Discipleship is an essential part of the Christian life. But what is it? Learn about why discipleship is vital, and how it looks in YWAM.
3 Core Aspects of Discipleship
Discipleship is at the core of what we do at YWAM Asheville. Let's look at some core aspects of discipleship and how it looks here.
3 Core Aspects of Discipleship
If you’re like me, you may have heard this word used commonly but had no real understanding of what this looks like practically. Until my YWAM Discipleship Training School, I never understood what a disciple really was. A disciple is simply a devoted follower of Jesus. Discipleship is the practice of becoming more like Jesus in your day-to-day life. Jesus tells his disciples in Matthew 28 to “make disciples of all nations”…teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you”. A core aspect of discipleship is believing the whole truth of the Bible. This causes us to walk in total obedience because we are fully convinced that the Great Commission and bringing the Kingdom of God wherever we go are our greatest assignments as believers. Another key aspect of discipleship is meeting regularly with a “disciple” or mentor in individual or small group settings. They are not therapists but leaders that remain fully committed to our growth. They can hold us accountable while simultaneously calling us higher as Christ’s followers. Discipleship allows us to be the hands and feet of Jesus to emulate Jesus to a world that has never met him. Discipleship not only requires total commitment but full transparency from both sides. Our mentors can only provide insight if they know the truth about our struggles. Again, their job is not to counsel us like traditional therapists but to continually direct us to God. I believe that God’s design for a discipleship relationship is meant to be a safe place to share each other’s burdens, be encouraged in the Word, and intercede for one another as we commit to following Jesus wholeheartedly.
Benefits of discipleship
By operating in full transparency with your mentor or discipleship group, you have the unique opportunity to be fully known and fully loved for all you are. Our willingness to commit to the discipleship journey reflects our heart posture of humility or lack thereof. Jesus was the most humble person to walk this earth and has demonstrated to us how to live an abundant life by following his instructions. Discipleship exists to meet our need to function in a community. God outlined the nature of the human condition: it is not good for man to be alone. As Christ followers, we require more community than a Sunday service provides. Discipleship creates space for us to be vulnerable with our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ to exhort and equip others with the word of God. The ultimate goal of discipleship is to become more like Christ, which is undoubtedly the greatest benefit.
These are 3 core aspects of discipleship:
Transparency with God and man.
Humility to be known for who you are, who you are not, and who you are becoming.
And a community around you to provide the feedback and encouragement you need to sustain a lifelong apprenticeship of Christ. All 3 of these were abundantly present during my DTS.
Personal DTS experience/What DTS meant to me
When I entered my YWAM Asheville DTS, I had no idea that God would completely change my worldview. Pridefully, I believed I knew everything there was to know about God. Our first Bible topic focused on the “Character and Nature of God” and exposed how little I knew. Through discipleship, I opened my mind and heart to the expansiveness of God that I had been unaware of before. It took transparency, humility, and community for me to grow in understanding God’s character and nature…and that was just week 1!
Why you should do a DTS
You may have asked yourself this question, “How do I know if a Youth With A Mission DTS is my next step?” Here are some key indicators that confirm whether a YWAM Discipleship Training School is for you:
- You have a desire to learn biblical truths for yourself. You do not want to rely solely on the words you’ve heard spoken in church environments or opinions from family and friends. You are hungry to learn and potentially unlearn what the Bible says about who Jesus is!
- You are searching for a gap year or a season devoted to Jesus that will allow you to strengthen your relationship with Him.
- You are looking to acquire practical tools to share your faith. You want a better understanding of the Gospel message and how to communicate it clearly to people wherever you go!
If any of these areas reflect your current season, this is your chance to experience God and share what you have learned with others!
It is an honor and a gift to walk alongside others to help them fully operate in their original design as individuals. Proverbs 27:17 tells us that “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another”. It is a privilege to champion our brothers and sisters in Christ to pursue purity and humility to experience Jesus fully wholeheartedly. A discipleship training school is a great first introduction to experiencing discipleship alongside other passionate young adults. You have the unique experience of solidifying core beliefs about the Bible while practically living out our assignment to bring the message of Jesus to every sphere of society. Are you ready to get started?