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Training philosophy

What are the foundations of our training philosophy? What characteristics do we hope EMM workers possess? Find these answers as well as best practices for training here.

As recipients of the extravagant love of God, we have been rescued from slavery to sin and death and delivered into His glorious kingdom. We lay aside our old life and live fully in the new life He has given us as His sons and daughters -- citizens of His kingdom. As we live in His kingdom and learn His ways, we invite others to join us. This process of growth and multiplication is what we call “discipleship.”

Training programs at EMM are designed to encourage and equip people to grow in their calling as “disciples who are making disciples,” according to the unique gifts and callings of each person and in accordance with the foundations of the organization.


Mission statement

Christ’s transforming love compels us to
cross cultures
engage the world
and make disciples of Jesus.

Core values

In everything we do, we are guided by three core values:
    • Obedience: listening to and obeying the call and leading of God through His Spirit
    • Well-being: attending to the physical, mental/emotional, and spiritual well-being of each           person
    • Multiplication: working to empower and equip each disciple to make more disciples

Discipleship philosophy summary

We view discipleship as having four key pillars:
    Relationship is the context for discipleship. People are discipled through intimate,                       meaningful, life-sharing relationships with both God and other people.
    Obedience is the method of discipleship. We learn to surrender our lives to God out of love           for Him and let Him live through us. Trying to do this on our own will only result in failure           or compromise. We need God’s power to be working in us, and people around us who love,           encourage, and keep us accountable to discerning and obeying God’s leading in our lives.
    Transformation is the goal of discipleship. We want to personally be transformed into the               likeness of Christ, as well as see God’s power transform families, communities, and nations.        God’s vision is much greater than our own individual call.
    Multiplication is the fruit of discipleship. Jesus sends us out as disciple-makers to share with       others the things we have learned and to encourage them to pass it on to others.

Characteristics of EMM workers

EMM believes the following qualities and dispositions are crucial for everyone involved in carrying out our mission. Development of these characteristics is given highest priority in the training of EMM workers and staff throughout their connection with EMM. We acknowledge that none of us have attained perfection in these things but desire to seek the grace of God together to continue growing.

A committed life of discipleship as evidenced by:

    • growing intimacy with God (John 15:1-17)
    • willingness to sacrifice to follow Jesus (Luke 14:26,27)
    • attitudes of love, servanthood, and reconciliation in relationships (Eph. 4:1-3)
    • commitment to being accountable and contributing to the local church (Heb. 10:24-25)
    • a strong foundation in a Christocentric, missional understanding of the Biblical story (Gen.           12:1-3, Matt. 5:17, 28:18-20)
    • passion for the lost and holistic proclamation of the kingdom (Matt. 4:23)
    • evidence of the fruits and gifts of the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22,23, I Cor. 12:27,28)
    • healthy, thriving family life (Col. 3:18-21)
    • generous giving of time, talents, and resources (Matt. 25:14-30, Acts 20:35)
    • a lifestyle of joy and celebration (John 15:11)

A humble life-long learner

We believe that there is always more to learn and that God’s lessons often come in unexpected ways. We believe we have things to learn from people of different spiritual streams and backgrounds, from both formal and informal education, and from all of life’s varied experiences.

Healthy rhythms and priorities

We believe Jesus leads us in ways that result in healthy individuals, families, and communities. We desire to learn healthy rhythms of rest and work, solitude and fellowship, celebration and mourning, as individuals and families, so that each person flourishes.

Commitment to serving on a team

We desire that each person has intimate relationships with like-minded people in the place where he or she serves. Team is a place for discerning vision, walking in accountability, and encouraging each person’s unique gifting and role. This often means learning to work with members from a variety of ethnic backgrounds.

Leadership and interpersonal skills

Skills in administration, decision making, goal setting, conflict transformation, and organizational leadership are important parts of serving in the kingdom. 

Appreciation of the new culture; skills in cross-cultural understanding and adaptation

Serving in a cross-cultural setting requires deep humility and appreciation of the diversity of cultures in our world, as well as specific skills that aid in understanding and adapting to a new culture and learning a new language.

Commitment to incarnating the gospel in culturally relevant ways

We desire that each culture can see and receive an expression of the gospel that is true to the heart of God and unique to its culture and language.

Vision for multiplying communities of disciples

In every place we go, our heart is to see multiplying communities of discipleship form and grow. We equip people with simple, reproducible, and culturally relevant tools for supporting this kind of growth.

Commitment to prayer and intercession

As people on mission with God, we understand that everything flows out of our relationship with Him. We move forward as He leads us and pray with passion and persistence for His kingdom to come and His will to be done in every way.

Holistic ministry that empowers people and communities

We believe the gospel is about transforming every area of people’s lives and communities. We desire to bless the communities we serve through mutual sharing of resources and encouraging the potential in everyone.

Mobilizing others for mission

Each person has a responsibility to encourage those in their networks to greater faithfulness to God’s mission, whether it’s through prayer, giving, or going themselves.

Commitment to EMM’s organizational culture, values, and policy

We desire to continually build common language and understanding that helps us work together in healthy, life-giving ways.

Best practices for training

In order to effectively encourage the characteristics stated above, we implement training experiences that adhere to the following best practices:

Be Christocentric and transformational

The core of all training is encouraging a deeper love for and dependency on Jesus – to hear His voice and be transformed into His image through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Cultivate the humility needed to learn from all people, spiritual streams, and cultures

Training encompasses a global Christian perspective and includes the fullness of Christian spirituality. Training facilitates persons learning to work in fellowship with others, learning from people of other cultures/streams of spirituality, and striving for true Christian community living.

Build for lifelong learning

Training focuses on encouraging people to engage with concepts and situations as a learner, rather than offering simplistic answers. Training is a long-term process and includes on-going coaching and mentoring throughout one’s time with EMM.

Give time for integration of learning

Training focuses on key concepts with ample time for reflective and practical exercises, in a local context whenever possible.

Include various methodologies for learning

Training includes verbal input, written resources, case studies, participatory learning exercises, group discussions, internet-based learning, etc.

Encourage a multiplication of learning and resources in sharing and teaching others

Training includes opportunities to equip participants to train others in the same things they are learning.