We asked Leah Green, wife, mother, great-grandmother and co-leader of Marriage GetAway, all the discipleship questions you’ve been looking for real-life answers to!
We have the great privilege to hear from a master disciplemaker today, Leah Green on the topics of disciplemaking and “the disciplines” in the context of marriage. Leah and her husband Terry have been in ministry with The Navigators since 1995 have been the leaders of Marriage GetAway, a marriage retreat at Glen Eyrie, for 14 years! For more on Leah including podcasts and other blog posts, visit www.theapprenticeapproach.org.
You and Terry have led Glen Eyrie’s Marriage GetAway retreat for 14 years now – with each year having at least one if not up to six retreats – How do you personally stay fresh in your perspective on God’s view of marriage, our calling in it, and how it can impact others? (Are there any helpful rhythms/patterns/habits you’ve found along the way? How has it looked different in different seasons?)
Leading Marriage GetAway has been refreshing for us – we are convinced that we must live what we share and that what we share is foundational to a healthy marriage. The rhythm is: daily in time in God’s Word and prayer – individually and conversation with each other over what we discover – then time praying over our day and our family and ministry. (Matt. 22:37-40) It has looked different in the seasons with young children, then a working woman in the market place and now in full-time ministry what gives us a very healthy pace – each is part of my shaping and story. God is Sovereign, and I am thankful for the lessons in the journey!
Talk to us about what you’ve learned over the years about maintaining personal health and health in your marriage as you’ve poured out for others.
Terry is an outdoors guy, he stays healthy physically and mentally through running, golfing, and fishing. I try to stay healthy through eating well (still working on the exercise disciplines) and interacting with friends and family. We have learned that giving each other freedom to be who we are has brought life and health to our marriage. We are both introverts by nature, but extroverts on demand when we are in ministry – it’s a “God thing” in how comfortable and life-giving it seems for us to reach out to others.
In light of the different seasons you’ve been through and demands of owning a business, raising kids, being a wife, mother, friend and disciplemaker: talk to us about how to make wise choices when someone asks you to disciple them – how do you decide who to say “yes” to and who to say “no” to? Are there any defining characteristics you look for?
We both take seriously a request from anyone who wants to be discipled. Our filter in time invested will be how the person responds to some simple assignments. A person who genuinely wants discipleship is hungry, available and teachable. The “yes” or “no” actually is in their response.
When you begin a disciplemaking relationship, how do you know where to start?
We spend some time in relational conversation, learning who they are and where they are spiritually. We pray for tools* to offer that will be meaningful and effective springboards for lifelong patterns that can be developed and shared with others.
*Terry and Leah talk more in-depth on some tools they use in The Apprentice Approach Podcast, Episode 015 – click here to listen!
There are these things called “the basics” – “old school” Navigator ways – why are they so foundational? Over all these years, are they still just as “alive” or are they now antiquated? How have you seen God work in and through disciplines such as: Scripture memory, prayer, fellowship, and evangelism?
Indeed, some things are timeless! What can change is the method, but not the message. Each of the above disciplines are life-giving (as it says in Deuteronomy 32:47, “These instructions are not mere words — they are your life.”) We think it is so critical to share the “why” of the basics, the motive behind the discipline. We have these basic tools to offer in how to create, correct, & maintain a strong relationship with Christ and fulfill our purpose in this world.
Is there anything you typically do during your time with the person you are discipling?
There are incredible Navigator resources that we have used:
- Growing Strong in God’s Family – excellent in how to begin reading, journaling, memorizing scripture.
- Lessons on Assurance and Lessons on Christian Living – learning to claim the promises of God
- The Gentle Art of Discipling Women, by Dana Yeakley – being a disciple/being a disciplemaker. This is a hands-on handbook that one can use if they have never discipled; it’s personal and practical.
- I also like to have a Quiet Time with my gals, sharing heart-to-heart from what the Holy Spirit revealed to us in the Word. And then praying together.
- Sometimes it is simply hearing a hurting or frustrated heart – bringing a word of Encouragement, if the Lord leads, and simply caring because this is a person not a project and I want the relationship to be real.
What would you say has been the impact of disciplemaking on your life? Why say “yes” to this “Great Commission,” this self-sacrificing, humble, loving and at times demanding calling?
The Great Commission has also been called “The Last Commandment.” It is an act of obedience rather than an option. Because God’s Word is life-giving, it gives life to the disciplemaker as well as the one discipled. There is no joy that compares to bringing one to Christ and/or helping one grow (rooted and grounded in her faith).
Anything else? Any stories come to mind or anything you want share or feel like God’s laying on your heart to share with us?
“Where there is a will there is a way!” Terry and I have both engaged in long-distance discipling through telephone conversations or FaceTime as well as actually being with. I’m the FaceTime part of the example – I love being able to see the one I’m talking to and I’m currently meeting with two different women through FaceTime. I would also add that not everyone that we reach out to or expresses a desire to be discipled is a victory story. But, that is not my call to judge. I ask or respond when asked and see what God will do. Eternal friendships have come out of the step of faith and I can trust God with the ones who just weren’t ready or interested. Either way, I’m responsible to live the call and with that comes peace and joy!
Looking for more from Leah Green or on the topics of marriage, disciplemaking and different tools to help you with disciplemaking?