An Attender is anyone who shows up at least periodically at a Christian gathering such as a church service or a Bible study. They have some commitment to be physically present, for which pastors and leaders are quite pleased! And they are probably involved to some degree in serving and giving.
But by definition, Attenders do not share their testimony or witness to lost people. They don't train disciples. They don't form new gatherings or equip leaders. Their primary investment is for themselves and their family, as most Attenders admit that they attend in order to “get something out of it” and would soon leave if they did not.
Most modern-day Christians falls into this category, but it's actually difficult to find people in the New Testament who were merely Attenders! Among the few who are named would be Eutychus, the young man who fell asleep as Paul preached, plunged to his death and was immediately raised back to life (Acts 20.9-10). This sleepy Christian motif aptly describes many believers today.
Reaching Up: Moving from Attender to Witness
Being an Attender is a great start, because being part of the body of Christ is vital to our spiritual well-being. But Jesus expects more from His disciples—He commands us all to be a witness. To progress forward, an Attender must cross the Confidence Barrier . This is very difficult for most people to do on their own, so this part of disciple-making involves a faithful Witness coming alongside them to help develop the confidence they need to share their faith boldly.
Skills and activities that will help you move Attenders to become Witnesses:
Accountability to One Another
- Participate in a weekly obedience-based group or church
- Be baptized
- Learn about the Three Commands
- Do the Acts 2 Study
- Do a study of the "One Anothers" in the New Testament
Intimacy with God
- Understand the assurance of your salvation
- Learn the basics of how to use and study the Bible
- Learn how to pray using the Lord's Prayer as a model (Matthew 6.9-15)
- Study the document "Are We Disciples of Jesus Christ?"
- Learn the One Mission diagram
- Learn about the Great Commission Partnership
- Develop a consistent time of devotion (pray, read and memorize Scripture)
- Begin praying for your family, friends, and neighbors
- Learn a few vision-casting stories
- Read through Books of the Bible: Mark, John, 1 John
Multiplication of the Kingdom
- Prepare a people list or oikos map
- Learn to share your personal testimony (2-minute and 15-second verisons)
- Learn 411 (a combination of other elements)
- Learn how to share gospel bridges
- Learn a gospel tool such as The Gospel on the Hand or Three Circles
- Learn the Four Kinds of Disciples
- Spend 5 hours observing Witnesses and recording it with Models
- Share your testimony with people on your list
best done as a group exercise
something disciples can do on their own
A disciple becomes a Witness when they are sharing their testimony and the gospel message on a regular basis.