May 4, 2024

Two Exciting Biblical Media Releases to Come from the Salvation Poem Project

While the Salvation Poem Project continues to distribute their gospel poem, the ministry has expanded to include new resources. The president of the Salvation Poem Project calls the group, “a team of filmmakers, game developers, and multimedia storytellers whose goal is to share Jesus with the world through song and story.” Two of those stories are the Light of the World animated film and the Clayfire interactive video game. 

The Light of the World film is based on the story of the disciple John. The story begins when John is a young teenager who meets Jesus and embarks on a journey that looks nothing like what he’d expect. Trent Redmann, head of ministry partnerships at the Salvation Poem Project, compares the film to a well-known show: “Instead of quoting verse by verse from Scripture, we’re creating a story that’s biblical, probably even more connected to the story of the Bible than The Chosen.” The film releases in the summer of 2025. 

Trent describes the Clayfire video game as playing off “some of the light and darkness themes that are found in the Gospel of John.” The all-ages fantasy parable will bring players into a whimsical world in which they will bring light back to the darkness. “Our team tells me it’s a game in the spirit of Narnia,” Trent shares. “That kind of a heartfelt story.” The team is working hard to bring Clayfire to gaming platforms in 2026. 

Part of being in the community of God is supporting each other in our work for the Kingdom, so Zúme loves to feature groups like the Salvation Poem Project on our podcast. If you want to learn more about resources and organizations like Zúme, subscribe to our Multiplying Disciples podcast and hear more stories like this one. 

Zúme loves to feature creative resources from likeminded organizations! Look for two of those resources soon to come from the Salvation Poem Project: an animation of the Gospel of John and a biblical parable in the form of an interactive video game. 

February 2, 2024

How Can You Reach Your Social Network for Jesus? One Creative Way to Connect

When Richard Ford was 78 years old, he found Zúme’s discipleship training. The course provided a helpful guide on making disciples who make disciples, but what would he do with it? Richard had been wheelchair-bound for more than 40 years, and he couldn’t move across the world to spread the gospel. 

So, Richard did what we recommend in the second session of our course—he looked to his personal network. Tim Ahlen, Richard’s Zúme coach, shares that, “In 2021, Richard was really beginning to feel some health issues coming on, but he [invited] all of the neighbors in his neighborhood association . . . to a meeting out at a local country club.” He paid for the lunch and shared with them about “this amazing disciple-making process called Zúme.” When he was done, he offered his guests a few options: they could be part of a community prayer network, they could join a Zúme training, or they could decline to be involved at all. Most of them chose to sign up. 

You may feel like there’s not much you can do to spread the gospel in your life. You may be hesitant or dubious that you can make much of a difference. Many of us feel that fear, but examples like Richard’s show us that we can always make an impact. God puts people in our orbit whom we can influence for His plan, and we only have to say, “Here am I. Send me!” (Isa. 6:8). 

Try inviting your friends or neighbors for our free online training. You can get together in a 10-day intensive or once a week for 10 weeks—either way, you’ll have taken the first step to join the community

January 21, 2024

A 100-Year Prayer Watch and the Extraordinary Power of Simple Tools

This is not a picture of believers in Ghana.

In 1727, a Moravian community in Saxony began 24-hour prayers. 48 men and women enlisted to each pray for an hour of the day—within months, the small, fractured community began to grow. The community continued the prayer watch for over a hundred years, in which they spread the Gospel around the world

Today, Christian communities in Ghana are implementing a similar method for powerful prayer. “Right now,” Ghanaian leader Isaac shares, “prayer is going on 24 hours a day—women praying, men praying, children praying—and it all started with this prayer wheel.” 

It may seem intimidating to spend an hour in prayer—Where do you start? How do you stay focused? Zúme’s Prayer Cycle offers a helpful framework based on 12 ways the Bible teaches us to pray. Each part becomes a 5-minute segment: praise, waiting, confession, reading, petition, intercession, praying the Word, thanksgiving, singing, meditating, and listening. By the end of the process, you have avoided the common trap of staying stuck in petitionary prayer. One of Isaac’s ministry partners, Terry, says, “If people learn to listen in prayer instead of always making requests, then God will speak to us.” We need to learn to listen and pray like the Bible teaches, like the church in Ghana. 

The community there took the prayer wheel and multiplied it, having a member commit to praying for an hour of the day and find others to join them. Sometimes, they even use the prayer cycle for overnight prayer meetings, praying each segment of the wheel for each hour of the night. “One of the common denominators in all disciple making movements around the world is prayer,” says Terry. Why? Prayer fills believers with the breath of God and keeps us rooted in the True Vine (John 15:1–10, Heb. 4:16, 1 Thess. 5:17). 

