Monday, March 27, 2006

Discipleship Part 2 – The Seminars

The Christian Life and Service Seminars (C.L.A.S.S. for short) are a major part of the Purpose Driven strategy for discipleship training. The series is composed of four seminars. The seminars are to be taken in order! They provide a comprehensive, Biblical, strategy that helps a person deepen their faith in Christ as they move from being a church attendee to being involved in the church’s ministry and mission.

C.L.A.S.S. 101 is called Discovering Church Membership. It is designed to move the participant from being a person who attends the church to becoming a member of the church. This three hour seminar covers the church’s mission and motivating vision, its core values, history, bedrock Biblical beliefs, introduces the Purpose Driven model and the process for spiritual growth, introduces the PCUSA and the church’s structure, shares the church’s expectations for church members and presents the good news of Jesus Christ with an opportunity for a person to pray to invite Jesus Christ to be in control of their life. A person can become a member of the church following the completion of 101, determining that they are a Christ-follower and meeting with the Session.

C.L.A.S.S. 201 is called Discovering Spiritual Maturity. At Evergreen, this seminar is six hours in length—two sessions of three hours. Session one covers an introduction to spiritual maturity and habits, how to get a grip on your Bible, and the habit of a daily time with God. The participants are to have several daily times with God between sessions one and two. The Second session begins with a sharing of what the participants experienced when trying to have time with God. It then goes on to the habit of prayer (where they learn some principles on how to pray), tithing, and Biblical fellowship. Upon completion of 201 the participants commit to having a daily quiet time with God of personal Bible reading and prayer, striving to give the first 10% of their income to God and to be in fellowship with other Christ-followers in a group or classroom setting.

C.L.A.S.S. 301 is called Discovering Ministry. It helps a person discern their spiritual gift(s), passion for ministry and the calling of God to a specific ministry in the church. This helps a person focus their energy, time, talents and gifts in a specific ministry.

C.L.A.S.S. 401 is called Discovering Mission. The seminar introduces the participants to mission and evangelism. All of the small groups of the church are encouraged to participate in some form of mission during a calendar year. But, this seminar goes to the next step. It helps organize the church and individuals for mission in the local community, the region and around the world. Individuals are trained in how to share their faith and lead a person into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

A person has never “arrived” as a follower of Jesus. We are always growing in our faith. God isn’t finished with us until we go to be with him. The Purpose Driven model of discipleship provides the local church with a comprehensive strategy to help people become mature disciples of Jesus Christ.


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