Apostles were the ‘sent out ones’ of the early church. Paul and the other apostles undertook great journeys of faith. They found ways to tell people about the message of Jesus and took time to show the love and power of Jesus in many communities and villages. From the beginning they discipled people to live by the truth of Jesus, spreading the message and practical love of Jesus for themselves. It did not all depend upon the apostles, it depended upon everyone.
That is where you come in. Dignity has developed Journey, a course to help you follow in the footsteps of Jesus’s earliest followers. We want you to learn how to take that step for yourself.
Studying Journey will give you an opportunity to learn about working with God, starting in your own village or community. You will not need to attend a school. You will be able to do the learning right where you are, even with the friends around you. As the course progresses you will share the message and everyday love of Jesus to the villages and communities around you.
Journey is a series of four modules. In each module you will learn how to share the love and message of Jesus by planting Life Groups or helping others to do so. You can go to the next module when the practical work has been completed. We want to enable you to practically plant the work of God rather than simply learn about it.
Module 1: Village Journey helps individuals to understand the current situation in their village and how a Life Group can bring the love of Jesus and build unity. Individuals will have started a Life Group by the end of this module.
Module 2: Area Journey assists individuals to grow and expand the work of Life Groups by involving others, even planting out other Life Groups. Individuals will have helped a Life Group plant another group by the end of this module.
Module 3: Guiding the Journey explores how to start new Life Groups in new areas with new people. Individuals will have helped others to start new Life Groups in a new area by the end of this module.
Module 4: Leading the Journey helps individuals gain vision for Life Groups to be planted across a country. Individuals will have been involved in the work of Dignity across the country by the end of this module.
Each module is supported by a Workbook with space to answer questions, complete exercises and record what God is saying. This will create a valuable record of each individual’s journey that you can look back on at any time.
A Friend on the Journey is a supplementary publication for those who are supporting others through Journey. It contains practical advice ideas about how to walk alongside those who are embarking upon a journey to pioneer Life Group movements.
In 2019 we asked ourselves where we wanted to be in 10 years’ time. Our aspiration was to see 500,000 Life Groups meeting by 2029! That would mean 10 million people talking about the truth of Jesus, creating community and showing love to those around them. We know that this is a task that Dignity cannot achieve alone. We believe that God is saying the time is ‘now’ to speak and influence others, to inspire, enable and encourage everyday people, people just like you and me. Through them, many others will come to know Jesus and find freedom from poverty.
As we entered 2020 we had a plan to take the next step towards this goal. We were going to gather people we know from different nations around Zambia. We were going to provide a month long intensive training course and then send them home to pioneer Life Group movements in their communities. We would repeat this with more people and so on.
The events of 2020 sent us back to the drawing board to ask God how he wants us to remould our plans to step towards the vision he has given us. Journey has been born out of this process. Instead of a physical gathering of people, Journey gathers people remotely. It is a 4 module, distance learning course that people can study right where they are! Much of Journey is based on our tried and tested teaching. We have added new materials to help people develop a pioneering heart from the very beginning. Through teaching and practical work participants will learn how to pioneer Life Group movements for themselves. Module 1: Village Journey launched in October 2020, with 16 people across Zambia, Tanzania, Namibia, Kenya and the Democratic Republic of Congo getting started straight away with more people starting on a rolling basis.
We launched Journey with a sense that it is a sharp tool in our hands as we work towards our vision of 500,000 Life Groups! It is scalable, accessible and versatile. It focuses on bringing people to work together as pioneers in their communities, helping others to know Jesus and freedom from poverty in all its forms.