To learn more tools like the Prayer Cycle, sign up for our free course. “These tools in Zúme are very simple,” Isaac says, and “simple things multiply. And the simple things grow.” 

Photo by Luis Quintero on Pexels

January 7, 2024

How Christians in Ghana Use Zúme’s Tools in Rural, Oral Communities

You may be familiar with Zúme as an online resource, offering YouVersion Bible plans, a Live Chat feature, and online training. You might even know about our downloadable guidebook and other offline resources. But did you know that Christians in Ghana are bringing Zúme to illiterate rural communities

Americans Terry and Amy and Ghanaian Isaac recently joined us to share how they have brought Zúme’s discipleship tools to the rural Ghanaian countryside. After Terry, Amy, and Isaac got the vision to pray for Gonja land, in the north of Ghana, they went through a weeks-long training with Curtis Sergeant in Burkina Faso in 2015. “Those ideas of disciple making movements really took hold,” says Amy, “and the guys really captured a vision for reaching all of Gonja land, and then beyond.” They divided Gonja land into 12 segments, visiting “almost all the villages” in an area the size of a U.S. county in a year and a half. They each took an apprentice that first year—in the second year, each apprentice took their own apprentice. In the same way, “they have branched out into eight or nine other West African countries.” 

In poor communities without internet, smartphones, computers, or literacy, the teams share the Gospel orally as the story of God’s deliverance, and they share Zúme’s tools the same way. “We take the tools, we learn them together with the people, they practice several times, and they get it. . . . they want to share them with others,” Isaac says. They rely on the MAWL method—model, assist, watch, and leave—to equip and enable more Ghanaian believers to spread the Word. 

Learn more about the many ways Zúme tools are used around the world on our podcast, and learn those tools for yourself with our free training

Photo by Seyiram Kweku on Pexels

December 14, 2023

7 Zúme Trainees Impact 150 and Counting

Ezekiel had brought about 7 young men into our Zume class. They did a variation of the “list of 100” by creating a list among the 7 of them totaling 100 and went out and talked to all 100 people. This got conversations going in the area and Ezekiel decided to hold an evangelism meeting. He preached (3 hours per night) for 11 out of 14 nights and 100 people decided to give their lives to Jesus and are registered for baptism. Since then, the number has grown to 150 people. Baptisms, especially in large numbers, are difficult in this area.

Because of recent wars and famine, there is no water being pumped into the city. Furthermore, standing water for baptisms can’t be done because of highly contagious diseases such as hepatitis and infectious skin diseases. There needs to be flowing water, not standing water. The nearest river is 18 miles away and no one has a car. Vans are extremely expensive to rent. We are working on possible solutions.

Zúme trainer in North America shares about a trainee he is coaching in Africa

Photo by Philipp Schwarz on Pexels

November 23, 2023

One Way to Apply the Hybrid Approach to DMM Church Integration

Restoration Church, located in Denver, is just one fellowship using a hybrid approach to implement a disciple-making movement in their community. What can that look like, and how is it working at Restoration? 

In newcomers’ first interactions with the church on the website, their focus on discipleship multiplication is evident, and the Sunday services integrate the language and ideas of DMM. This fellowship equips their congregation to share Christ through many Zúme resources and tools. For example, “how we preach is kind of similar to doing a SOAPS, or even a 3/3 experience in a simple church,” Ron explains. “The weekend experience becomes the funnel, moving people into the movement.”

Restoration also moves people to movement through their connecting events. They have communities for youth, young married couples, families, “those in the prime of life (40+),” and young professionals. Participants “can build relationships that hopefully lead to conversations that hopefully lead to discipling. . . . and eventually to simple church involvement.”

“We’re up to 800 simple churches,” Ron shares, with baptisms “in bathtubs and hot tubs and swimming pools.” Immigrant congregants host Christmas parties and bring friends to Christ, while the young professionals’ connecting events continue to bring in many non-Christians. “The wind of the Spirit’s blowing,” says Ron. “We just happened to be at the right place at the right time. . . the people at Zúme . . . are the ones that taught us the sails to raise.” 

We encourage you to consider this and other ways to become more than a passive consumer. Can you gather 3–12 of your friends to take Zúme’s free training? Can you share Ron’s story and those of others around the world? Take your next step with the Spirit, raising your sails so he can move you forward. 

