessalonians 2:7).

I have three children. After nearly a quarter century raising kids, I have concluded that raising children is a lot like Jesus' process of making disciples – unconditional love and acceptance, equipping, training, doing life together. I am there 24/7. We have a relationship and I am intentional in my efforts.

Core discipleship is spiritual discipleship and founded in the power of three:
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12).

3 People + 3 Months = Lifelong Relationships
Core is simple, Biblical, and life-changing. I’ve talked with hundreds of pastors around the world. It takes about 3 minutes for them to "catch" these 3 steps:
  1. Ask the Lord to put on your heart 2-3 others who will meet 90 minutes each week to grow together to become dedicated disciples of Christ;
  2. Focus on God’s love, His Word, relationship, trust, transparency, mutual responsibility, accountability, and when our Lord directs, release those individuals to begin their own core groups;
  3. See step 1.
Simple Discipleship

A Core Discipleship Group is made up of 3 and no more than 4 believers of the same gender who meet weekly for an extended time to grow in relationship with God and each other. It is spiritual parenting.

• Consists of 3 and no more than 4 people
• Same gender
• Meets weekly for an extended time
• Purpose is to grow in relationship with God and each other
• Mutual transparency, trust, encouragement, instruction, accountability
• Each person desires to be formed, conformed, and transformed through Biblical knowledge/understanding/application, growing in Christ-like character, and evidenced by transformed lives
• The Bible is absolutely essential
• The group is facilitated by - but not dominated by - a more spiritually-mature believer (2 Tim. 2:2)
• The groups create an environment of life-transformation and multiplication by the power of the Holy Spirit (Gal. 4:19; Rom. 12:1-2; Eph. 4:11-16)
• There must be equality, independence for each person to hear God's Word and the Holy Spirit, and open and honest dialogue
• Produce disciples who can then make disciples
• Each person in a Core Group agrees and allows others in the Group to hold them accountable
• Christ-like growth – transformation - is the ultimate goal of each person in a Core Group
• Core discipleship resources are available to you as free tools or you can use resources provided by your church (the majority of Core resources are free)

Simple. Biblical. Life-changing.

Discover the power of Jesus' Core Discipleship Process:

Or come visit our FaceBook Community: CoreDiscipleship

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Comment by Doug Morrell on November 19, 2010 at 1:33pm
Dave, thanks much. God has very graciously allowed us a very open door into Africa and the Asian communities. Blessings!
Comment by Dave Shepardson on November 19, 2010 at 1:03pm
Doug, I appreciate your ministry & your resources so much. I use a number of your resources, most recently sending some to Thika, Kenya with a missionary that we're helping start a new discipleship based church there. Thanks brother, you are making a difference in how we make disciples.
Pastor Dave,
Calvary Chapel Nuevo/Word-By-Mail


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