The Funnel: Less is More

Redefining cultural paradigms for better, longer-lasting results

Twenty First Century Paradigm of Success:

A Visible Big Crowd=success

Bigger crowd= Bigger Success

Popular Model:                                                                             The Funnel Model:

/     1      \                                                       \                                        50                              /

/                   \                                                        \                                                                    /

/                           \                                                        \                                                             /

/                                   \                                                         \                                                    /

/                                          \                                                          \                                          /

/                                                  \                                                           \                                 /

/                        50                            \                                                             \            5        /

\                                           100                                                        /

\                                                                                               /

Action steps resulting from this paradigm:

1. Missionaries don’t go.

2. Missionaries are unsure of what they are shooting for. They trained in a ministry where the goal isn’t realistic or possible or advisable where they are.

3. Missionaries return discouraged from the field.

4. Missionaries take short cuts to get to the final goal faster.

5. Missionaries have no one (or only one) to leave their church and ministry with after years

First Century Paradigm of Success:

A small, dedicated band of disciples= Success


John the Baptist and his disciples

-John had a small dedicated band of men called his disciples. They were pious and fanatically dedicated. They travelled and taught the masses all the teachings of John the Baptist. The first century church would be established in Africa and Asia as John’s travelling evangelists heard the good news of the resurrection of the Messiah.

The Rabi and his disciples

-What did it mean for Peter, John, and James when Jesus called them to be his disciples? Only the brightest of Jewish young men were chosen to be disciples of the Rabi’s. The rest were left the options of learning a trade. Jesus didn’t choose the brightest. There was no greater honor that a man of the first century could have than being chosen to be a disciple of a great rabi.

Paul and his band

-Paul preached to crowds but he travelled with and loved a small band of men that were dedicated to the ministry full time. Titus and Timothy stand out.

Modern day leadership example:

The Five Man Rule

-A sergeant Major commands more than 500 men or more. That is a crowd. But he only leads five. Five First Sergeants. Those five First Seargents lead five Second Sergeants who lead five Privates.

-So how will I lead an army of hundreds? I must train five and teach them to be training five.

-It is usually impossible to gather a crowd if you are working in an unreached people group. There aren’t any believers yet.

Steps to Consider:

The Four Stages of Training

1. I do, you watch- Modeling

-They’ve never seen it. They can’t do it.

-Your disciples will come from a pool of new believers. Consider Mass Media and other large net methods of fishing.

-The crowd you can get quickly is not the crowd you want. It is often a crowd that will waste time. Ex: Missionary in Fez.

2. We do- Selection and dedication in teamwork

-Selection- Faithfulness and ability (in that order)

-Dedication- The tendency in Muslim countries is to treat new believers like fine china: protecting them from any danger or any hardship. Resist the urge! Let them go through persecution. Teach them to rejoice in it. Pray that the week in spirit will turn back at the beginning. It will waste less of your time for the future. Those who come back always wanting more responsibility and more growth will grow more and more dedicated.

3. You do, I watch-

4. You do- Sending

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