I’m halfway through Thom S. Ranier and Eric Geiger’s ‘Simple Church: Returning to God’s Process for Discipleship‘. It’s been a helpful read so far in just helping one to think about processes in a simple, straight forward way. I’ve been a little disappointed that they haven’t really, up until this point, pointed to a more organic way of doing church – I suppose there are aspects of it in the book. Overall the authors seemed more intent on helping pastors and church workers uncomplicate and streamline the complicated structures their churches and ministries can get into. Their four steps to going ‘simple’ and designing a discipleship process are: Clarity – Movement – Alignment – Focus
Clarity: The ability of the process to be communicated and understood by the people.
Movement: The sequential steps in the process that cause people to move to greater areas of commitment. (They suggest that this step is normally the most difficult to understand).
Alignment: The arrangement of all ministries and staff around the same simple process.
Focus: The commitment to abandon everything that falls outside of the simple ministry process. (This is the most difficult to implement).
There are many helpful suggestions throughout the book but if you were looking for a more missional/organic approach to discipleship then it probably shouldn’t be top of your list.