Discipleship is important at CrossBridge! It’s an important process for every follower of Jesus that provides intimate friendships, an environment of accountability, and most importantly, it cultivates a life rooted deeply in God’s Word.
The main environment to grow spiritually is to participate in a yearly Discipleship Group, or a “D-Group.” A D-Group is a gender-specific, closed group of 3-5 believers who meet together weekly for the purpose of accelerated spiritual transformation. A person joins the D-Group by invitation only, with most D-Groups being formed out of relationships in a Life Group.
What is a D-Group?
A D-Group is gender-specific closed group of 3 to 5 believers (including the leader) who meet together weekly for the purpose of accelerated spiritual transformation. A person joins the D-Group by invitation only.
While Small Group Bible Study groups exist for the purposes of community growth and fellowship, they have an underlying additional purpose (or they should have): evangelism. Small Group Bible Study is designed to reach lost people by getting them involved in the group. A D-Group, on the other hand, consists of believers who desire a deeper walk with Christ. It is not evangelistic in its form or function, but in its fruit: it makes disciples who will then go on to make more disciples.
The format of a D-Group is not one of a teacher-student, but a roundtable discussion. A teacher shares information, while a disciple-leader shares life; a teacher aims for the head, while a disciple-leader aims for the heart; a teacher measures knowledge, while a disciple-leader measures faith; a teacher is an authority, while a disciple-leader is a servant; and a teacher says, ‘Listen to me,’ while a disciple-leader says, ‘Follow me.’” This blueprint, sketched by Jesus Christ through His personal example, is how discipleship is accomplished in the lives of believers, and, ultimately, within the local church. When this plan is followed, those involved will participate in three dynamics that result in growth in their personal lives, as well as in the Kingdom: community, accountability, and multiplication.
How do I find a D-Group?
Small Group Bible Study groups, which form out of the Worship Gathering, are the “fishing ponds” for D-Groups. As people form friendships and bonds in small groups, handfuls of them will decide to take the next step and begin a discipleship journey together in a D-Group.
If you would like to be in a D-Group, the first step on the pathway is to join a Small Group Bible Study. If you are currently in a Group and desire to be in a D-Group, talk to your Life Group leader or contact us here.
How many people should be in the group?
Because accountability works well in a smaller setting, the ideal size of a disciple-making group is 3 to 5 – you and 2 to 4 other people. We recommend that you do not have more than 5, and remember that a one-on-one relationship is not ideal.
Where do groups meet?
We encourage d-groups to find a meeting place away from the church. Restaurants, coffee shops, bookstores, diners, and homes are all good options. Meeting outside the church in the community encourages your group to publicize their faith, teaching them it is okay to read the Bible at a restaurant or pray in public. Be sure to select a place that is convenient to all group members.
How often do groups meet?
Ideally, d-groups meet once a week for about an hour to an hour and a half. You can meet more frequently, but it is important that you meet at least once a week. The key principle of a d-group is that it’s life-on-life. It is important to remember that discipleship is about the relationship between you and your group members, not about checking a requirement box. Disciple-making is a way of life, not a program.
Is there an attendance requirement?
Yes, and it is not negotiable. The first time d-groups meet, the leaders shares the disciple-making covenant. Since the group is going to spend their lives together for the next twelve to eighteen months, they should all know the level of commitment. Some people have said after the initial meeting, “Uh, this isn’t really for me. I’m not interested.” That’s okay, too.