PHASE ONE: FACING REALITY OF BONDAGE

LESSON ONE:  January 16, 2024 / July 18, 2023
We might present the appearance that everything is fine in our lives, but this is only the surface, like the visible part of an iceberg. Underneath there are all of the hurts and false beliefs we have tried to ignore. Rather than going to God for help in dealing with the pain, we use coping strategies to comfort, distract and protect ourselves – strategies that come from our attempts to control our lives and maintain a good image. Jer. 6:14 – “You can’t heal a wound by saying it’s not there.”  Heb. 13:6, 1 John 4:18, 2 Peter 2:19, Prov. 14:12
LESSON TWO:  January 23, 2024 / July 25, 2023
It’s time to address the underlying issues and admit we’ve been trying to do God’s job. Our attempts to bury the pain can’t provide lasting solutions and have damaged us and others. We acknowledge that our sin nature has been driving the cycle and God is the only one who can stop it. Nothing we have done is able to keep God from loving us and wanting to deliver us. Matt. 19:26 “With man this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible.” Rom. 7:18, Psalm 40:12, Prov. 29:23, Luke 12:2, Eph. 5:13-14, John 10:10
LESSON THREE: January 30, 2024 / August 1, 2023
We need to build our foundation on God’s character and promises, not on our human nature.  He already has plans for us, and they’re good. When we put our trust in God and give Him authority over our whole lives, we can accept His power to change us and believe that He will do it. Romans 11:36 “Everything comes from God alone. Everything lives by His power.” Luke 15:11-32, 2 Cor. 12:19, Phil. 4:13
LESSON FOUR:  February 06, 2024 / August 8, 2023
“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always gotten.” Our coping strategies have kept us trapped in cycles of failure and unrealistic expectations. We need to accept God’s truth, not “my truth”. We identify the lies we’ve believed and choose to live in strength, not weakness. 2 Cor. 1:8-9: “We were really crushed and overwhelmed and feared we would never live through it…we saw how powerless we were to help ourselves, but that was good, for then we put everything into the hands of God.”  Rom. 7:15-17, Prov. 29:25
LESSON FIVE:  February 13, 2024 / August 15, 2023
Our belief systems about life need to change and we begin to take an honest look at what we use to prop up these systems. We ask God for His perspective and accept that we need to move in a new direction and repent of the old choices. Prov. 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and don’t lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.”  Rom. 12:2, 1 Cor. 13:11-12, 2 Cor. 5:7
LESSON SIX: February 20, 2024 / August 22, 2023
It’s important to invite Jesus to take an active role in our lives and in our deliverance from our control strategies.  If we ask Him to set the course for healing, He will show us  that it’s a process, not a quick fix. We’ll focus on one day at a time and the changes that need to be made now.  Rom. 10:9 you confess that Jesus is Lord and believe that God raised Him from death, you will be saved.” Rev. 3:20, Psalm 143:10.
LESSON SEVEN: February 27, 2024 / August 29, 2023
There are believers who can help us get a God-focused view. When we choose honesty over denial or excuses, we’ll see the value of having an accountability partner who will encourage and challenge us. Eccl. 4:9-12 “Two are better off than one because together they can work more effectively. If one of them falls down, the other can help him up. But if someone is alone…there is no one to help him…Two people can resist an attack that would defeat one person alone.” Prov. 27:17, Eccl. 7:5
LESSON EIGHT:  March 05, 2024 / September 05, 2023
We ask God to reveal the things we’ve hidden or ignored and prepare our hearts and minds to change, confronting any internal responses that attempt to hold us back.  We seek prayer support to strengthen us for this process. Lamentations 3:40 “Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the Lord. Job 33:33, Job 7:11, Rom. 8:1, John 1:9
LESSON NINE:  March 12, 2024 / September 12, 2023
God will help us identify the people and situations that have caused our pain and the damage resulting from those encounters. We acknowledge the part we played in each circumstance, looking for positive as well as negative ways our lives have been impacted. Psalm 139:23-24 “Examine me, O God, and know my mind; test me and discover my thoughts. Find out if there is any evil in me and guide me in the everlasting way.” Eph. 4:31, Isaiah 40:10
LESSON TEN: March 26, 2024 / September 19, 2023
We examine our responses to the people who have hurt us, the specific emotions we had and the effect of those emotions on us and others. We evaluate our commitment to being totally open and honest with ourselves and with God so He can deliver us. Col. 3:9 “Do not lie to each other. You have left your old sinful life and the things you did before.”  Matt. 6:12-14, Hosea 4:4
LESSON ELEVEN: April 02, 2024 / September 26, 2023
It’s important to fill our minds with healthy input, especially the influence of God’s word. We should consider ways we have treated our bodies and minds in positive and negative ways. Our bodies are God’s gift to be used according to His plan. Rom. 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good, pleasing and perfect will.” Prov. 15:14, 1 Cor. 6:19-20
LESSON TWELVE: April 09, 2024 / October 03, 2023
