The Goal of Training

Training 2 small

Sitting in a meeting recently a person made this comment, she said,

“We have got a new leader, they went on a course and now they are trained.”

That comment made me stop and wonder…when is someone actually trained? It is commonly held that someone is trained when they have completed a course, when they have got a degree, when they have attended a set of lectures, when they have mastered some content but is that how it works? When does training end? When can training stop? Can we ever say that someone is now trained?

Tony Payne, Colin Marshall and the guys at MTS in Australia have helpfully developed a way of understanding the process of training and discipleship. It goes something like this….

•Far away from God

•Thinking about God

•Profession of Faith

•New Disciple

•Growing Disciple

•Minister to Others

•Trainer of Others

Every person is somewhere in their spiritual journey, somewhere along that line. Training is simply helping them to move along the line, one step to the right. That process helps us to see the goal clearly. A trainee is trained when they are training others, not when they have mastered material, or attended a course or been awarded a piece of paper. A trainer is trained only when they have understood, embraced and internalised training for themselves.

Here are some implications for when we train:

  • Whenever you teach a trainee something encourage them to teach it to someone else.
  • As a part of your training read and discuss 2 Tim 2:2 with them.
  • Pray with them around Matt 9:38. Get them to pray this with others.
  • Expect them to be involved in the process of recruiting and training others. Ask them to do it. Hold them accountable to it. Make time for this in their apprenticeships.
  • Keep on training them until you see them training others.

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