Tag: antioch discipleship school

A Discipleship School Testimony

Justin and I have been working hard to get the word out about the Day, Night and International Discipleship Schools at Antioch.  As we have spoken with people, we have come to realize there are some common misconceptions about the schools. The first being that the schools are only for people who feel called into pastoral or mission work. The second is that it is something to do if you don’t have any other options at the moment – a sort of placeholder while you’re figuring out life.  We are happy to announce that neither of these perceptions are true! The schools are for anyone with any calling at any age and stage of life. Our goal is to equip you to be a lifelong, fruitful disciple of Jesus within the context where God has you. Instead of trying to explain this further myself, I figured it would be best to hear from former students. JR and Ginger Dollins attended the Night Discipleship School last fall.

CHECK OUT THEIR STORY:

I’m a 45-year-old woman, and when a 12-year career in the turbulent wine industry came to a halt last spring, I decided to venture out on my own in a direct marketing skin care and makeup company. In the midst of his 22-year career, my 48-year old husband felt like God wanted him to get involved in a family business. This was a difficult step of faith for him since he received a raise and an offer of promotion the very week he resigned. Both career changes happened while we were attending Antioch’s Vision and Values Course. Coincidence? No.

IT WAS GOD MOVING THINGS OUT OF THE WAY.

During this season, both my husband and I felt like God might be suggesting we apply to the Discipleship Night School. Between kids and new businesses, we couldn’t imagine how we would find space to do the school. We wrestled with the questions of, “God, are you really calling us to attend the Night Discipleship School? How can we swing this? It isn’t possible, is it? There’s just not any time? School is not what you do midlife, and definitely not a school that doesn’t add letters to your last name, right God?  We have two teenagers with multiple after-school activities, see how busy we are God?  Isn’t the Discipleship School for those called to the mission field? Are you calling us to the mission field? We have two new companies that we are trying to get off the ground – is that mission enough? Aren’t the schools only for recent college grads and empty-nesters” 

There was absolutely no time for us to fit the Discipleship School into our schedule.

Still, we enrolled in the Night Discipleship School this past fall.

Looking back we ask ourselves, “Why did we ever put this off?”

WE WERE SLOW TO OBEY, AND WE’VE LEARNED THAT DELAYED OBEDIENCE IS REALLY DISOBEDIENCE.

But God is gracious and had us right where we needed to be.  The depth of how much the Father loves us means more to us than ever.  Our time in the school transformed our friendships, our family and our marriage in a way that is beyond words. Learning that we are made God’s righteousness because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, plus the real, practical, everyday ways to be able to share what we learned is remarkable and is making a difference. It is affecting almost every conversation and our businesses, although difficult, are exceeding expectations in so many meaningful ways.

The speakers throughout the semester were incredible, and their teachings still challenge us. One speaker shared this, “Where is your joy on a day to day basis? The Bible says in the presence of the Lord there is fullness of joy.  So, who have you been meeting with every morning in your quiet times?” Another speaker said, “Jesus died on the cross and that is enough for ANY situation that might arise in your life.”

God’s dreams for our happiness and mission in life are MUCH bigger and better than we could even imagine. The sovereignty, holiness and love of God was continuously presented in a powerful way amidst a class community that changed the relationship we have with Him; it was just so good. Words are too finite.

Our classmates were amazing. If we could just shout one thing to everyone reading this, it would be this –

THE PEOPLE THAT TAKE THE CLASS WITH YOU WILL PERMANENTLY CHANGE YOU FOREVER AND FOR THE BETTER.

This is truth. We had young people and seniors taking the class with us, all with a unique relationship with Jesus. This constantly taught us how we need diversity so we can have a healthy body. The vulnerability and friendships we made changed us forever. We found we couldn’t wait until the next class, and we never wanted the class to end. We were shocked that our spiritual hunger grew throughout the semester and beyond, where in the past we would normally be disenchanted after a short time.

The Discipleship Schools are for anyone, no matter the age or the life stage. God changed our lives forever through the Night Discipleship School. If God is prompting you, don’t hesitate! Say yes to the Discipleship School and the next step in your life-long relationship with Jesus.

