Disciple-Making is the Goal;
Mentoring is the Process.
The 222 Plan: Questions & Answers
By William Owens, Th.D.
Q 1. What is unique about the 222 Plan in making disciples?
A 1. The 222 Plan focuses on the one-on-one mentoring process. The disciple is coached to reproduce himself in another disciple.
Q 2. What is the key to success with the 222 Plan?
A 2. There are two issues:
1. the character of the person being mentored and
2. the degree of accountability exercised. The disciple being mentored must be prayerfully chosen. He must also be held to a very strict accounting for his assignment. The degree of his/her faithfulness to assignments largely determines his/her success as a disciple and later a mentor.
Q 3. How can I be sure that I am qualified to be a mentor?
A 3. If you have a measure of the following characteristics, you are qualified to be a mentor.
1. You should have a desire to be obedient to God.
2. You should have a desire to see believers live disciplined and holy lives.
3.You must be willing to practice what you ask of others.
4. You are qualified when you find someone willing to make the journey with you.
Q 4. How does one know when a person is ready to be mentored?
A 4. People are ready to be mentored when you detect in them the characteristics found in the answer to question three above. Note: There are also three other indicators: Watch for people who show themselves to be faithful, available, and teachable. You should also note that a person you mentor must have respect for you and believe that you are genuine in your desire to grow as a Christian.
Q 5. How do I invite a person to join me in the "222 Plan" process?
First, make sure you have the Lord's clearance to begin the mentoring process. (Ask God to reveal any hindrance that may keep you from being a successful mentor. When God puts a finger on a hindrance, be quick to respond. Deal with the offense immediately. Ask God about the person you would like to ask to join you.)
Secondly, make an appointment with the prospective disciple.
Thirdly, conduct an informal interview. (Warning: Do not ask him/her to let you teach him/her. Instead, express your own desire to grow spiritually and to increase your level of spiritual discipline. Ask the person if he/she would like to join you in a spiritual journey for the purpose of developing personal spiritual disciplines.)
Fourth, make sure that you agree together to be faithful to fulfilling the assignments. Go over the time requirements for a typical week. (For this information, see the Introduction in the 222 Manual. Agree not to proceed with other lessons until every point is understood. Agree to expect each to hold the other accountable.)
Fifth, if all is in agreement, set a date to begin and proceed.
Q 6. How do I conduct the weekly session?
A 6. You may conduct your session in anyway you choose. However, make sure the assignments are completed and memory verses are mastered. (If one of you is not able to memorize effectively, then make sure the disciple can at least paraphrase and understand the content of the verse.) The disciple will only expect of another what was expected of him/her. The following outline is an example:
1. Arrive at your meeting place on time.
2. Have a time of sharing about the week and things God is doing in your lives.
3. Quote the memory verses. Include both the verse and its location in the Scriptures.
4. Go over the Bible study. (It is not necessary to go over each question unless the disciple is a new Christian. Focus on problem questions. Probe until you are certain the disciple has a biblical understanding of the issue at hand. If you both are confused, approach your pastor for clarification.)
5. Go over any supplemental assignments.
6. Have a time of intercessory prayer for one another and other needs as the Lord leads.
Q 7. What makes "The 222 Plan" different from other disciple-making plans.
A 7. If the curriculum is biblical and the disciple grows in grace, all disciple-making plans are good. However, what makes "The 222 Plan" process different from most is that it has as its goal the fulfillment of the "Great Commission" or turning as many disciples as possible into disciple-makers. Most disciple-making programs have as a goal the indoctrination of the disciple in Christian living. While that is a worthy goal, it will not meet the standard of the "Great Commission." The "Commission's" goal is to have every disciple become a reproducing disciple-maker. "The 222 Plan" was born out of 2 Timothy 2:2 and has as its slogan: "Disciple-Making is our Goal; Mentoring is our Process.”
8. Why does "The 222 Plan" place an emphasis on one-on-one disciple-making?
A 8. All processes of instruction have value as long as the process used bears fruit. However, our Lord exercised almost all known basic processes of instruction and the method that appears to have born the most fruit is His one-on-one instruction of Paul in the Arabian Desert. Paul's instruction to Timothy was to teach faithful men that they in turn may teach others. It is assumed that the preferable way is the one Jesus modeled in teaching Paul. Why would one make that assumption? Because it was the only experience Paul had with Jesus after he believed.
Here are some advantages that the one-on-one process has over other methods:
1. Mentoring is focused instruction. The mentor relates directly to the needs of the disciple without the disruption of others needing different instruction at the same time.
2. Mentoring affords one the opportunity to share one's life more intimately when appropriate. Being transparent in sharing can be inappropriate in a public forum.
3. Mentoring allows for immediate feedback without the social hindrances of embarrassment being experienced by the disciple. For example, some people grow impatient when questions are asked by the perceived "slower learner.”
4. Mentoring allows for immediate adjustments in every aspect of the instruction. Time is not wasted!
The Helmsman Institute for Biblical Mentoring
A training ministry of
222 PLAN MINISTRIES