Effective Discipleship Tools | Part One

A Deeper Desire

“I just wish there were a curriculum out there that really communicated the power of the gospel to kids.” There are many times I’ve heard statements like this—from mothers, from children’s program leaders, from school teachers; there is a desire for discipleship tools that go deeper than the status quo of entertainment-focused VBS or weekly kids’ programs.

If you’re reading this post, chances are you can identify with these thoughts. You also desire something that kids could really understand—something that would sink deep into their souls and change who they are, not just what they do; something that would help them see and understand the beauty of the gospel and give them a passion to know Jesus.

This desire is what got Heroic Life Discipleship started. Our church leadership asked us to produce a solid, biblically based children’s program that would effectively disciple kids in the gospel. But what does this practically look like for us?

I’d like to answer that question here by introducing you to our brand new curriculum.

Mindsets and Perspectives

Here are some overarching mindsets that have guided our curriculum development:

  • Our foundation is the Word of God. We are passionate about communicating truth effectively and accurately.
  • We’ve built our tools to be simple and intuitive, yet deep and powerful.
  • Our curriculum is structured to be flexible. Although our material was created for a weekly children’s program, it is easily adaptable for use by churches, families, orphanages, or other groups. See what folks from these different contexts have already said about Heroic Life Discipleship HERE.
  • Although we’re not focused on entertaining kids with our curriculum, we do want them to be fully engaged, and we have designed our teaching materials to facilitate that.
  • We want to come alongside you in your battle for the hearts and souls of your children and students. Our goal isn’t to replace you as a teacher or parent; our goal is to place tools in your hands that will be powerful and effective in transforming kids’ lives.
  • This certainly isn’t a complete list. For more about our mindsets on children’s ministry, sign up for our EMAIL LIST and receive our free ebook, The Common Mindset and the Truth.

The Curriculum from a Bird’s-Eye View

What do you do when you write a children’s curriculum from the ground up? That’s precisely what we asked ourselves when this all began. The answer we came to: why not present the gospel the way Scripture does? We decided to teach through the Bible chronologically from Genesis to Revelation.

Our curriculum is divided into eight semesters—fourteen lessons each—that work through God’s Word, giving a clear and applicable presentation of the gospel. Our first semester establishes foundations of the nature of God and of Scripture, and the remaining seven semesters feature stories from the Bible cover to cover. Here’s the quick semester outline:

Semester 1 – Foundations: The Nature of God and His Word – Explore the nature of God and why we can trust the Bible.

Semester 2 – The Source of Life: Creation and God’s People Set Apart – Learn God’s purpose for man as you study stories from creation through Jacob’s return to the Promised Land (Genesis 1-33).

Semester 3 – Faithful Father: Israel in Egypt and the Wilderness – See God’s character revealed through stories of His interaction with His people, from Joseph to Korah’s Rebellion (Genesis 34 – Numbers 29).

Semester 4 – Trust and Triumph: Israel in the Promised Land – Witness the victory that comes through faith in a powerful and loving God as you hear about the time from Joshua leading Israel into the Promised Land through the beginning of Samuel’s ministry (Numbers 22 – 1 Samuel 7).

Semester 5 – The Rightful Ruler: Israel’s First Kings – See God as the one King to whom all must bow as you dig into stories from King Saul through King Solomon (1 Samuel 8 – 1 Kings 12).

Semester 6 – Unstoppable God: Kingdoms, Prophets, & Captivity – Study the lives of the kings of Judah and Israel and of the prophets, and learn how God’s purposes and plans cannot be stopped (1-2 Kings, 1-2 Chronicles, the Prophets).

Semester 7 – Our Sure Salvation: The Life of Christ – Watch in excitement as the long-expected Messiah comes to His people bringing hope and salvation (the Gospels).

Semester 8 – The Exchanged Life: The Early Church and Christ’s Return – Learn of God’s plan for His church as you explore stories from Acts through Revelation.

As we have taught through all these semesters at our own church ministry and as other churches and ministries have begun to use our materials, we’ve seen the vision and desires met that the Lord has given.

We’ve seen children deeply understand truth and practically apply it. We’ve seen them grow in loving and desiring to know God and His Word. And we’ve seen teachers thrive as they’ve used our simple and intuitive structure.

How does it all work practically, and what are the specific parts of an individual lesson? Stay tuned for part two next Sunday!

Michael has served as Director of Heroic Life Discipleship since the ministry began in 2012. He is passionate about effective discipleship, and desires to inspire others to seek after Christ with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength. Michael enjoys reading, travel, music, volleyball, ice hockey, and hiking.

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