Did you notice those three words tucked up in the right hand corner of the home page? Small, but very significant words, each with a very specific purpose and intention. They are critical to our journey and yours as we make our way through life. What is the basic and most important need of every human being? To be loved. In the world as we know it, this is often a void within a person’s heart that is left vacant and felt profoundly. We long to see that void filled within you as it has been in us. People cannot fill it, or careers, things or money. We’ve all seen tons of examples around us that are evidence of that.
We say it during our gatherings, it’s on our signs, it part of our logo: You belong here. Our hope is that we provide a place, a family and refuge, where anyone can belong and be accepted, loved and encouraged.
We love our City and serve our friends and neighbors. As we walk with people through their struggles we point them to the cross and the gospel, which has transformed our lives. It is this, the golden nugget of truth – the gift of Jesus and the power of his love in our lives – that is at the crux of our faith.
Behavior is the fruit of belief. Once we exchange the belief in lies for truth, our behavior can change. Often that takes time. And that’s okay. The ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in the life of a believer is not a linear path from messy to unmessy. It’s often two steps forward three steps back. And that’s okay. But the Forge is here to help believers become what God intends: to “become conformed to the image of His Son” (Romans 8:29). This could take a lifetime, but we’re all about equipping people for following Jesus and serving out of that relationship; to walk out their life with purpose, passion with a clear sense of being loved.
It is different, isn’t it? The style of the logo even more so. It was in answer to the whisper. It meant stepping out on a limb, but we knew that we were supposed to do it. We want to engage the whole community and it has allowed countless opportunities of dialogue.
The name has many meanings, many of which have given us direction and purpose. To move forward; merge together; a special fireplace or hearth in which metal is heated before shaping; to fashion and mold with concentrated effort and care. Historically, next to food and shelter, a forge was one of the most important elements in any attempt to plant a permanent settlement. Forges have traditionally been gathering places where visiting and other social activities happened. It was a warm meeting place for villagers and travelers alike. We want to be that place.
1. COLLABORATIVE by partnering together through using a team-based approach.
2. CREATIVE by encouraging imagination in how we do life together.
3. A community that is COUNTER-CULTURAL by encouraging surrender and service rather than status.
4. CROSS-CULTURAL by celebrating and embracing all nations and peoples.
5. Surrendering our individual rights to do life together. It’s about having an attitude of servant hood; being INTERDEPENDENT.
6. INTER-GENERATIONAL through inclusion of all ages and styles of people.
7. INTUITIVE, meaning we are guided by the Holy Spirit and our relationships, not programs.
8. IMPROVISATIONAL, in that we allow for spontaneity and fluidity.
9. Deliberate an meaningful; INTENTIONAL in everything we do.
This is what we choose to adhere to in support of one another; partnering to fulfill the commitment to journey together in living for Christ.
Those who accepted [Peter’s] message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day. They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Acts 2:41-42
By God’s grace I have accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Saviour and, on profession of faith, I have been baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. In so doing, I have entered into covenant with Jesus Christ to be his disciple. (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 8:12)
And, By God’s grace I recognize that I need to belong to a discipleship community where I can devote myself to the apostles’ teaching, to the fellowship, and to the breaking of bread and prayer. Therefore, aided by the Holy Spirit, I now freely enter into covenant with my brothers and sisters to be a disciple of Jesus here at The Forge (church). (Acts 2:37, 41-42)
DEVOTION TO THE APOSTLES’ TEACHING
By God’s grace we will:
– participate in Bible study and, as the Lord leads, submit our lives to the authority of Scripture; (2 Timothy 2:15; 3:16-17; James 1:22)
– honour the biblical covenant of marriage, (the life-long union of one man and one woman) as the foundation of the family and of godly community life. And we will encourage one another in sexual purity; (Matthew 15:19-20; 1 Corinthians 6:18-20; Ephesians 5:3-5; 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5)
– acknowledge Christ as Lord of our households, raising our children in the training and instruction of the Lord; (Ephesians 6:4; Deuteronomy 6:6-9)
– and bear a faithful witness in the world, seeking, as far as possible, to live at peace with everyone, to act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God. (Matthew 10:32-33; Acts 1:8; Romans 12:18; Titus 2:11-12,15; Micah 6:8; Amos 5:24)
DEVOTION TO THE FELLOWSHIP
By God’s grace we will:
– love one another with sympathy and kindness, faithfully encouraging and helping as needed; (1 Peter 1:22; Romans 12:15; Galatians 6:2; James 2:15-16; 5:16)
– be courteous in speech, slow to take offence and ready always for reconciliation; (Ephesians 5:19; Matthew 5:21-26; 18:21-22; 2 Corinthians 5:18-19; Colossians 3:12-17)
– contribute financially to the support of the church and participate in ministry according to our gifts and calling; (Malachi 3:10; 1 Corinthians 16:1-2; 1 Timothy 6:17-19; Romans 12:6-8; Acts 13:2-3)
– strive for the advancement of the Church and its ministry in the world; (Acts 2:41-44; Matthew 16:18)
– and, wherever possible, encourage and support other Christian churches and Christian agencies in all that God is calling them to do. (Mark 9:38-40; Acts 11:29-30; 24:17)
DEVOTION TO THE BREAKING OF BREAD AND PRAYER
By God’s grace we will:
– seek the Spirit’s guidance in prayer, and spiritual discipline; (Ephesians 6:18; Matthew 6:6-13; Luke 6:12; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; Acts 1:14; 1 Corinthians 9:24-27)
– join with our brothers and sisters in public worship, remembering Christ in the Table of the Lord; (Psalm 29:1-2; John 4:23-24; Luke 22:19-20; Hebrews 10:25; 12:28)
– and uphold one another in prayer, sharing one another’s joys and bearing one another’s burdens. (Ephesians 6:18-19; 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12)
AND FINALLY, if the Lord leads me away from this fellowship, I will seek to unite with some other church where I can carry on the spirit of this covenant, in all things seeking to live to the honour and glory of my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
We are mixing things up this year and are really excited about it! Goodbye Crucible, hello FORGEYOUTH. It is for youth in Grades 8 – 12.
Here is the new format:
Week 1: Community Dinner & a movie (or games night)
Week 2: Excavate (a night where we will get together and learn about God and life)
Week 3: Event – a night of fun and fellowship
Week 4: Excavate
Week 5: If this happens we’ll let you know what’s coming up
We are super pumped for all the changes this year and can’t wait to connect with you!
If you have young children who have not been dedicated, you don’t want to miss out on this beautiful celebration! If you aren’t sure what Child Dedication is or you just want more information about how we celebrate Child Dedication, go to: “Who We Are” on this website and select “Child Dedication”.
To participate in our next one or have any questions answered, contact Pastor Mike at: 250-727-5720 or 250-478-8379 / firstname.lastname@example.org