For many years in Halesworth Community Church we have tried to make our relationships with God and each other central to our lives. We have journeyed together and in the process learnt some biblical principles along the way. In 2005 it seemed right to provide an opportunity for us to share some of what we had learnt with a wider audience.
A group of about twelve people gathered in the small games room at School Farm Cratfield and, accompanied by sheets of notes and PowerPoint presentations, the ‘Understanding Yourself’ courses were born. God blessed those times – and so much so that it was unanimous that a second course should be written. It was simply called ‘Step Two’ because the theme that ran through everything was that Jesus calls us to follow him – one step at a time.
Word of mouth ensured that family, friends and colleagues soon heard about the courses and we were invited to take them to other venues. Over the years we have been to Bristol, Wimborne, Pool, Camborne, Portreath, Porthtowan, Marlow, Felixstowe and Earl Soham. The small meeting room in Cratfield was replaced by ideal premises which include a cottage complex allowing us to host regular residential courses.
There are a few simple themes that run through the courses: God loves us without limit or restraint; we are his workmanship; we have made choices that are inconsistent with the incredible value that we have but now through Jesus we can be set free to make right choices and to use who we are constructively for God’s glory.
It has been a humbling experience to see the Lord take this material and use it by his Spirit to bring about real and lasting change in so many people’s lives. No two courses are the same because there is the flexibility to make the material relevant to everyone. We have a lot of fun as well as the serious moments when we face the big questions of life.
There are now four different 'Steps' and a follow-on course entitled 'Understanding How to Help' which provides an understanding of some of the underlying causes of mental and emotional health concerns and how to support others.