How to Start and Multiply Simple Churches Through
T4T = Training for Trainers
By Floyd McClung
Below are a few foundational discipleship practices that when followed will produce a simple five-step process for making disciples (and stating simple churches). Each step in the process has a priority that overflows into practical application, which together serves as a discipleship track for bringing new disciples to faith and helping them make more disciples. We call this overall process of training people to be disciple makers, “T4T”, or Training for Trainers. 2 Timothy 2:2 says we are to “train faithful people who will train others also”. We call this process “pray, meet, make, gather, multiply”. Or to give it a more poetic spin, Entreat, Engage, Equip, Encounter, Expand
PRAY TO THE Lord of the Harvest
- To do prayer walking on site to gain insight
- To hear directions from the Lord in prayer
- To receive revelation from God about specific people
- To keep our hearts strong when we feel weak
- To gain courage and boldness when we feel fearful
- To receive God’s love for people who don’t know Jesus by asking for it
- Pray “The Prayer of Three” for three people who don’t know Jesus – every day!
Principle Prayer keeps us in touch with God’s heart, God’s power and God’s plans
Prayer is conversing with God, and when we spend time in God’s presence and receive God’s power, we are equipped to win the lost. Prayer is partnering with God to change people’s lives.
“One day Jesus told his disciples a story to illustrate their need for constant prayer and to show them that they must never give up. 2 “There was a judge in a certain city,” he said, “who was a godless man with great contempt for everyone. 3 A widow of that city came to him repeatedly, appealing for justice against someone who had harmed her. 4 The judge ignored her for a while, but eventually she wore him out. ‘I fear neither God nor man,’ he said to himself, 5 ‘but this woman is driving me crazy. I’m going to see that she gets justice, because she is wearing me out with her constant requests!’” 6 Then the Lord said, “Learn a lesson from this evil judge. 7 Even he rendered a just decision in the end, so don’t you think God will surely give justice to his chosen people who plead with him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? 8 I tell you, he will grant justice to them quickly! But when I, the Son of Man, return, how many will I find who have faith?” Luke 18:1-8 NLT
Priority Entreat the Father and the Lord of the Harvest, the Holy Spirit, to give you a passion to reach people with the good news of Jesus.
Make a list of 30-50 friends, relatives, co-workers, fellow students, etc., and then from that list, ask the Lord to show you three people you should focus your prayers on. Ask god daily for them to be saved. Ask for opportunities for you to share your story, and then the God Story. Make an appointment to spend time with them hearing their story, then follow up and share your story. If they are spiritually hungry, start meeting with them regularly to read a few verses from the Gospels and discuss them together. Begin a “D-Group )go to www.floydandsally.com and then the “resources” tab to learn how to start and facilitate a D-Group. It’s simple and doable!).
Practice BE-Committed to prayer!
Use a prayer room/chapel if there is one available, get up an hour early to pray, fast one meal or one day a week, go for prayer walks where you live and where you want to reach people, and join in prayer with a few others who will agree together to see a breakthrough. There is no significant movement of people coming to Christ that is not been preceded by at least 1-2 hours a day in concentrated prayer.
Reach out to PEOPLE WHO DON’T KNOW JESUS, ESPECIALLY THOSE YOU PRAY “THE PRAYER OF THREE” FOR
Defined Engage people through sharing your story and sharing the gospel
- To connect with people who don’t know Jesus
- To involve someone in an activity or to become involved or take part in an activity that results in people becoming disciples of Jesus
- To engage in conversation, to hold someone’s attention or to win the trust of somebody
- To find the person of peace who will open more doors to the gospel
The Principle The 99 & the 1
God places a high value on lost people. He taught us not to spend all our time and energy with the 99, but to go after the lost one.
Now the tax collectors and “sinners” were all gathering around to hear him. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” Then Jesus told them this parable: “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. - Luke 15:1-7
Priority Engage your culture and community; meet people who are not Christ-followers and spend time building friendships with them. Respond to those who are open and want to learn more. Because people are valuable to God, we must intentionally and strategically engage our culture and community. Focus on those you know who are not following Jesus. Pray for them. Build relationship with them. Hear their story. Share your story of how you came to faith in Jesus.
Practice BE-Connected with people
BE-Connected to the world to connect them to God, in sincere friendship through
- Join sports clubs, serve your community, get to know neighbors, hang out with friends
- Make 3 appointments: to hear a friends life story, to share your faith story, and to start a seekers Bible study for those who are open
EQUIP PEOPLE one-to-one and in small, seekers bibles
studies (called d-groups)
Defined To equip is to disciple a person through friendship, one-to-one appointments and seekers Bible studies, or “D-Groups”
- To equip is to start or set up one-to-one meetings or a D-Group with the intention of helping a person become a fully devoted follower of Jesus, a disciple
- To equip is to train the new disciple to disciple others also. This is the heart of the T-4-T process, training people from the beginning to be obedient disciple makers who know how to share their story of coming to Christ, how to share the gospel, and how to disciple someone who comes to faith in Christ
Principle Foundations First
As we help a person progress toward obedience and being a disciple maker themselves, we must help them establish strong spiritual foundations in their lives including changing one’s world view, sinful habits of behavior, and wrong values That happens through helping people learn to obey truth as revealed in the Bible.
