What you have learned and observed in my life, deposit into the lives of others, who will be able to give this life-giving knowledge to others as well.  2 Timothy 2:2 OGV

Eighty percent. That’s right – 80 percent!

My wife and I are a team. She is often unnoticed. I preach from the podium and she takes photographs for the ministry. I’m more visible while she is more helpful.

My sermons are soon forgotten, while her photographs last forever.

We both believe in one-on-one discipleship. I have discipled several people a year for 49 years and she has discipled several a year for 47 years. She even discipled her sorority sisters at Bowling Green University before we were married.

This ministry of discipling others is the legacy that we will leave when transitioning to heaven.

Barbara and I get asked, “How is retirement?” GRRRHHHHRRR!

I don’t like the word “retirement.” My wife and I are doing what we have always done. We disciple. I’ve just completed a great discipling experience with a local pharmacist. My wife is discipling a Pokémon-Go friend who she also recently baptized.

Eighty percent. That’s right – 80 percent!

Of those who decide to follow Jesus, 80 percent walk away from faithfulness within three months. This is the unmentionable secret of Christianity around the world today.

A journalist in the 1800’s coined the phrase “a mile wide and an inch deep.” He was referring to the Platte River. This phrase has been used often to describe the depth of maturity in Christian believers. Churches have buildings, staff, lights, cameras, food pantries, community programs – all needed and all serving.

But with 80 percent walking away from faithfulness in the first three months and the apt description of “a mile wide and inch deep” describing the 20 percent remaining – is it any wonder that the church has little impact today?

For the 44 years of our marriage, my wife and I have discipled others to love Jesus.

The content that we developed is called First Steps Conversations. I wrote, she helped with editing, long conversations on ideas, along with graphics for printing the books.

Discipling! This is what we are both continuing to do now.

Eighty percent walking away can be reversed to 80 percent staying faithful. It takes content, connections, and culture.

Content:  New believers need the right foundation in the first three months. Many older followers never built the correct foundation. Both new and renewed believers need the rock of one-on-one discipleship.

Connections:  Scientific research shows the debilitating impact of lacking or deficient human contact in infants. Babies can’t grow into a healthy conversant relationship without parents. New Christians will not learn to hear God’s Spirit without discipleship.

Culture:  Discipleship happens best amidst others discipling. Disciples who disciple disciples to disciple disciples. Culture is the testimony, and the encouragement of others is necessary.

What is the strategy my wife and I are using now? Building a group of 100 discipling believers who will commit to:

  1. Praying and finding someone to disciple…
  2. Discipling one person per year…
  3. For the rest of their lives!

Discipleship can change our community – 100 to 200 to 400 t0 800 t0 1600 to 3200 to 6400 to 12,800 to 25,600 to 51,200 to 102,400. Our community, completely discipled in 10 years.

Would you join us?