Our application is live, and you can access it by clicking here. Applications are due June 15th.  If you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Justin or myself.

For more information about the Night Discipleship School, email Mick.

For more information about the Day Discipleship School, email Justin.

How to Discern the Will of God

Having worked with 20-year-olds for more than 15 years, and having been a 20-year-old myself in the not-too-distant past, I have noticed a recurring anxiety at times concerning the idea of calling and “discerning God’s will for my life.”  Should I take this job?  Should I move to this city?  Should I become a teacher, physician, engineer, church planter, stay-at-home-mom, realtor and so on? Should I date this girl? Should I break up with this guy? Should I buy this house or rent that one? And the list goes on. These seemingly big decisions can cause analysis paralysis, angst, frustration and even depression. Managing the tension between the desire to obey God, other people’s expectations, our own desires and opportunities available to us, can get to be overwhelming. Does God address this tension in the Scriptures? Thankfully, yes! In fact, we’re instructed to discern God’s will in multiple places throughout the Bible.

HERE ARE A COUPLE OF EXAMPLES:

  • “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” – Ephesians 5:15-17
  • “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” – Romans 12:2

Let’s focus on the second verse for a moment. When Paul commands us to be transformed so we can discern the will of God, two questions should naturally occur to the reader:

  1. What, specifically, does Paul mean by, “the will of God?”
  2. And, how do we renew our minds in order to be transformed?

I’m going to take a crack at answering, or at least addressing, both of those questions and my hope is that you’re both encouraged and equipped as a result!

 WHAT, SPECIFICALLY, DOES PAUL MEAN BY, “THE WILL OF GOD?”

Scholars refer to two different forms of the will of God in Scripture. One is God’s moral will, and the other is His will of decree.  His will of decree is that which God orders and it happens absolutely as God determines.  “And God said, ‘Let there be light!’  And there was light” (Genesis 1:3). Boom. That simple.  God decrees, and no one or nothing can thwart His purpose. But there is a second manifestation of God’s will – His moral will. “You shall have no other gods before Me” (Exodus 20:3). Clearly God’s desired intent is not always fully executed when it comes to His moral will. In that light, Romans 12:2 is clearly speaking of discerning God’s moral will. But we can be more specific than that. We find in Scripture that there are several categories of His moral will. What follows is a representative list:

  • Directional Leadership // Most of the big life decisions I mentioned at the beginning of this post would fall into this category. “God, this relationship is going really well, is it ok to get married?” or, “God, do I take the offer in Phoenix or in Baltimore once I graduate?” And so on. God does provide leadership, but perhaps not always in the form we most desire. I’ll come back to this.
  • Extrinsic Principles // These are the really clear commands in Scripture: don’t murder, or commit adultery, etc. There is no ambiguity here. We know if we are in God’s will or not thanks to extrinsic principles.
  • Intrinsic Guidance // This category touches on the “gray areas: of life. “How many bananas should I buy this week?” or “Should I go to the bank first and then the post office? Or the other way around?” Wait, God cares about that? Yes, keep reading.

Why do I make these distinctions?  Because we tend to focus a lot of emotional energy on directional leadership – what we tend to refer to as “God’s calling on my life,” but I would argue that the Scriptures only deal with directional leadership perhaps one percent of the time. There is certainly evidence that God is concerned with what we do with our lives (e.g.“Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them” – Acts 13:2), but I believe we stress this point a bit too much at times. Next, what about the extrinsic principles we see in Scripture? These help tremendously! But these principles still probably only account for an additional one to three percent of the decisions we make on a day-to-day basis.  I want to put forward to you that the overwhelming majority of what Paul meant when he exhorts us to, “discern God’s will” is in the area of intrinsic guidance. “But wait!,” you counter, “God is concerned about how many bananas I buy at HEB?” Yes, I believe He is.

THINK ABOUT IT: YOUR LIFE IS PREDOMINANTLY A COLLECTION OF MANY THOUSANDS OF SMALL DECISIONS MADE EVERY MOMENT OF EVERY DAY AND THOSE SMALL DECISIONS HAVE A MASSIVE CUMULATIVE EFFECT ON WHO WE ARE AND WHAT WE DO IN THIS LIFE.

