For the next five weeks, Mentoring Mondays will focus on each of the five stages of spiritual growth and how to help others (and ourselves) go deeper in our relationship with God. Much of the content regarding spiritual stages has been gleaned from Real Life Discipleship by Jim Putnam, so if you want to know more, I commend this resource to you.

Warnings About Classifying People

  • We cannot know what stage someone is at or help them transition to another stage if we are not spending time with them one-on-one. To walk alongside someone, to shepherd them well, and to aid them in their spiritual growth necessitates more than simply seeing them 1-2 hours a week during small group meetings.

  • Identifying someone's spiritual stage is meant to be a tool to identify where they are so we can help them. Therefore, we need to be careful not to let stages define people. Most of us do not like for people to try to pin us down and say that we are a certain way (even if what they are saying is true). These descriptors are simply handles us for us to grab on to as we disciple people.

  • People do not always fit into our neat little boxes, and they can demonstrate characteristics of several stages.

  • We must allow for people to change and not view them as they once were.

  • People can regress.

So as we spend the next couple of Mondays looking at the five different stages, I challenge you to ask yourself: (1) Which spiritual stage are you? (2) Who are you discipling? (3) What spiritual stage are they? (4) How can you help them transition to the next stage? (5) In what areas do you need to grow in order to be able to walk alongside someone in this process?

Join us next Monday as we look at the first spiritual stage involving those who are spiritually dead.