The Second Level of Discipleship

The Second Level of Discipleship

 Yesterday we looked at the first level of discipleship – a new believer or someone who has not been grounded in her faith. The goal of this first level is to ground her and give her a foundation for her faith.

The second level of discipleship is a maturing believer who wants to grow deeper in his/her walk with Christ. 

They know the basics, they are grounded, and they want to grow deeper.

The goal: Grow them.

Help them grow toward spiritual maturity.

 In my post, Will You Disciple Me, we looked at a definition of making disciples: “Making disciples” is developing men and women into committed, lifelong learners and followers of Jesus Christ. You are helping them grow toward spiritual maturity through discipleship.

When I disciple women at this level, I ask them what their spiritual needs are and how I can help them develop in a certain area spiritually.

The Method:

I may study a book with her, go through a Bible study together, work through a passage with her, or answer questions she has about the Bible or God’s will or theology. I often take her through worksheets I have developed specifically for an area of growth. Sometimes we spend time discussing her ministry and the challenges she faces.

Some examples of areas we may work on together:

  • Sharing her faith, sharing her testimony, or leading evangelistic Bible studies
  • Learning how to study the Bible and teach
  • Talking through doctrinal issues or tough questions
  • Helping her determine her SHAPE (spiritual gifts, heart, abilities, personality and experiences) and discern where she can serve most effectively in her SHAPE
  • Managing her time and setting realistic goals
  • Dealing with spiritual warfare
  • Making wise decisions
  • Developing her personal mission statement
  • Helping her trace God’s hand through her life story

When I disciple someone at this level, my time with her is usually a balance between going through something structured and spending time talking through issues and questions. I “tailor-make” what I do with her, depending on what her needs are.

In the coming months, I will be sharing some of the things I use with women at this level and will post the resources on the resource page, available for you to download for free.

Question for you: Do you have to have a natural affinity for someone in order to disciple him/her? What are your thoughts?

  1. Good morning Crickett. I’m really enjoying these posts. Life is finally slowing a bit so I can comment. I had to look up affinity. It means “a natural liking or a close resemblance ” . I would answer both yes and no. When I’m deciding whether or not to invest in a woman in this way, first I begin with prayer. I ask God to show me women who are faithful, available, teachable. As Women approach me, I try to determine if they are living a life of obedience to the Word of God. Obedience is the litmus test. So once I meet with her initially, usually God shows us areas of affinity. But I’ve had times that the Lord has impressed on me “disciple her” and I have thought “but I don’t even know her”. Those mentoring friendships have been rich.

  2. Heather, you are right on. Obedience is key. There have been times I have discipled someone I wasn’t naturally drawn to, but I knew God was telling me “you need to do this.” And as we spent time together, the relationship grew. So yes, it can be done, even if there is not a natural affinity for that person. However, surveys show that the effectiveness of an individual’s discipleship ministry is in direct proportion to the quality of relationships he has been able to establish with his men/women. I have found it is much easier to disciple someone I just naturally am drawn to; but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to disciple someone we’re not drawn to.
    Thanks for your comment! It’s great to hear from you.

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