And this idea moves us to address the second question:

HOW DO WE RENEW OUR MINDS IN ORDER TO BE TRANSFORMED?

We eat a lot of venison in our home. If you have ever eaten venison, you know that it can be a bit gamey. My wife, in an effort to make the meat more palatable, will put a mixture of Worcestershire (had to look up how to spell that word!) sauce, spices and other tangible expressions of the love of God into a plastic bag and seal up the steaks for a day or two.  Why? Because the steaks need to marinate in those flavors until you can’t distinguish the meat from the flavor. Get my point? If you were to simply sprinkle some salt on the steak after it comes off the grill, you could just as easily wash or scrape off that salt and the meat would be unaffected. But after marinating, the meat has been transformed!

DISCERNING GOD’S WILL IS LIKE THAT.

When we carve out time to prayerfully study the Bible, pray and meditate on the nature of God, it is like we are taking our brains out of our skulls and sealing them up in the Worcestershire sauce of Heaven until God’s nature and His ways have soaked into us, utterly transforming us through the miraculous renewal that takes place in our minds! Over time, we come to possess an inner compass, animated by the Holy Spirit, that directs even the subtlest decisions. Buying bananas, while seemingly an inane task when it comes to the things of God, is important because it touches our finances, health and other areas. And the Bible speaks directly to those. But because we don’t sit cross-legged in HEB with our journals in hand trying to discern whether to buy eight or 12 bananas this grocery run, we need to be reprogrammed to where we can make these thousands of small decisions in alignment with God’s moral will on the fly.

I would like to suggest that this is predominantly what Paul meant that we are to be transformed by the renewal of our minds to discern God’s will.  It’s in the 97 percent of our life that we often don’t see as spiritual, but that God is very much concerned with, i.e. your subtle decisions in conversations, at work, in recreation and so on.  Now, the bonus is that as we hide God’s Word in our hearts – as we marinate our minds in the Scriptures – we become equipped to discern God’s moral will when it comes to extrinsic principals (i.e. don’t look at a woman with lust in your heart), as well as His directional leadership. At times, God will speak a clear word to tell us where to go and what to do (e.g. Acts 16:9-10 and the Macedonian vision).  I find that to be the exception, however, rather than the rule.  Instead, I see that God has first and foremost, “called” us to Himself (Matthew 4:21, Matthew 9:9, Mark 7:14, Mark 8:1, Luke 6:13, Romans 1:6, Romans 8:30, 1 Corinthians 1:9).  And then from that place of intimacy, He leads us in every area of life as the Holy Spirit breathes on His word in our heart (e.g. Acts 16:6-8 where Paul had a general call and operated broadly within that context).

HOW DO WE DISCERN THE WILL OF GOD?

We become so saturated in His Word that we become like a glove that is moved by His hand at work in our subconscious. We marinate our brain in the Scriptures, if you will. If you wait to do that until you’re facing a big decision, you’re missing out on the lion’s share of what it means to be a disciple and to live in loving obedience to Jesus Christ. But for the ones who have taken the time to study His Word for themselves and submitted themselves to God’s revealed will in the Scriptures, you know the peace and contentment that abides even in times of great stress when you don’t know what to do. You find that the “big” decisions have taken their rightful place in your soul next to the greater call to submit all of life to His leadership through His Word.

“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” – 1 Corinthians 10:31

One helpful resource to get started can be found here.  If you have never read the whole Bible, now is a great time to start!  The whole counsel of God is critical to renewing our minds to be able to discern God’s will.

May God bless you immensely as you study His Word and may you know His peace at every crossroad as a result!

By Mick Murray – Discipleship Night School Director

 

 

 

Ready For An Adventure?

There is something really valuable about setting aside a period of time to be equipped and trained so we are functioning in all God is calling us to. We recently made significant changes to our training and discipleship process to make it more attainable for more people. This new process aims to provide you with more discipleship, equipping, training and practical tools to help you live out God’s calling on your life.

