Like any journey, getting started with the kind of journeying we support through Rapha happens by taking a 1st step. This is not a journey that you learn about first and then start once you have got it all mapped out. Rather you begin, with a first issue or area of interest or question. And then as you start, you will begin to find the tools and grow the muscles that you need to journey well.
A few introductory pointers:
- The principles for this journey are very similar whether you are doing this as part of a faith relationship with Christ, or not. The language is slightly different, but we are all human and created by God. So the things that heal are effective for us all. Jesus brought healing to many, and after he healed, they then chose whether they wanted to pursue a relationship with Him. We use the same principle, and don’t make any judgements about that faith decision.
- We encourage people to tackle their journey in bite-size pieces, whether deepening their relationship with God or pursuing greater wholeness. Its less intimidating to tackle something very specific. It can feel discouraging at first, if you know you have many areas of healing that you need, but starting small lays a solid foundation. Have a read of our Bible note on ‘the spiritual house’. It suggests one way of looking at your journey, as clearing out the damage (baggage) in each room of your house, one at a time, so you can find more of who you are created to be in yourself and in your relationship with God.
- If you want some wider background about the journey, check out our ‘what is Rapha‘ note. It sets out the Journey in a Biblical context.
- Some people find it helpful to write out a list of the areas where they want change or growth, and then pick one item from that list to get started with. Others have an instinct straight away, about where to start. Make sure you choose something very specific and not too ambitious!
- You will need some ‘tools’ to help you tackle the area you have chosen. After all, if it was easy to sort out, you would have done it already! That is what Rapha provides – numerous tools for lots of different types of area of growth and healing. Some tools you will need to practice, to get them working well. Others you will find you can use quite naturally. Our books and CDs are full of examples of tools to help you. You can also become part of our online community and benefit from the support of others who are also walking this journey. Use the search box to look for something relevant to your issue.
- At its simplest, with each issue you will want to do a combination of 3 things. The following steps vary with each issue – they are not a formula. You can read about them in more detail in our note on ‘spiritual surgery’:
1. Some diagnosis to make sure you have the root of the issue clear. This often focuses around your understanding and perspective of the issue
2. Some ‘surgery’ to let go of the obstacles, the pain and damage that has become part of your life, and some rehabilitation to change the way you have been living. This is usually an emotional step, engaging your feelings in a tangible way. For most of us, our emotional life had drifted a long way from how God intended it to be. It also involves your will, as you choose to let go of the damage.
3. Some rehabilitation as you welcome the new… whether new feelings, new attitudes and perspective, new areas of your relationship with God and spiritual gifting, or new habits and behaviour. This is the growth step. And it often leads you into the next issue.
- As a final suggestion if you would like a bit more background to help you get started, there is a CD you can download, that describes how to start your journey. Its one of our ‘fireside chat’ series. You can find the link to download it here. The book that is most relevant for a journey of healing, if you want to read about it, is Changed Lives. It includes stories from a number of people about how they have found healing in a specific area of their own journey. The book that is most relevant for a deepening discipleship journey is Becoming More Like Christ. It includes a number of qualities of Christ-likeness that we can all proactively welcome into our life.
We hope these thoughts give you a clue about the nature of the journey. We look forward to you being part of our community.