FORGE: A 12-Week Experience in Christian Growth
WHAT IS FORGE?
FORGE is a 12-week discipleship experience, designed to help individuals engage intentionally in their own developing story of redemption and pursue actively the peace and freedom that comes through relationship with Jesus.
WHAT EXPERIENTIAL ELEMENTS ARE INCLUDED IN FORGE?
The FORGE experience includes the following program elements:
- 12 weekly group meetings, each of which will include
- group worship
- teaching on the topic for the week
- a group contemplative exercise
- small group discussion and prayer on the topic for the week
- Weekly Scripture reading assignments on the topic for that session
- 3 one-on-one soul care sessions (1 hour each) with a trained group leader
WHAT TOPICS ARE COVERED IN FORGE?
FORGE covers the following growth topics in the weekly teaching sessions and small group discussions:
Week 1 – What am I looking for, and why am I here? In this first lesson, we examine the work that Jesus is doing in our individual stories. We explore the movements of our hearts that have caused us to acknowledge our need to seek more of Him in order to find the kind of life we are looking for.
Week 2 – What did God have in mind when He made me? In this second lesson, we dive into God’s design for human nature and human relationship. We are all, men and women, image bearers of our Creator, so we examine the aspects of God’s nature and character that He infused in us as men and as women. We also consider how God anticipated men and women would operate in relationships and in community with each other.
Week 3 – How did I become such a mess? Using the metaphor of constructing a house, we consider God’s design for building the “house” of our individual selves, including who our builders have been and what building materials they use. We explore how we try to complete our own houses in unhealthy ways when the right materials for construction are lacking and when our builders fail in their tasks.
Week 4 – Does God even care? In this lesson, we expose the enemy’s strategy of using lies about God and lies about ourselves to keep us in bondage. We identify the formative role our parents play in key aspects of our development and how their brokenness can play into the strategies of the enemy to beat us down. We look for God in the midst of the assaults on our selves.
Week 5 – Can Jesus really fix me? In this fifth week, we unpack what God says about Himself and His relationship with each one of us. We engage with Jesus’s own words about how He and the Father love us and about how They see us and treasure who They designed and intended us to be. We express and embrace the truths that God and Jesus speak about us. Conversely, we identify and reject the lies that have kept us from realizing and walking out the goodness of God’s image created in each of us.
Week 6 – What good is the Cross to me? Our rescue hinges on the application of the Cross of Jesus in our stories. This lesson explains how Christ’s death on the cross gives us a way to unburden ourselves of the weight of our own sins and the sins that have been committed against us. We learn how confession, forgiveness and the Cross of Jesus introduce true freedom into our stories.
Week 7 – What does God expect of me? In week seven, we take on the issue of rules. Is our walk of faith just about following the rules? It is not, and in this lesson we address how relationship with Jesus works and what it looks like. We discuss the ways our relationship with Jesus impacts, in concrete and practical ways, the development of our stories from this point forward.
Week 8 – What have I been worshipping? In this lesson, we examine idolatry: what are the things in our lives and in our stories that we put ahead of God and ahead of our relationship with God? We learn to identify and begin to release our idols.
Week 9 – What do I do about temptation? In this lesson, we define and explore temptation: what it is and how we respond to it successfully.
Week 10 – How do I make different choices? This lesson on choices is, again, not about following the rules. Instead, we examine how discernment works. . .how we involve Jesus and the Father in the choices we face in our lives, both big choices and little choices. We learn how to begin making good choices by engaging Jesus and the Father in our process of identifying options and then in our final choosing of the option to pursue.
Week 11 – Why can’t I go it alone? In week eleven, we examine the role of relationships, the church and community in our stories of growth and healing with Jesus. Jesus uses other people and His Church in very powerful ways in our lives, and we talk through how we make ourselves available to those ways in order to gain the greatest blessing that He and the Father have for us.
Week 12 – What are my next steps? In our final gathering, we acknowledge that the journey with Jesus is all about the process; it is not a destination. We talk about how we embrace the process and what next steps in our stories with Jesus might look like.
WHY DOES FORGE INCLUDE ONE-ON-ONE SESSIONS?
We believe the one-on-one sessions distinguish FORGE as a truly unique growth experience for the participants. Men and women in the church have few opportunities to sit in a safe, one-on-one setting where they can receive care and support in their efforts to identify God’s hand in their lives and to recognize God’s voice in the movement of their hearts and stories. The content of the lessons in FORGE and the sharing time in the small group are great catalysts for effective and empowering growth in the one-on-one setting. The individual sessions we offer in FORGE give each of the participants the opportunity to talk about how God is (or is not) working in the spaces and the places in their stories that might be too sensitive or vulnerable to expose in the small group setting.
HOW DO I BRING FORGE TO MY CHURCH OR APPLY FOR THE NEXT OFFERING?
If you are interested in bringing FORGE to your church or your small group, or if you are interested in applying for the next offering of FORGE, please contact Redeemed Seasons Ministries phone at 719.347.1840 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.