  • 1. Membership Course:

    Our three-week Membership Course takes an in-depth look at our purpose, values and history. In it, we share stories from the early days that shaped who we are as a church and capture how we live out our values. You will learn about our church structure, how we operate as an organization and where we’re going as a congregation. We will also explain what it means to be a member at Antioch, help you connect to a Lifegroup if you are not already involved in one and share how you can make an impact by volunteering with one of our ministries. At the end of the course you will have the opportunity to place membership.

  • 2. Vision and Values Course:

    After completing the Membership Course and placing membership your next step is to attend our 13-week Vision and Values Course. This course gives us a chance to come together and learn more about the core values for our congregation. Throughout the course, we will not only hear one of our leaders talk about our values, but we will also have an opportunity to get in small groups to discuss how we can implement these values into our everyday lives.

  • 3. Discipleship School:

    We want everyone to have the opportunity to discover how to walk out their destiny in God in a discipleship environment designed to challenge them and take them deeper into their relationship with Jesus. In the past, the day and night schools have been nine months long. However, we are adjusting them to be one semester long and implementing some other changes with hopes that more people will be able to take part in our discipleship schools.

    • Day School: The Day School is going to be full-time and is primarily a hands-on learning environment. The Day School is designed for young adults and those who have the capacity to attend the school full-time. The school will have an extended overseas outreach and will run every fall and every spring.
    • Night School: The Night School will combine instruction with hands-on learning. It is designed primarily for those with a full-time job or families. It will be one night a week and one Saturday a month for a semester. There will also be a week-long overseas outreach.
    • International School: This is for those who can’t wait to get overseas. Our international schools will provide a combination of instructional learning and real-time missions experience. We have two international schools, one in Asia and one in the Middle East and both run for nine months at a time.
  • 4. Church Planting School:

    Our church planting school will run every fall and every spring and is geared for those who feel God is calling them to the nations long term.

 

IN RESPONSE:

We encourage you to pray and ask God if this is an Acts 19 time in your life where you can be trained and equipped for what He has called you to.
If you are interested in one of our discipleship schools, the deadline to apply is April 1st. Find more information and apply online or by calling 254-754-0386.

Uncovering Potential

While hiking in the mountains of Colorado this summer I came across a pool of water appearing to come from nowhere. Bubbling water was visible at the head of the pool as the water flowed smoothly up from the ground. It bubbled up in such a way that sent ripples across the rest of the pool that eventually overflowed its banks. The overflowing bank created a trickling stream that flowed down the mountain.

My curiosity led me take a closer look, and I noticed the ground giving way underneath me ever so slightly.  The ground was soft and saturated to the point it absorbed my weight. I could tell the saturation wasn’t just at the surface level, but also deep beneath my feet. It was like I was walking on a thick mattress filled with water. As I watched the water bubble up from the soft ground, I stepped closer to the source of the water. Water gushed out from the hole like a geyser and forced the pool to overflow its banks, creating a larger stream. Each time I pushed on the ground around the hole, the same thing happened.

I connected the concept of what I was seeing in the natural to what I often see in the spiritual.

Leading the Discipleship School at Antioch means I see many new students commit to taking the risk of following God wholeheartedly each year. Each student who enters the classroom is filled with the deep potential of God that lies just beneath the surface, just waiting to come out.

I am convinced of our need for each other in the body of Christ according to 1 Corinthians 12, that each one of us plays a part in calling out the potential of others.

Every pool of potential in our lives needs a father, mother, sister or brother to call it out and help give it direction.

After the banks of our human potential overflow, we begin to operate in God’s fullness for our lives. When we operate in God’s fullness, we bring the most glory to Him and find fulfillment.

IN RESPONSE

What lies beneath the surface of your life today that needs to be called out? If you know the answer, live it out! If not, dive into the Word of God and your church community to discover it!

 

By Blake Hartsock, Director of Antioch Discipleship School

 

We just kicked off a new year of the discipleship school!  Get more information about the school and how you can get involved.

Antioch Discipleship School Changing the World

Last month Antioch Discipleship School sent four teams overseas to share the Gospel with unreached people groups and partner with local Antioch missionaries. Each team witnessed God showing up in a powerful way. These testimonies from a couple of our teams will stir your faith!

