Disciple Daily recently returned from Guatemala. We were part of a five-agency team assembled by Shepherds’ Support, led by Rick and Diana Lowe. Oher team members were Jim and Arline Parris (Paraclete), Michael and Victoria Loudermilk (Wayside Chapel), and a seven-member team of worship leaders from Hoboken Grace Church in New Jersey. Together we provided a staff training retreat for the Potter’s House Association, based in Guatemala City. The Potter’s House Association was established 31 years ago to address the eight dimensions of poverty afflicting the people living in the largest dump community of Central America. Addressing spiritual poverty is at the center of all that the PHA does. Those they work with are known to the PHA staff as “treasures.” Many of the current staff members were once “treasures” themselves.
One hundred people attended this weeklong retreat. The role of Disciple Daily was to provide training on how to use oral Bible storytelling as a strategy for evangelism and disciple-making among the treasures of Guatemala. Together, we explored the stories of Creation, Adam & Eve, and The Fall in the gardenlike setting of Antigua. The retreat location provided an ideal backdrop for learning this material. After hearing Arlie and Noemí Francis of Disciple Daily tell each story for the first time, small groups discussed four questions:
What grabbed your attention from this story?
What does this story tell you about God?
What does this story tell you about mankind?
From this story, what is God telling you to think or do differently?
Following each discussion time, individuals shared their answers with the entire group. Some brand new observations were shared, ideas that the staff had never thought about previously. All 100 attendees actively participated in a community-wide exploration of Genesis 1 – 3. This portion of Scripture contains three foundational Bible accounts that set the stage for the rest of God’s grand story. The last step of our daily training was for the entire group to tell the story together. This built understanding and unity among the whole group!
The leaders of Potter’s House had asked us to bring them a strategy that they could use with people who can’t or don’t read the Bible on their own. Watching the growing excitement among everyone was energizing. Clearly, God was at work among us. He was the Trainer. We were all His disciples.
“This is simple and effective. Our community can do it.” – Estuardo
“The insights of our people were profound.” – Hector
“I was blown away!” – Michael
“Thank You. Thank You. Thank you!” – Margarita
One exercise demonstrated how this strategy could be used publically in the communities the PHA serves. Storytelling is a method that was used by Jesus as He taught His first disciples in the towns and villages of the Galilee. Jesus trained out in the open, where the people of the area could observe what He was doing. As His disciples were being taught, crowds gathered around them to watch and listen. They became part of Jesus’s small group. This gave opportunities for Jesus to disciple the whole community while he focused on His closest friends. Everyone was able to participate!
Many of you support the work of Disciple Daily with your time, talent, and treasure. We are grateful for your support that impacted so many in Guatemala last week and in the days to come. Thank you for your faithful investment in our ministry. As every prayer was concluded we were reminded, “Cristo vive!”
Making disciples of Jesus through the art of orderly Bible storytelling is simple to learn. It is a biblically proven approach that everyone can do. Disciple Daily is here to help you get started. Just ask!