Disciple Making Tools for Spiritual Teenagers

E. Disciple Making Tools for Spiritual Teenagers: Teens need challenging discipleship, peer community and subtle adult supervision. They need to develop maturity, consistency and emotional stability. Teens need to learn their gifts and strengths. Teens need to learn their purpose in life and spiritual calling; it’s like discovering a spiritual career. Teens need to go on safe adventures that challenge them and utilize their spiritual gifts.[1]

F. If differentiation needs are not met, spiritual teenagers will go to another church to meet these needs. The need for peer conformity is a basic motivation behind most receptor growth. Spiritual teens will sometimes switch to another mentor as a part of their individuation. Smaller churches can link together to organize spiritual adventures and rites of passage so that spiritual teenagers can bloom while remaining in their home church.

G. The Spiritual Generation Gap: in our culture, many are biologically adults while emotionally adolescent or younger. Few Christians grow up to become spiritual parents; they prefer an endless adventure without responsibility. Few churches teach spiritual parenting as a responsibility; this is the major obstacle to biblical disciple making. The transition to spiritual parenthood involves moving from an exciting but shallow ministry with many people to calm, deeply nurturing relationships with just a few people who have names.





[1] The quote is a selection from David O. Kueker’s Fuller Seminary Doctor of Ministry project submitted in September, 2007, entitled Diagnosis, Dialogue, and Decision: A Threefold Process of Revitalization For the Illinois Great Rivers Conference.
It is shared here in recognition of its 12th Anniversary along with comments to update and provide perspective on the material. The original project was a Training Manual/Study Guide of three Seminars supported by three chapters of research and an Introduction. The material is available for download at www.disciplewalk.com/Resources.html. In 2009 it was provided for purchase as a softcover book entitled Designing Discipleship Systems: Christian Disciple Making For Any Size Church, Any Theology through CreateSpace.com.

[2][3] [4][5] [6][7] [8]

All Scripture quotations are from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Please review the page How and Why We Use Quotes.

[1]Adventure is essentially a USA adolescent concern. The G12 movement uses two groups to seamlessly transition through spiritual adolescence and form disciples. Cells are for newborns and children, and a G12 group is for those who lead cells, i.e. grandparents, parents and spiritual teenagers. Cf. Joel Comiskey, From Twelve to Three: How to Apply G-12 Principles in Your Church (Houston: Touch Publications, 2002), 35-44. By encouraging rapid cell multiplication, many cells in the G-12 are likely started by spiritual teenagers who require high levels of spiritual parenting support from their G-12 group.

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