South Africa

When I got to Cape Town, South Africa, I was immediately amazed by the beauty of the city and encouraged to watch what God would do. On Saturday, after spending a day getting to know and minister to the students at the University of Capetown, my teammate Zach and I met a man named Marthias who walked up to us and introduced himself. Marthias was from Uganda and after some small talk, he shared his dream to become a lawyer with us and help restore the Ugandan government. Blown away by his passions and encouraged by his character, Zach and I shared the Gospel with Marthias and he gave his life to Jesus! It was absolutely the hand of God that we met him because we met Marthias two days before he was moving to Uganda after being in Cape Town for four years.

Marthias decided to spend the night with us to learn more about Jesus and we stayed up late that night with him, telling him about who Jesus is and teaching him about the Bible. Marthias was intrigued by the Bible after our conversation and wanted his own. Luna, another man on our team, gave Marthias a study Bible to take back to Uganda with him. Marthias was amazed by the kindness of God and decided to come to Antioch Capetown with us the next morning before his flight to Uganda. This was the first time he had ever been to a church service and it marked him. He also got connected to many people on our short term team and actually emailed and thankful a few of us the next day from Uganda. After church Marthias left us, encouraged and ready to impact his home country for Jesus’ name.

The next day I got a  message from a man named Bob who was friends with Marthias. Bob noticed a change in Marthias and wanted to hear about the reason for this change, so he asked if we could meet and talk with him. I went with another teammate to meet with him and we shared the Gospel with Bob. He too gave his life to Jesus!

The power of the Gospel and God’s divine intervention if powerful.

 

Middle East

One day one of our team members was trying to take pictures of all the different kinds of money she had and this fully covered Muslim woman started laughing at us because we looked ridiculous with all that money on the ground. She noticed there was a bill from Brazil, so she asked us about it and I started taking with her.

I told her my name and she talked a bit about herself. She was a Muslim from Saudi Arabia. She asked my name and I told her it was Talita, which is Arabic for “little girl,” and is from the story of when Jesus raises a little girl from the dead in Luke. I grabbed my Bible and read her the story. She’d never seen or read a Bible before. I shared with her that the same way Jesus raised that girl from the dead, he’s raised me from spiritual death. I shared my testimony with her, and talked about the kindness of God as a father, how He calls me His little girl and the life and redemption I have now. While I was talking she started crying, and at one point she asked if she could hug me because what I was talking about was touching her heart. I reshared the Gospel with her and she was blown away.

She told me she came into the city where we were once to twice a year and every time she’d come, she would plant herself at a coffee shop in hopes of someone talking to her because she was away from family and desperately wanted relationships with people. This is my personal passion so I got to share my heart about how I want to grow and develop coffee shops and farms for relational building and community development. She was shocked by why I wanted to love people that way, so I got to go back into the Bible with her and share another story of how Jesus calls us to love people. Before I left, I prayed for her and we exchanged contact information. I’ve gotten to talk to her several times about the Bible since.

Her name translated into English means faith. I’m praying for her faith to know Jesus and respond to the Gospel.

 

 

Dubai

One night some of my team and I were walking through the Souq (Arabic for Market) and we wanted to stop at a spice shop. We went into one randomly and it was bustling with people. We met the two brothers who ran the shop and were from Iran. There was also a worker there from Afghanistan. We got to talking and tried some of the nuts. While deciding what nuts to purchase, one of the girls I was with asked if they were Muslim. The brother, Sam, mentioned that he is but thinks that Islam is causing a lot of the problems in the world today. Seeing an open door, she gave him a Hope Booklet which is full of encouraging Bible verses about the character of God and who Jesus really is. We left and thought the story was over. A week and a half later, I thought I would go back and visit my friends at the spice shop. I went and greeted Sam and asked if had read the book. He told me that he had not but that his brother had it. I then noticed that his brother wasn’t there. After asking where he was, Sam told me that he had gone back to Iran and had the Hope booklet with him. A seed we planted had just been taken to a nation that is just as desperate for the Gospel!

