By Bryan Moak | Vice President of Church Strengthening
Each one reach one - Each one raise one - Each one start one - Each one send one.
This is the call for us as a movement in Converge and each are a critical reminder of how we will build healthy, fruitful churches. One that is a specific passion for me is “Each one raise one.” This phrase reminds me that we are to multiply ourselves in others. We invest in others so that they will grow in their love for Christ and in their development in service for Christ. It is the call to discipleship. There are many strategies that help churches structure programs that help make disciples. Many of these programs are good, and we need systems and structures that help us measure how we’re doing in this area. However, nothing is more powerful in discipleship and leadership development than each of us raising up others through coaching and mentoring. As Dave Ferguson says, we are called to be “Hero Makers.”
As you ponder your role in “Each One Raise One,” you need to understand that you are making an investment in someone. Investing in a coaching/discipleship relationship with someone is costly and it is important that you count the cost before you begin. Following are five reminders as you invest:
1. It takes time.
Coaching/discipling someone means that you need to invest time regularly in them. You are not simply teaching a skill, but rather, building a relationship, and that does not happen quickly.
2. It takes preparation.
Nothing is more frustrating than a coach who isn’t prepared or doesn’t know really where they are taking you. Be specific with what you are trying to accomplish in your time together. What skills are you wanting them to accomplish? What are the specific time frames you are working within?
3. You are raising up a person, not a project.
You need to focus on the strengths and gifts of the person you are discipling. Obviously, you will have certain topics and skills you want that person to develop, but you are raising up someone who is different from you. Ask God to show you the unique wiring of the person you are coaching and build those strengths into them.
4. It takes patience.
You need to allow the person you are raising up to crawl before they can walk. If they are leading in an area of ministry, recognize that as they begin, they will not do it as well as you. You might even need to let them do things poorly as they learn. Evaluate regularly, but be patient. When I think of how I led early on in ministry, I am grateful for the patience of my coaches and leaders. Give that same grace.
5. Not every investment will be a “success.”
Sometimes, we will invest lots of time and preparation in someone, encouraging them in their gifts, giving them opportunities and grace, and they won’t get it. Even Jesus’ investment in his disciples didn’t always end well. We are investing in a spiritual endeavor, and that means there is an enemy prowling. Don’t let a disappointment in a discipleship investment keep you from investing in someone again. Trust that God is the one responsible for the “results” and that He is pleased with your obedient investment.
So, who is your “Each one Raise One"? Who is the Timothy you are investing in? Remember the words of Paul in Ephesians 4:11-12, which says, “It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.” May we increasingly be a movement of churches that are raising up disciples and leaders SO THAT the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach maturity in Him!