September 22, 2023

Zúme’s Tools Help Bring Colorado Community from Online to In Person

When Molly and her husband started The Brook, it stayed mostly online. Young professionals in the Denver area could connect with the couple through their ministry Instagram, and Molly would spend all day video calling with them. As The Brook has grown, they have expanded from the digital realm to the physical. “With The Brook,” Molly explains, “we use digital outreach, and then also in-person events to raise up leaders and start simple churches.” The ministry reaches out to people on Instagram and online, then connects them to simple churches and guides them through Zúme’s ten-session training.

One way that The Brook connects the community offline is through once-a-month Community Nights—the next step for people who have heard about the ministry to get connected. Every month, during the hour before the Community Night, The Brook’s leaders get together for dinner and continued training that they use to develop their simple churches. Participants get a refresher on helpful tools, like the cheat sheet from Zúme, as well as encouragement from other leaders. Every meeting includes an Everyday Disciple Spotlight, where a member of the community shares how they are applying the tools in their workplace and life. At the end of the hour, the leaders are encouraged to share and utilize the tools they’ve learned during the rest of the night: a social time for the wider community of young professionals.

Through empowering events like the Community Nights, Molly has seen the pace of multiplication increase. One leader caught the vision from the training and decided to start a simple church in her workplace, despite a work culture that seemed closed to the things of the Lord. In no time, 15 people had signed up and she was ready to start.

“I’m seeing people step up in their boldness,” says Molly. “I’m seeing young professionals realize that they have more to live for than what everyone else is living for, like the fun and the partying on the weekends. I’m seeing young professionals really take steps of faith and living as missionaries in their own city here in Denver.”

Molly says that the training offered by Zúme has changed the trajectory of The Brook and helped them manage their growth well. They continue to return to the resources, using them to strengthen their leaders and multiply disciples, bringing God’s community to the lonely, transient city of Denver.

September 15, 2023

The Brook – Denver Transplant sees Exponential Growth of Simple Churches

When Madison, a young nurse, moved to Denver from Texas, she was looking for connection and community. She was a new Christian, having come to know Christ a year before, with a huge passion and a desire to grow. A ministry called The Brook followed her on Instagram, so she decided to check it out. After filling out the “I’m New” form, a woman named Kira reached out to her from the team. Kira told Madison about different ways to get connected, including their simple church movement.

The Brook connects young professionals in Denver, named one of the “loneliest” cities in the country. 52% of this very transient city is between the ages of 20 and 40, and Madison’s experience of looking for connection soon after a move is not unfamiliar. “A lot of people move to Denver for fun and adventure and all these amazing experiences, but they end up feeling very isolated and lonely,” says The Brook founder, Molly.

Instead of floundering in isolation, Madison tried The Brook’s Intro to Simple Church program. The system connects new transplants without many connections into groups, giving them a six-week trial period to get to know one another and see if the group fits together. Through the process, Madison found her spiritual family. She joined a second-generation simple church, became involved in a great community of women, and began “growing like crazy.”

Before too long, Molly approached Madison to ask if she would help to start another group. Madison had gone through the Zúme 10-session training course and “had a heart to make disciples,” so she was “really excited” to lead a new group of women who wanted to get connected. When that third-generation group went so well, Madison helped find a new leader for it—a woman named Jules. Madison continues to disciple Jules as the second woman took over the leadership of the third-generation group.

Signups continued to come through The Brook, so Molly went to Jules. “Hey, Jules,” she asked, “is there anyone in your group who you think would want to help start another simple church?”

“Well, actually, yeah!” Jules responded. “There’s a girl named Addy and she’s just growing like crazy. She’s been through the training, and she’s actually expressed that she wants to help multiply, but she’s just trying to figure out how.”

Addy is now leading a fourth-generation simple church, and the pattern continues to replicate. The whole process—from Madison arriving in Denver to the planting of a fourth-generation church—took place in just over a year.

The Brook is filling a need in Denver for heart connections. As more and more lonely people move to the city, the ministry connects them with others and provides them with tools like Zúme’s free, 10-session online course to equip them and send them out to start new churches. If you want to start your own group of disciples who make disciples, sign up for the course and witness God’s investment in His church.

September 8, 2023

In the Midst of Lockdown, Breakthrough Came to Burmese Believer

When Jacob,* an American who had travelled back and forth to Myanmar for years, returned to the Southeast Asian country, he found that much had changed. The military coup in February of 2021 had arrested medical professionals and monopolized medical supplies, contributing to one of the highest rates of deaths from Covid in the region. Ongoing military control restricted movement and closed the border to foreign visas for two years. Some of Jacob’s friends died from Covid without funerals, and his remaining friends’ lives are constantly affected by the junta’s oppressive regime.