Dubai is home to people from every nation and thousands of people groups. It is a literal miracle waiting to happen! What the world thought was just for business and the biggest, best new thing, God is going to use to touch the four corners of the earth. A personal highlight for me was getting to meet people from some of the most closed countries in the world and getting to know their people group solely because God had spoken to me in a prayer time three years ago. I was able to pray for several people from this people group, make them feel known and loved, and realize that God is using the city of Dubai to reach the most unreached. Our team met and blessed people from all over the world!

 

Serving Out of Their Need

When I think about raising support, my first thought is always “I don’t want to ask people for money.” Confronting the task of raising my own funding for the trip the Antioch Discipleship School takes every year is no different.

As part of the curriculum, students in the Antioch Discipleship School finish the program with an international outreach trip. This year, with a departure date set for May 8th, our team is set to head to Dubai UAE—contingent on our fundraising $45,000, of course.

As we brainstormed as a team about how to raise such an intimidating amount of support, we recalled a lesson from the school about the importance of the body working together to bring glory to God here on earth. The idea of a service project emerged and we decided to run with it. If we are going to ask others to edify the body by offering their financial support, then we could participate by offering our time and service to someone in need.

We decided to plan a day serving a member of Antioch and to ask people to sponsor us, similar to sponsoring a runner in a 5k. Reaching out, we connected with Megan, a recently widowed mother of two young boys. Being an incredible mother and faithful servant, she was a perfect fit.

On Sunday, April 19th, our team of sponsored volunteers arrived at Megan’s home. Over the course of four hours, we were able to not only landscape her yard and flowerbed but also build and paint a fort for her two boys, Elijah and James. Local businesses and anonymous donors graciously donated the supplies and fort.

As a team, we felt accomplished in having served someone in the process of asking others to serve us.  Even if we hadn’t raised a dime for our trip, we knew we’d participated in the workings of the body of Christ and contributed to the Kingdom. In Ephesians 4:12, Paul says the Lord gifted the body with different types of people “to equip His people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.” Some people can ask for support, some people can give to a cause, some can serve a widow and some can do it all to go to Dubai.

If you want to hear more about this project, email Christen Batson.

What’s Next?

“Why are you doing the Antioch Discipleship School,” I asked?

As she looked up at me, an unknown staff member, the practiced response of, “God told me,” escaped from her mouth.  Sensing a deeper question was in order, I responded with, “Really? Is that the whole story?”  It wasn’t. Her story began to flow, slowly and hesitantly at first, followed by a deluge of passion long kept in check by the threat of disappointment.  She had been serving in the church for a long time, but somehow in the midst of the service, she felt she had lost the ability to hear the Lord’s voice.  She was devoted, but had lost intimacy and direction and realized something had to change.  As the emotion stilled, she looked up at me and said, “I can’t go on like this, so I guess it all comes down to what’s next.”

What’s Next?

As the disciples sat in awe of their resurrected Savior as He ascended into heaven, this question of, “What’s next?” had to be pounding in their hearts and minds. Jesus had left them only one command they were capable of obeying; “Don’t leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift that my Father promised…in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 1:4). They knew the rest of his commands couldn’t be followed without His help. They had no idea how to make disciples of all nations, but staying put seemed like a reasonable request.  You see, they knew they needed more than just their own giftings and talents to accomplish the great things Jesus had promised they would do.  So they took some time to wait until God had given them the very thing they needed, the Holy Spirit. Then, fully released and equipped for mission, they went about changing the world, just as Jesus had told them they would.

As He did with the disciples, God often calls us into periods of preparation and waiting so He can sow into us the things we need to walk out the Kingdom adventure He has prepared for us.  Those periods may feel like a holding pattern of preparation, that challenging time between today and the anxiously awaited release into the dreams God has put in our heart. We have all been there at one time or another and many of us may find ourselves there today. Sometimes we need a safe environment in which to encounter God and hear His voice, to journey with others who are asking similar questions and to commit in faith to walk out the things God speaks.

