This fall, many Mars Hill campuses will be offering Redemption Groups. Here is a brief explanation of this vital component of our ground war.
Redemption Groups have gained grassroots momentum over the past year at Mars Hill. What began at the Ballard campus is now a regular program at five of our campuses. In spring 2009, more than a hundred people participated in Redemption Groups, led by dozens of pastors, deacons, and volunteers. So what
is a Redemption Group?
Intense discussion in small groups
Far beyond Bible study, this is about life study—your life connecting with Jesus’ life. Participants challenge one another, and the Word reveals hearts. It’s not uncommon to hear comments like, "I thought I would take that secret to my grave."
Many initially join a Redemption Group to address a behavior ("I thought I was here to learn how to stop looking at porn") or support a spouse, but oftentimes God accomplishes something much deeper.
Sin and suffering
Someone entangled in a habitual sin (addiction) not only needs delivery from sin, but also to come face to face with a Redeemer who delivers from suffering, pain, and misery. Someone limping from the wounds of abuse is not only desperate to know the compassionate presence of Jesus, but is also in great need of the Word, which discerns the sinful intentions that turn a wounded heart into a wounding heart. Our sins and sufferings are inextricably interwoven and Jesus redeems it all.
Redemption Group curriculum follows the story of Exodus, with the Israelites journeying through the wilderness from slavery to freedom. Along the way, Jesus shows up. The curriculum is homegrown by Mars Hill elders, designed to complement Mars Hill’s preaching ministry—what you hear preached on Sunday is what you live out in Redemption—and draws from the stories of many who now help lead the ministry.
A Redemption Group is only the beginning—or a way station—in a lifelong journey. Groups are brief and get right to work, meeting only about ten weeks. Participants leave groups armed with new ways of seeing God and themselves, and tools for working it out over time in community.
If you’re interested in joining a Redemption Group, talk to a leader at your campus. More details on the Mars Hill online calendar and on the campus websites.