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A simple square can serve as a profound reminder of the foundational pattern Jesus used for developing leadership in His disciples. It is a model that is easily applied to any relationship, setting, circumstance or demographic, and is infinitely flexible and scalable.

In Mike Breen's Building a Discipling Culture he presents several simple LifeShapes that serve as reminders of important biblical foundations for Christian living. One of those shapes is the humble square. In its greatest simplicity it can be explained as a journey through four stages, represented by the four sides: I do it, you watch; I do it, you help; You do it, I help; You do it, I watch. It takes only a moment to think of examples of this simple, effective process from the earliest things we learn to do, such as learning to feed oneself, to the most difficult of tasks, such as performing neurosurgery. We are born with a natural instinct to learn by imitation. And so it is no surprise that Jesus used this model with His disciples, whom He created.

Dave Olson of Community of Hope Church in Rosemount, MN does an excellent job explaining in greater detail how Jesus demonstrated this 4-sided model for leadership development in the intentional way He lived alongside His disciples. As we come to understand the value of this biblical model for leadership development, we begin to see how developing leaders is not the same as being a good manager. Watch it here. 

For more about the 3DM LifeShapes, how to use them and not abuse them, check out this interview with Mike Breen.

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