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Disciple Making and Obedience

Photo of Stan RoddaStan Rodda | Bio

Stan Rodda

Stan Rodda is a disciple maker and campus pastor at New Life Christian Church, a multi-site church in the suburbs of Washington, DC. Stan relaunched his campus in 2014 and is now leading an effort to create a movement of disciple makers in Western Prince William County. His wife, Misty, is his biggest fan and supporter with his Goldendoodle, Gwenny, a close second. Together Stan and Misty have three children; Grant, Ashton and Avary. When Stan isn't discussing disciple making or ministry, you can find him riding open roads on his Harley and cheering on his favorite football teams, the Kansas City Chiefs and Nebraska Cornhuskers.

I remember those early days when my children started to feed themselves. It was an awesome day and it felt like I had gained so much of my freedom back. When they were babies, my wife and I would feed them one bite at a time. If you’re a parent, you remember those days or are still living them. But as they gain some independence and start feeding themselves, it feels like you’re getting your life back.

The natural growth path for a human is to grow to be able to self-sustain. To feed and care for themselves. This also works when you think about your kids growing and finally being able to take themselves to the bathroom or take a shower. These are little moments of progress that all parents celebrate as their children grow and mature.

And that’s what we want to experience as disciple makers also.

We want to experience the joy of seeing someone we have discipled taking steps of obedience. Feeding themselves for the first time. Taking a risk like a first walking step. Learning how to clean themselves up after they have fallen down. That’s where the real joy is in disciple making. In order to get there, we have to help our disciples know how to measure and track their own obedience. The sooner they can do that, the sooner we will see them growing and maturing.

One tool that is helpful in measuring obedience is called “The Wheel”:

The Wheel

“The Wheel” focuses on four key areas of a disciple’s life to help them learn how to walk in daily obedience. The four key areas are:

  1. Daily Prayer
  2. Daily Scripture
  3. Intentional Fellowship
  4. Gospel Shares
How It Works

When I am obedient in all four of these areas, my discipleship tire is full. I roll along down the highway with no issues. When one of them is a little off, I end up with a flat or out of balance. Either way, I’m not operating at full capacity.

So imagine that these four areas are supporting the overall health and vibrance of your life as a disciple and that of someone you are discipling. As a disciple I want to live these core areas out daily. Then I want to train someone I am discipling to do the same. That’s where the “Thermostat” comes in:

The Thermostat

Technically, there are four thermostats, each one with seven dashes representing the days of the week. If I read the Bible 5 days this week, then I circle or put a mark that shows I was in Scripture 5 days in the past week. Then I measure the other three areas. What I come out with is either a nice full tire, or a flat.

Please note: the purpose of this tool is not to be legalistic in our approach to discipleship. It is meant to be a helpful tool for new disciples to learn how to walk in daily obedience. As a disciple maker, it is so encouraging and exciting when you meet with someone you are leading and they have used this tool to show you progress they are making in daily obedience.

So use the Wheel and Thermostat as you make disciples. It helps to lead others into steps of obedience and also trains them to disciple the next generation in daily obedience.

Let’s take Kingdom territory!

The natural growth path for a human is to grow to be able to self-sustain.

(For more from Stan, check out www.fourgen.org.)