“It’s hard to understand that this is part of the King’s plan,” Jacob admits. Jesus says that “You will hear of wars and rumors of wars . . . Such things must happen . . . There will be famines and earthquakes” (Matt. 24:6–7). But He also says, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). His presence is keenly felt in Myanmar in the midst of the crisis. Jacob’s Burmese brother says that, while he has seen many challenges in his home country, “we see the glory of God in Myanmar in many places.” Many “wonderful, glorious” things are happening there.

“Everybody seems to be questioning their faith, and in a predominantly Buddhist environment, suddenly, there’s a tremendous interest in looking for hope,” Jacob shares. His Burmese brother affirms, “this is God’s glory. God has been working in Myanmar.” Many of these new believers come out of a synchronist Buddhist background and have a family shrine of altar in their home, at which they worship Buddha and ancestors. After these new believers read Scripture in three-thirds groups and on their own, “it’s usually just a matter of time” before they decide to remove the idols—a tricky endeavor that can create strong family tension.

Normally, the evangelists would help new believers to remove their shrine, conducting a prayer ceremony with their Buddhist families and mediating some of the tension that comes from stopping the veneration of the ancestors. But in the midst of the Covid lockdown, the junta imposed martial law and restricted people to go to market for a set two hours every day. Since many people lived without refrigeration, they had no choice but to go every day to get the food they needed. As a result, the evangelists had to use the time they were allowed outside their homes to go to the market and do other critical tasks for their families, with no time left over to help dismantle shrines.

Evangelists still reached out over the phone and online, but new believers got frustrated that the evangelists couldn’t physically come and remove the shrines. Instead, new believers decided to take down their own shrines rather than wait for restrictions to end. They began to take ownership and action, praying the prayers themselves and sharing their faith through Bible study with the family members who protested. “In some ways,” Jacob says, “crisis brings breakthrough. It’s an exciting thing to watch. . . the priesthood of all believers feeling empowered to share the gospel, even though they don’t necessarily feel that they have all the training and equipping that they want.”

Find more stories of God’s provision in hard circumstances on our podcast, where our host, Mary Roberts, interviews people all over the world who have been blessed by Zúme’s resources and use those resources to multiply disciples.

*Name changed for security.

August 27, 2023

How Zúme’s 43 Languages Strengthen Outreach to Refugees 

Doug Lucas, president of Team Expansion, was introduced to Zúme by some enthusiastic field workers and has been growing more and more involved ever since. He has helped with early beta test sessions, helped develop the 3/3 groups, facilitated 16 different courses, and wrote a companion book called More Disciples

One recent project that gets Doug excited allows users to download material to use it in places without internet. They started using it to bring Zúme sessions to a refugee camp with 3,000 people and no Wi-Fi. “You could see right away how captivating it was” to have the material in their languages, says Doug. Zúme has now been translated into 43 languages—typically trade or shared languages—and that enables many more people to do Zúme sessions in either their heart language or a language that is easier for them to understand. Through that, “God was speaking to their hearts.” 

In one Middle Eastern country, Doug and his team challenged a worker to utilize the Zúme approach with refugees, leading to 35 people finding Christ. Most of those connections occurred one-on-one, like his contact with 19-year-old Nahim.* Nahim was immersed in Quranic study from a young age, even more deeply because his lineage could be traced back to Mohammed. While he had questions and concerns about some Muslim teachings, it was Nahim’s dialogue with the field worker that “prompted Nahim to realize that there was another book. He decided to give this new book a chance—this Injeel: the New Testament and especially the Gospels.”

After the field worker’s engagement with Nahim through Zúme lessons, Nahim “made it clear that he believes that Jesus was sacrificed for our sins, and that now God’s will is for us to be children of God that can try to bring all others into his kingdom.” His life has changed. 

You don’t need to understand a refugee or immigrant’s language to share Christ with them. They can engage with Zúme lessons in a language closer to their hearts, then dialogue with you about it in whatever fragments of language that you share. “Zúme gives us a great infrastructure,” Doug says, not only because of its range of available languages bus also because it “gives an outline to follow and it works whether the person is a seeker or whether they’re a longtime elder in a church. . . . Zúme is actually a prime candidate for every single worker.” 

If you want to start using Zúme lessons to engage with immigrants or refugees in your area, check out our course and select your desired language from the drop-down menu in the top banner. Continue to reach out to the people in your communities and being faithful where God puts you. We welcome you into the Zúme community, multiplying disciples in our generation. 

* Name changed for security.