“Come, follow me!” With these words, Jesus invited the first disciples on a journey of transformation. Revolutionizing their conception of God, prayer, religion, and spirituality, Jesus led this motley group on a three-year crash course in living. He then instructed them to “disciple” others. This training of disciples, now called discipleship, is the next step after conversion in the forming of a Biblical Christian.
We have developed G.R.O.W. (God Reshaping Our Ways) Curriculum as an aid in this discipleship process. Our purpose is to help new disciples grow spiritually. We have chosen thirteen foundational scripture passages on topics such as prayer, the Bible, life in the Spirit, and freedom from sin. While some discipleship books use a hodge-podge of scriptures on every topic, we have chosen to work through one extended passage in each chapter. This is an intentional decision. We believe the best way to understand any verse is to read it within the context it was written. Our approach also allows the reader to learn to understand and draw from a passage of scripture on his or her own. Scriptures were selected for their practical insights, clarity, and history of helpfulness within the church.
Each chapter is divided into four major sections:
ENGAGING THE LEARNER: Our intention in this section is to draw the reader into the primary issue(s) for that week. A variety of writing styles are employed including fictional accounts, true stories, personal anecdotes, and short essays. This section outlines the need or problem which the lesson addresses.
EXPLORING THE LESSON: Working from scripture, the second section gives the Biblical answers to the issues outlined in Engaging the Learner. Our commitment is to the authority of Scripture in all areas of spiritual need. Exploring Scripture is a necessity if we are to grow as disciples.
ENHANCING OUR LIVES: The third section strives to force the reader to evaluate himself or herself in the targeted areas. The provided exercises are designed to help implement the teachings into daily life.
OUTLINE FOR SMALL GROUP DISCUSSION OR PERSONAL REFLECTION: This final section is a collection of questions and exercises designed to help either the small group or the individual learner review and further implement that week’s lesson. While every question can be adapted for either individual or group use, questions specifically designed for small groups are marked with an asterisk (*).
While we have tried to make the curriculum friendly for either individual or group study, if possible we encourage you to find at least one person to complete this study with. Christianity is lived out with other people—the Church. Likewise, discipleship is a group activity. So, if you are working through this study alone, take the time to find an established Christian to partner with you. His or her prayer and encouragement will be an invaluable part of this process.
These next months will be full of changes, growth, spiritual highs, and, occasionally, frustration. Every disciple, beginning with the original twelve, knows only too well these experiences! Know with God’s grace and the prayers and presence of other Christians, Christ will shape you as He has all those that have gone before. Thank you to allowing us to be a part of this exciting time in your spiritual life!
Lyle Pointer and Jason Hubbert
1 - All scripture is quoted from the New International Version © 1973, 1984 unless otherwise noted.