“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” - Matthew 7:24-27
Priority Establish Spiritual Foundations
Because foundations are essential for spiritual growth, we must help our disciples establish solid biblical foundations at the start of their spiritual journey. Those foundations include reviewing and discussing the five truths found in the God Story:
- Creation – the character and nature of God as loving, holy creator
- Rebellion – the nature of sin and spiritual warfare, beginning with Satan’s rebellion in heaven and continuing with Adam and Eve’s rebellion in the garden
- Sacrifice – what God has done to forgive our rebellion and sin, starting with “pictures” of sacrifice in the Old Testament, leading to Jesus sacrifice on the cross, and faith in his sacrifice for us
- Return – the importance of repentance and living a lifestyle of obedience based on God’s love and grace
- Commission – the wonderful truth that we are all commission to go and tell others about Jesus and to make disciples, including how to do that practically
Practical BE-Open to learn and grow and share with others in a D-Group
BE-Open is all about becoming all God wants you to BE. To BE-Open is to be dependent
on each person having the right foundations laid in their lives.
TO EMPOWER is to encourage New believers to grow spiritually with others in COMMUNITY. this happens THROUGH EXPERIENCING SIMPLE CHURCH AND IN worshipping God in BIG GROUP CELEBRATIONS WITH OTHER BELIEVERS
Defined “Empower” through enjoying community and experiencing the presence and love of God in His people, the church
- To “empower” a new believer is to provide a person with what is needed to grow as a member of God’s family, the church
- The goal of empowering people is so they can function as a believer-priest in community with others who love Jesus. It is to help a person learn what simple church is and how to actively grow with other followers of Jesus in community through transparency, praying for others, serving others, and discovering their unique spiritual gifts and calling.
Principle The Myth of Maturity – Why We Need Each Other
Spiritual progress, not perfection, qualifies a person to minister to others. Every believer is called to be a minister and that means being part of a spiritual family, a local church community. We empower people by teaching them that every believer is a minister, that all have a role to play, and breaking free of dependence on hierarchical forms of church leadership. We empower by encouraging respect for spiritual leaders but also by helping people take responsibility for their own spiritual growth.
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 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. - Ephesians 4:11-13
Priority Empower All Believers to Minister and to Be Ministered To
Because every member is called to be a minister, we must equip all believers with basic ministry skills. God’s Word is the ultimate equipping tool. Hearing God speak through the Word is crucial for growth. Modeling how to give and receive from one another is foundational for growing healthy, self-governing, self-reproducing church communities.
Practical BE-Empowered! – By Practicing the “One Another’s” of the New Testament
BE-Empowered happens when believers can pray out loud, confess their sins and faults to one another, bear one another’s burdens, and encourage one another.
To expand AND MULTIPLY SIMPLE CHURCHES, WE FOLLOW THE”MAWL” COACHING MODEL. MAWL STANDS FOR: Model, assist, watch, then leave - “ Mawl”. churches can multiply and expand through local leaders taking the lead. this is the heart of T4T – to train every person who is willing to train others. 2 timothy 2:2
Defined “Expand” through multiplying leaders who train leaders who train leaders
- To give people the skills and know-how and to help them gain confidence that they can be a disciple making leader who trains others to be disciple making leaders
- To give somebody a greater sense of confidence or self-esteem by providing coaching, mentoring and training as needed.
Principle The Miracle of Multiplication
Every disciple should make disciples, and every disciple can lead simple churches that multiply by making more disciples
“And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others.” - 2 Timothy 2:2
Priority Equip and Empower all Disciples to Make Disciples
Because Jesus expects all disciples to make disciples, we must not only equip them, but also empower them to make disciples.
Practical BE-Expanders of the Kingdom! - “where disciples are multiplied”
Lifestyle of fruitfulness gives disciples the opportunity to receive continued training and mentoring on being and making disciples.
|Entreat||Prayer Changes Things||Luke 18:1-8||Entreat the Father to Prepare Peoples Hearts for the Seed of the Gospel||BE-Committed|
|Engage||99 &1||Luke 15:1-7, 10:1-10||Engage the Culture and Community – Look for the Person of Peace||BE-Connected|
|Equip||Foundations First||Matthew 7:24-27||Equip Believers With Right Foundations||BE-Equipped|
|Empower||The Myth of Maturity||Ephesians 4:11-13||Empower All Believers to Minister and to Be Ministered To||BE-Empowered|
|Expand||The Miracle of Multiplication||2 Timothy 2:2||Empower All Disciples to Make Disciples||BE-Expanded|