THE RIGHT START
From 1974–1979, a young, upstart Presbyterian youth pastor named Ron invaded local high schools in my hometown of Jackson, Mississippi, boldly sharing the Gospel one-on-one with anyone who would listen — and with some who wouldn’t. Over the years, countless teenagers heard and understood God’s plan of salvation for the first time. Hundreds responded. Many went on to serve the Lord in full-time ministry as church-planters, youth ministers, pastors, and missionaries.
I’m one of those who heard the Gospel for the first time through Ron back in the mid-seventies. However, my first response to Ron and his Gospel was not to repent, but to run. I ran from Ron, from his “disciples,” and from God. I ran for about six months, avoiding Ron the best I could. It was a difficult task, as he seemed to show up everywhere. He was at every football and basketball game. He was in the school halls, in the cafeteria, in the parking lot. He and his band of disciples were always inviting me to another retreat, another Bible study, another prayer meeting, another youth night at the church. Finally in November of 1975, I responded to the Gospel. I repented and put my faith in Christ alone. Fortunately, it didn’t end there. Ron wasn’t content just to carve a notch in his well-worn Bible to represent yet another soul saved. Since he was not out to save souls, but to make disciples, his work with me was just beginning. He added me to one of his famous “action groups” where about eight of us met together weekly and learned to walk with God.
I believe in one-to-one evangelism, one-to-one follow-up, and one-to-one discipleship. Here’s why. Ron shared the Gospel with me. I didn’t respond. I ran. Ron ran after me. For six months he ran after me, preaching to me and praying for me. He just wouldn’t go away. That’s one-to-one follow-up.
After I responded to the Gospel, Ron began to disciple me in a small group. He taught me how to study and live the Bible. He taught me how to pray. He taught me how to share my faith and how to make disciples. That’s one-to-one discipleship. (2 Timothy 2:2)
Personal follow-up and discipleship. That’s the Great Commission. That’s what ONE 2 ONE is all about.
It’s a guide. It can’t make a disciple, but it can help you make one. Most importantly, it helps a new disciple get the right start.