The Antioch Discipleship Schools were formed with these ideas in mind.  As we get ready to kick off a new year, we are excited about what God has in store for those who have set aside a year of their lives to seek Him and get the answers to that pesky, “What’s next?” question.  This year we have more than 125 students in our various schools and they are all seeking direction and clarity on how to move forward in their relationship with God, how to hear His voice and obey and how to live out a Kingdom life.  As you pray for them, ask that they would submit themselves fully to the process of learning and growing. Ask that they would receive from God everything they need to mature and move forward and that God would speak and clarify the calling on each and every one of their lives. Ask that each of them would know with confidence the answer to the question, “What’s next?”

And now, I have the same question for you… What’s next? A year spent in the Antioch Discipleship School would not be a year wasted.

Antioch Discipleship School is a life-changing experience for students of any age, background, vocation or season of life.

It is a place to experience radical transformation and find clarity for a lifetime of following Jesus. It could very well be what’s next for you.

In Response

Apply for the Antioch Discipleship School today.

Got questions? Ask away.

By Trey Green, Antioch Night Discipleship School Director

The Discipleship School Is Worth It

After graduating, he did the Antioch Discipleship School, then entered the business world in Waco. In November 2013, Cameron married Abby, and in August of 2014, they moved to Malibu, where Cameron attends Pepperdine Law School, and they are both involved in the Antioch Fullerton church plant.

1) Cameron, tell us about why you chose to do the discipleship school after college.

Um, I think for me I had always had a heart for business, but there was something deep in me that knew I wasn’t ready to really go out into the world and to do it for God. I knew I needed to give a year of my life to get the values so deep in me that I knew I could go into any situation in the future and not make it about me.

2) So was it worth taking a year to focus on? Why?

Absolutely. The experiences I had and the things I went into the school seeking, that foundation, it really exceeded what I had imagined. To be a whole person and have that foundation is really priceless, especially working the past two years after the school, I feel like I reap the reward of that. I really can’t imagine a more valuable thing.

Cam did the Discipleship School from the fall of 2011 to the spring of 2012 and it changed his life.

3) Tell me your best story or memory from the school.

On our spring outreach, we did a couple of Luke 9-10 trips, modeled after the story where the disciples go two-by-two, and Jesus tells them to only take what is on their back and the sandals on their feet. We were in the Middle East, and me and two guys wanted to emulate that. So we asked God what town to go to and felt like we should go to a town a few hundred miles away. It was one of the most fun things I’ve ever done. In those 36 hours, my life was changed. We met an orthodox Muslim man who invited us to stay in his home, we stayed up through the night and prayed over him and his family, and really saw God show up. That sticks out – being in the middle of nowhere with God, nowhere to stay and no money, it was really life changing.

4) How does your experience in the discipleship school impact your life now?

I would say more than anything the word is wholeness. There’s no magic formula, you’re just in the presence of God four to five hours a day, and when you do that, you are going to leave changed. I had a lot of junk in my heart going in, and I have so much to work on still, but I think I see it most in my marriage. I can’t imagine anything I’m more thankful for than that my wife and I both did the school and have those values.

I think wholeness and security. We tend to waver, throughout college we feel like a rollercoaster, stuck in that place of spending time with God for three weeks in a row, then not for a few weeks. Throughout the course of that year God did something, a work in my heart where I feel more secure and firm in him than ever before.

5) What would you say to someone trying to decide whether or not they should do the school?

Do it! I can’t imagine a situation where you would ever, ever regret taking nine months of your life to get whole in God. There are so many good opportunities out there, and the hesitation can be that you will lose ground in your field or wherever you are, but to that I’d say that God honors when we take that time to trust him with our future. You’ll never regret it. You’ll have more fun than you can ever imagine. It’s just worth it.

Find out more about how the Antioch Discipleship School is worth it. Contact the school with any questions.

Antioch Discipleship School: Fall Outreach Testimony

Recently, our Antioch Discipleship School sent teams of students on fall outreaches to six locations across the US:

The team that went to Norman, Oklahoma to serve Antioch Norman spent much of their week reaching out to people, specifically international students, and inviting them to a Thanksgiving feast that was to take place during their trip.

