How Formation of Servants Started
In 1985, soon after being called by God to become a Christian, the SA Founder felt burdened to start up and facilitate a group dedicated to prayer and Bible study, specifically focused, to garner a Biblical perspective on social justice issues. As she continued to seek God’s guidance, this same individual was called by God to address the issues of sexual exploitation in her community. This calling was shared and taken up by many members of the group. However, as they proceeded in this vein, it soon became clear to these seekers that even though their intentions were honorable, their own brokenness contributed much to the unhealthiness of their community.
In the midst of processing through this new realization, the founder received an invitation to participate in a Twelve Step Survivors of Abuse group. It is through this participation, that she came to realize that in order not to be overwhelmed by ones own wounding or the incredible needs of those that they would serve, there needed to be a structured, Scripture-based, step-by-step support for those seekers desirous of a life of freedom. It is out of this knowledge that the SA Scriptural Twelve Step program was born. This replaced the initial prayer and Bible study in early 1986.
As the group journeyed through the SA Scriptural Twelve Step program, the founder began to understand the need for expositions on Scripture that provided a Biblical base for life applications. As God gave them, she proceeded to write explanations of these specific Scriptures that she recognized were keys to understanding and working through the process of transformation. Over the next few years, at the urging of the founder, a friend and fellow group member wrote a number of complementary commentaries on these same passages of Scripture. Today, the fruit of this labour can be recognized in the SA Formation of Servants materials which integrates them with the SA Scriptural twelve-step program.
The Formation of Servants acts as a guideline for an SA group. This guideline helps to build and foster community, motivating each group member to look to Scripture as their foundation for recovery and from this share their insights on how God has and is healing them. The SA Formation of Servants program has at its base an understanding that only a moment by moment surrender to God’s will enables a person to truly become whole and free. This stance of surrender is not new; rather it has been modeled consistently through the ages, with unequivocal fervor, by men and women who have been used by Christ for the cause of his kingdom. They are those to whom all can turn for examples of discipleship and commitment.
The SA Formation of Servants program combines specific Scriptures, the SA Scriptural 12 Steps, prayer and meditation to encourage repentance and growth within a community of recovery. It prepares seekers (who desire to deepen in their discipleship commitments) to thirst more deeply for righteousness and gives them a glimpse of God’s character so that they can continue to discover Jesus as the meaning of life and their only true friend. The Formation of Servants is designed to enable seekers to enter the lifelong journey to Christian maturity and become more effective servants of their Lord wherever they are called.
In its entirety, the Formation of Servants was created in response to God’s call to recognize more deeply that it is complete dependence on Him alone that can initiate and sustain lasting growth in the Christian life. It is only this utter dependence that can bring to life the persistence needed to fearlessly address all selfish desires that break relationships be it with God or people. Without refute, these selfish desires, fuelled by addictions, compulsions, learned behaviors, values and any preconceived ideas that may have previously been accepted at face value, are in contradiction with God’s will for His children. It is hoped that through their participation in the Formation of Servants, those who serve will come to realize that they are not so different from those they are sent to serve. This realization will change the face of their service and infuse justice into their surroundings because it is no longer those who have who give to those who have not but God who gives to both equally all needing Him desperately.