Confessing our sins to God and become willing to share our stories with another person we can trust is a vital part of our deliverance.  The burden of keeping our secrets is then lifted and we receive freedom from guilt and shame. James 5:16 “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.” 2 Cor. 5:19, Matt. 7:3, Prov. 28:13, Psalm 32:3-5
LESSON THIRTEEN: April 16, 2024 / October 10, 2023
We identify areas of our lives that haven’t been fully yielded to God’s control and accept His timing in delivering us from old ways, acting on the changes He wants to make. Psalm 143:10 “Help me to do your will, for you are my God. Lead me in good paths, for your Spirit is good.” Psalm 37:5
LESSON FOURTEEN: April 23, 2024 / October 17, 2023
We trade our own agendas for God’s process of transformation. We let go of destructive coping behaviors and beliefs and choose new methods of handling past and present challenges. Rom. 12:1 “Offer yourselves as living sacrifices to God, dedicated to His service and pleasing to Him.” Prov. 16:9, James 4:10, Phil. 1:6
LESSON FIFTEEN: April 30, 2024 / October 24, 2023
We have a part to play in the reconciliation process, acknowledging that we have been hurt and have hurt others. Our accountability partners are there for prayer and counsel before we attempt this.  Releasing our expectations, understanding that we might not get what we wanted or even any response at all, we pray for God’s guidance in choosing a time and place for the amends to be done. Luke 6:31 “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” Heb. 10:24, Luke 6:35, Joel 2:25
LESSON SIXTEEN: May 07, 2024 / October 31, 2023
God had given us complete forgiveness for our sins. We see that forgiving someone doesn’t excuse the harm done or justify their actions, but it breaks the bondage of offense and allows us to live in freedom. We don’t hold God accountable for the free will actions of others, and we let go of self-condemnation. Romans 12:17-18 “Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” Matt. 22:36-40, Isaiah 1:18-19
LESSON SEVENTEEN: May 14, 2024 / November 07, 2023
Grace is God’s free gift that can’t be earned by our behavior.  We give our obedience because  it allows us to walk in freedom from our damage. His grace gives us the power to forgive and move forward instead of living in the past. 2 Cor. 12:9-10 “But He said to me, ‘My grace is enough for you. When you are weak, my power is made perfect in you.’ So I am very happy to brag about my weaknesses. Then Christ’s power can live in me…For when I am weak, then  I am truly strong.” Rom. 3:24, Phil 3:9, Heb. 4:162 Thess. 2:16
LESSON EIGHTEEN:  May 21, 2024 / November 14, 2023
In order to keep moving forward in our new lives, we need to commit to following through with the things that help us focus on God and His plans: daily getting into His word and thinking about what it means, communicating with Him in prayer and filling our minds with input that helps us grow in understanding of His ways. We also need to be aware of new amends that need to be made so they don’t snowball and block our relationships. John 3:21 “Whoever lives by the truth comes into the light.” John 8:32, James 1:22, 1 Thess. 5:21
LESSON NINETEEN:   May 28, 2024 / November 28, 2023
It’s easy to loosen our guard against the temptations we faced in the old days. Temptation itself is not sin, but acting on it is. Pastor Rick Warren tells us to do a HEART check: are we hurting, exhausted, angry, resentful, or tense? We need to pay attention when we encounter the situations and people that used to send us back to our failed strategies. Keeping up a running conversation with God will help us stay focused. Phil. 4:6-7 “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs and don’t forget to thank him for his answers. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.”  Matt. 4:10, 1 Thess. 5:16-18, Psalm 46:10, Psalm 1:1-3
LESSON TWENTY:   June 11, 2024/ December 05, 2023
Taking time to be grateful to God for the work He’s been doing in our lives is an important part of a relationship with Him. Thanking Him for our progress so far, for areas where we especially see growth and healing, for the people He’s put in our lives either in person or through other resources and for the evidence of His love and care in the world around us are good places to start. Psalm 107:15 “Give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and wonderful deeds for mankind.” Col. 3:17
LESSON TWENTY-ONE:    June 18, 2024 / December 12, 2023
One way of showing gratitude to God is to give back by serving others. Sharing your story can motivate others to deal with their pain and encourage those who’ve started the process of deliverance to keep pressing forward. God can show you ways of serving that reveal strengths you never knew you had. Ask Him to show you where you are needed. Gal. 6:10 “So then, while we have the opportunity, let us do good to all people and especially to those of the household of faith.” James 1:22, 2 Cor. 1:3-4, John 13:13-15
LESSON TWENTY-TWO:    June 25, 2023 / December 19, 2023
Losing momentum in a lifetime of following God can happen to any believer. When we start trying to control things ourselves instead of seeking God’s plans and make excuses for choices that don’t align with His word, we realize we’re getting stuck. Our support team can help us look at our choices honestly. Making a periodic time for assessing where we are in relationship to God, ourselves and others will help us keep from losing too much ground and show any patterns that need to be addressed. Gal. 5:25 “Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” Prov. 3:5-6, Heb. 13:6, Prov. 13:20, Gal. 5:13, Gal. 6:2