The ADS team in Norman

Read more about their trip and hear ADS student, Nathan, share how the nations were impacted from Norman:

“Friday night of the outreach was the Thanksgiving feast. More than 140 people came from more than 64 nations! Multiple people decided to follow Jesus. I followed up with a man named Sumit. He is from Nepal and is in America hoping to work at a hospital for his med school clinicals. He had spontaneously showed up in church the Sunday before our arrival because he “was drawn there and wanted to learn more about Jesus!” The church has been believing for Isaiah 60:1-3 to happen and it was happening that night! Sumit came to the feast and gave his life to Jesus that night. I saw him at  church on Sunday and invited him to sit with me. I got to teach him why we worship and what words like Hallelujah and Amen mean. It was powerful! The nation of Nepal was changing in the seat right next to me. 

ADS students talk to international students at the Thanksgiving feast.

Thanksgiving feast with international students at Antioch Norman

Ross was able to connect with a student from Mozambique named Xadraque. He was familiar with Christianity but also had some Islamic roots. Once he found out Ross was a personal trainer, he could not stay away. He kept asking him questions about training and Ross was able to instantly connect. During the message, Ross could tell Xadraque’s was interested in what he was hearing. Ross shared the Gospel again and Xadraque wanted Jesus! He gave his life to Jesus and was able to meet a member of the international Lifegroup, which is awesome!

Hanging out with middle eastern students

The whole trip was marked by peace and rest as we spent a lot of time praying and walking. We got to serve the church and international ministry and really blessed them.”

The team at the Oklahoma border

Want to know how you can be a part of a fall outreach with Antioch Discipleship School? Get more info here.

Outreach in Uganda – A Discipleship School Testimony

It took a long time to get to Uganda – a very long time.

Think 18 hours of flying and 10 hours of driving, and you’ve made it. But I’d do it all over again in a heartbeat.

My team consisted of 16 adults and kids. The goal of our trip was to share the Gospel and ultimately find hungry people who would lead discipleship groups of Ugandans after we were gone. Each morning we met as a team to worship, encourage one another and get vision for the day. Then we were sent out to the city in twos.

One day, my husband and I were in a group with two of the kids from our team. We prayed for guidance, and then we each shared what we had received from the Lord. My husband saw a picture of windowpanes. Since we didn’t have a specific destination, at each intersection we simply took turns asking God which direction to go.

L: Some of our team helped cook a meal at an orphanage that we visited. R: Rice and beans are typical fare for lunch.

We found ourselves on the campus of a technical college walking past a cornfield when my husband saw windowpanes that matched the picture he had received earlier. We went to investigate but only found an abandoned building. Giving up, we turned around to leave. We were stopped short by a man driving up on a motorcycle.

His name was Stephen, and he was a professor at the college. He had planned to go out with his colleagues that afternoon but felt like he should return home instead. That sounded like a divine appointment to us!

L: Some of the teachers on our team visited a nearby school to share Jesus. R: A typical scene in Uganda

He invited us into his home – adjacent to the abandoned building with the windowpanes – and we each took turns sharing part of God’s story from creation to Christ. He was excited to hear stories from the Bible and shared his desire for the people of his tribe to know them, too. We encouraged him to share these stories with others and promised we would come back again.

I remember walking away in amazement at how many things had to work together perfectly in order for that meeting to happen.

God was leading us as well as our new friend, Stephen.

We returned one more time to visit Stephen and found out he had told the stories to others and was eager to hear more. We led him and another friend through a discovery Bible study and encouraged them to keep sharing what God was teaching them.

Our time in Uganda was over before we knew it. By the end of two weeks, our team had met more than 30 people who were hungry to know the Word of God and share with others. We gave their information to the long-term team to connect with in the future.

One day our team met for our morning meeting under the mango tree at our hotel.

While we won’t be there to see these people grow in their faith, I’m so thankful to have played a small part in their stories and in God’s plan for Uganda.

We all have a part to play, and one day I look forward to seeing the full tapestry of how God has woven all those parts together into one magnificent masterpiece.

By Heather Garcia, Antioch Night Discipleship School Class of 2014

Interested in learning more about the Antioch Discipleship School? We’ve got details for you.