by Joel Comiskey
I remember when we first started using our training track (equipping series) in Ecuador. We tried to train the Ecuadorians one-on-one. We thought that was the “right way” to do it. We soon discovered that it wasn’t natural for a group-oriented culture like Ecuador to readily embrace the one-on-one training method. When we started training the Ecuadorians in a group settting, they came alive and were much more teachable.
Am I against one-on-one? No, I think it’s fabulous. What I am saying is that we need to be flexible with regard to how we train people. After all, didn’t Jesus train His disciples in a group setting? Yes, He did focus on Peter, James, and John, but for the most part he trained them together. Here’s what I believe:
Have One Training Track but Many Ways to Teach the One Training Track
I believe a church needs to determine the one equipping process that the entire church will follows, from the new believer (or non-Christian) to leading a cell and beyond. Yet, I also believe a church should exercise great flexibility on how to teach the equipping. Some examples are:
- Sunday school hour. Some churches use the adult Sunday school to teach the different training manuals.
- Before or after the cell group. One option is to ask trainees to come 45 minutes before the cell starts or to stay awhile after the cell to complete one or two lessons.
- Retreat setting. It’s possible to teach one entire equipping book on a Saturday or during a special retreat.
I’ve trained people one-on-one, one-on-two/three/four, a small group setting, or in a large group setting, such as a retreat.
An importnat goal of the cell church is to make sure everyone enters and completes the training. To make this happen, we need to be flexible and offer lots of options to make sure everyone is trained.
What are your thoughts?