Adopt, Adapt, Abandon

Jeff Tunnell

Developing our training track has been a training process in itself.  At the onset of transitioning to cell-based ministry we adopted the baseball diamond materials from Bethany Cell Church Network.   We did not yet understand the changing nature of a training track and when BCCN began altering their materials to meet their own needs, it left us frustrated.  Becoming dependent upon someone else’s publishing (we were too small to produce our own) left us feeling vulnerable to their decisions.  Promoting this training track with zeal, we were left holding booklets that could no longer be supported or purchased.  Using someone else’s materials that were not designed to flex with our situation was hindering us.

Then we began using various components for each level of the training track.  These were not produced or published by one company or ministry, just specialized pieces we decided would fit each step in our training.  We made certain that these would remain available for a longer period of time in order to not make the same mistake.  This was adapting and it felt better and left us more in control of our journey.  Having books completed through one-on-one discipleship, complemented by weekend Encounter retreats gave us flexibility in applying the training track.  But it was cumbersome and not giving the results we desired.

Recently we abandoned that array of components and are now implementing Joel Comiskey’s 5-book equipping series.  This brings us back to the adopt part of the cycle.  As Joel pointed out in yesterday’s blog, whatever you use should be biblical and reflect your cell church philosophy.  We want to streamline the training, make it consistent from step-to-step and measurable across the board.  Someday we may produce our own, but for now we are excited to use a proven process of discipleship from a trusted source.

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