Generations: Sowing Seeds of Discipleship

For Generations of Disciples

Generations of disciples can trace their spiritual lineage back to one disciple, who discipled another, who discipled another, and so on.

This is the transformative power of investing in individuals by sharing the principles of studying God’s Word, prayer, outreach, and multiplication. This is a story of four generations of spiritual heritage that is still growing.

Bob Wilbraham was discipled by The Navigators while he was in the Navy during World War II. After the war, he moved to Denmark with his family to share the Gospel with the Danes.

In Denmark, Bob met Ove Tinggaard and started inviting him over for dinner with his family. Ove liked practicing his English and immediately felt like he was one of the family. Bob began discipling Ove, by reading the Bible together, praying, and encouraging him to grow in his relationship with Christ.

After some time, Navigator leadership in Denmark thought that Ove was ready to serve on Navigator staff in Kenya. Soon after arriving in Kenya, Ove met a high school student named Mutua Mahiaini. Mutua had committed his life to Christ as a ten year old, but was seeking to grow in his faith.

Mutua shares about Ove’s influence, saying, “What Ove shared with me from Scripture was clear, compelling, and really doable. He also seemed to be having fun living out his Christian faith. Ove talked a lot about people helping people who helped other people.”

Later, Mutua spent two years in France earning his masters degree as a French teacher. He taught French in Kenya for two years before joining The Navigators staff in 1981. Mutua continued the legacy of discipleship by investing in those God placed in his path. He met with a student named Paul Kimani. Mutua and Paul met regularly for one-on-one discipleship.

“Mutua really believed in me,” Paul shared about Mutua’s influence. “I didn’t believe in myself. I had a broken life, but he accepted me and invested in me.”

Paul continued to grow as a disciple and influence others in their faith. Just as those from generations before him, he looked for men to invest in as disciples. Paul met Chris Amulo in 1992.

Here’s how Paul described him, “Chris really stood out because of his hunger to know the Lord. Most of what I taught him, I learned from Mutua.”

Paul had established several relationships with different campuses in the United States. The relationship with Collegiate Navs at Penn State became a lasting connection. When Chris assumed leadership of the student work in Kenya, that relationship continued and was strengthened.

Navs Collegiate from Penn State traveled to Kenya to learn and grow with their brothers and sisters there. Morgan Forney, campus director at Penn State, observed the impact of discipleship on the church in Kenya.

“I see how you can reach a nation by investing in one individual. I had the privilege of meeting the Navs in Kenya on a trip in 2005, and that experience has shaped our partnership.”

Paul affirms the ongoing value of discipleship and spiritual generations: “The impact of investing in one life is something only eternity will reveal.”

The Navigators continues to invest in discipling faithful men and women on campuses, military bases, in neighborhoods, and churches all over the world.

In 2015, Mutua Mahiaini became the international president of The Navigators. He leads the worldwide partnership that oversees regional and 
national ministries around the globe.

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