questions are everything
When we intentionally disciple people we need both the art and the science of good questions. The art is discerning where the Holy Spirit might be taking your disciple-making conversation, and the science is having a business card-back-pocket guide to questions that are always worth asking. A good conversation can turn into a great conversation based on one question or a series of questions pertaining to real time discipleship.
When we ask good questions we are simply:
- meeting people where they are truly at
- creating space for self discovery
- not talking down to a person
- able to diagnose where people are at spiritually
- finding out if they are “in” or “out” on following Jesus as Lord (not just Savior)
- allowing people to recognize their potential
- creating space for people to verbalize (out loud) what they are thinking
- opening doors for the Holy Spirit
- probing or raising issues that can lead to transformation
- allowing people to speak to themselves
As a disciple-maker, one of the biggest challenges during Q and A is the A – really listening. Before you ask a question two things need to be at the forefront of your mind: 1) listen to the answer without jumping in with advice, and 2) answer it yourself (for sure in your mind and out loud if necessary).
Below are 20 questions that can lead to intentional discipleship. As always, the goal is never to use a textbook approach to disciple-making or read the questions off of a peice of paper over a cup of coffee. Rather, discern where God wants to challenge those that He has you in relationship with for His purposes and be ready with something to guide a decent conversation.
- What is your biggest challenge right now as a follower of Jesus?
- Where is God really shaping your character right now?
- What spiritual disciplines are you currently focusing on?
- How are you really doing right now? Are you stressed, challenged, overwhelmed, confused, etc? Why?
- (If married) In all honesty, how is your marriage going right now?
- (If married) Are you communicating with your spouse as much as you are with other people, work, church, etc? When was your last date?
- What are some things (maybe good things) in your life that you need to stop doing?
- Do you have more critics or cheerleaders in your life right now? Is that healthy? Why?
- When was the last time you felt the Holy Spirit show up in your life in a unique way? Was it too long ago? What did you learn from that experience? How did it shape you?
- Are you resting regularly / taking the Sabbath idea seriously?
- Who are some non-Christ followers in your life right now? What are you doing to help move them towards the Gospel?
- Do you feel like you’re being a good son/daughter right now? What could you do to honor your mother and father this week?
- What are you learning about yourself right now?
- What are you currently reading these days? What is so interesting about it?
- (If in your small group) To date, what has been your best group time experience? Why? How long ago was that?
- What are some of your deepest prayers right now? Where are you asking God to show up? How can be interceding with you on these things?
- How is your financial life these days? (dangerous for 2009!)
- What are you currently doing to serve people outside of your established friendships? (city/world)
- What temptations are you facing? How are you responding under these pressures?
- How is God revealing himself to your through Scripture? What particular passages are you identifying with recently? Why?