by Bill Mowry www.alongsider.com The adventure of the alongsider begins with a good question. Have you ever noticed how God consistently engages His creation through questions? “Where are you Adam?” “Have you considered my servant Job?” “Whom shall I send?” When God asks questions, He’s not simply collecting information (after all, He is omniscient). I believe His questions are intended to draw His creation into a relationship where reflection and discovery takes place. Jesus understood the power of a good question. Our Lord exasperated his followers and critics by refusing to give packaged answers to their challenges. Instead, He would respond… Read moreStart with a Question
by Bill Mowry Can you picture Jesus having a water fight with the disciples as they traveled the Sea of Galilee? Do you feel theologically safe imagining the Son of God hanging out with his friends and having fun? Elton Trueblood, in his book The Humor of Christ, writes: “Anyone who reads the Gospels with a relative freedom from presuppositions [would] expect to see that Christ laughed, and that He expected others to laugh . . . . A misguided piety has made us fear that the acceptance of His obvious wit and humor would somehow be mildly blasphemous and… Read moreWho are you hanging out with?
By Bill Mowry All of us have a favorite Old Testament personality. One of my favorites is the leader and nation-builder, Joshua. Joshua’s impact was so significant that the author of Judges wrote, “The people served the Lord throughout the lifetime of Joshua.” (Judges 1:7) But then comes one of the saddest verses in the Bible. When Joshua and his contemporaries passed away, “another generation grew up , who knew neither the Lord nor what he had done for Israel” (Judges 2:10). What a sad commentary on a group of leaders. How did this happen? A clue is found in… Read moreWhat’s Missing?
by Bill Mowry In his presentation on disciple-making, Pastor Paul was challenged by a friend in the audience. “I could never make disciples,” the friend said. “I’m not a good public teacher like you.” Paul turned the question back to the audience, “How many of you are good at public speaking?” About four people raised their hands. Then he asked,“How many of you could befriend someone and then come alongside and read the Bible with them?” Nearly all the hands went up. What made the difference? The second question painted a picture of disciple-making that many in the audience felt… Read moreAlongsiders Hang New Pictures
Do you want to help guide people to experience a deep, ongoing connection with Jesus? Does the idea of equipping individuals to intentionally pass along their faith to others inspire and engage you? To help you engage those in your natural relational networks, The Navigators invite you to attend a Life-on-Life™ Discipleship Training Conference on November 9 and 10 in Hamilton, ON. This practical and interactive event will give you the opportunity to connect with fellow church leaders and give you the confidence to guide people to experience a deep, ongoing connection with Jesus and equip them to pass their… Read moreLife-on-Life Discipleship Training Conference
by Margaret Fitzwater Chris, the pastor of a church Roy and I were working with, frequently challenged the congregation to become disciple makers. But only a few people were catching the vision. Even for these precious few it was hard, because they were busy with all the studies and programs the church offered for their growth. Chris always felt that he was discipling because he loved to teach. The sermons were rich with history, and the classes he and the staff and volunteers taught were filled with content. But most of the learning stayed inside the building and inside people’s… Read moreHow to Create a Disciple-Making Church
by Al Engler When we moved into our home, we learned that our next-door neighbor was hosting an “open table” every Thursday evening at her place. We changed our schedule so that we would be free to attend these dinner parties. What did we do there? We engaged in delightful and quality conversations. We met people we otherwise wouldn’t have met. Over the years, we’ve seen people come to faith from those dinners. A few of the people we met there are currently reading the Bible with us. More than that, we love the people we’ve gotten to know as… Read moreHearts Afire
When I was a young mom, a friend opened up my dusty bible and showed me that what Jesus had done on the cross two thousand years earlier was for me. Until that time, I hadn’t understood that heaven was a promise from God, guaranteed by His Son’s death. It took me two years to accept that eternal life was so simple and to invite Jesus into my life. I soon discovered, however, that although receiving Christ was simple, living His new way of life was not! Much of my spiritual foundation had been tradition, religion, and misguided thinking. I… Read moreHeart of a Disciple
How to Raise Up Disciples Who Will Flourish, With or Without You By Christy Tennant As I’ve prepared for a two month international trip this summer, I’ve been conscious of the potential impact of my absence on the five women I disciple. We’ve been meeting weekly for more than a year. I’ve tried to be one of their strongest cheerleaders as they struggle and grow. Knowing that Jesus is their perfect shepherd, encourager, and intercessor certainly gives me peace about leaving them for a season. However, I am now more aware than before that part of my role as a… Read moreOne to One
by Jan Johnson I used to have dazzling quiet times. I sat on my bed, holding my four-part prayer notebook as if it were a cherished artifact. Pulling back the tab marked “adoration,” I peered at a list of forty words that described God and picked three to praise God for. Moving on to the tab marked “confession,” I mulled over another forty-word list of faults, especially those I’d underlined in red: laziness and grouchiness. Racing on to “thanksgiving,” I skimmed a list of twenty items I felt thankful for, including friends, relatives, books, and—to be especially spiritual—God Himself. At… Read moreThe Day My Quiet Time Died