When it comes to entering into a personal discipleship relationship with someone else, there are a few things to keep in mind:
1. Pray for the person you’ll disciple.
Sometimes the person we have in mind isn’t the person God is calling us to disciple! Be sure to discern whom you’re called to disciple through prayer and by using the Depth Chart.
2. Don’t be afraid to go deep with just two or three people.
If you could spend only a few hours a month on something to advance the Kingdom of God, pouring your life into the lives of others is the most impactful thing you could do. You must use your time wisely. Don’t be afraid that you’re not doing enough; remember, Jesus went deep with just a few men, and the Church is still bearing fruit from it thousands of years later!
3. The frequency of discipleship meetings might be different.
College students may think they’re busy, but they’ve got nothing on working adults. Be patient and trust that God can work even through a monthly discipleship meeting. Of course, the more frequent the meetings, the better — but you might need to get creative and flexible about how you both make time. Heading to the gym? Go together! Need groceries? Stock up on those veggies and talk about Jesus at the same time. However you make time to meet will be worth it.
4. Make prayer the cornerstone of your discipleship time.
If you can give anything to the disciples with whom you’re working, give them an experience of prayer. Going through Ignatian meditations, teaching them Lectio Divina, and so on are the things that will truly transform their lives — and yours, too.
5. Give your disciples vision for discipleship.
From the start, it is important for your disciples to understand what discipleship is. You are both walking on a journey toward Christ together; the best way to do it is to continue asking what God wants of their life, and to encourage them to do the same in prayer and in guiding others. This will be the center of your time together. It’s not about you and your disciple; it’s about your disciple and Jesus.
To do this, you can use the Discipleship Road Map, too!
6. Listen to Pope Francis.
“Never forget! For disciples of Jesus, yesterday and today, the only authority is the authority of service; the only power is the power of the Cross.” Serving others and embracing the cross will lead to bearing fruit in your discipleship relationship.