Engage the Battle
September 5-7, 2013: ”Engage the Battle’ & “Master’s Plan for Fatherhood” At this conference Forge Ministries will have speakers, exhibitors and volunteers that will give you and your family confidence to “engage the battle” along with resources for the beginner and veteran homeschoolers. What battle is there you ask? This battle that rages against the family. Today, the definition of family is under attack. Today, the definition of what it means to be a man and father are being threatened. We pray this conference will provide you encouragement, guidance and instruction as you enter into this battle. To help us in this endeavor, we are excited and honored to partner with NCFIC (National Center for Family Integrated Churches) for our 2013 conference. We have 2 ‘tracks’ scheduled. FORGE Ministries will be hosting the “Engage the Battle” themed track and NCFIC will be hosting “The Master’s Plan for Fatherhood” themed track.
Interview with Michael Moody, Director of Forge Ministries
Reading the Forge brochure and all, it seems to me that you have founded Forge to address some particular problem or set of problems. What is the greatest problem you see facing the church in our age?
Some problems facing the church today are: apathy, laziness, and selfishness. This is not a blanket statement for all those in the church but these are some issues that should be addressed. There is apathy or indifference to the moral degradation affecting not only our nation but the world. There is laziness which is keeping people from doing the work God has called us to do. There is selfishness that is rampant keeping people focused on only what would be best for themselves.
Our hope is to get families ‘Engaged in the Battle’. It’s time to wake up, and get involved. I see this conference, and hopefully the ones in the future, as training grounds. We want young men, young women, dads and moms to build a better foundation, a Christian Biblical foundation, for their homeschooling and, indeed, all of life. We want them to get prepared for the battles, and be encouraged to stay in the fight.
What is the greatest problem you see facing homeschoolers in particular?
Thousands and thousands of families are homeschooling but many have no foundation. Parents are choosing to home educate for a number of reasons: they want their child to excel academically; they want their child sheltered from drugs and kept safe; they want to give their child individual attention because of a learning disability; and some parents want to pass along their own morals/beliefs. These are all good reasons to home educate but if you don’t have the correct foundation, all these great ideas, all these reasons to keep your child home, will mean nothing. If you want your child to attend an Ivy League school, you may get them into Harvard but where is his heart? You may keep your child safe and away from the bullies and peer pressure but how does she cope with pain, heartache, and death when she’s on her own? You may be able to teach your child to read but what will he be learning?
The foundation that we need to lay is built upon the Lord Jesus Christ. Deuteronomy 6:4-9 commands us to love the Lord our God, and then teach your children how to love Him too. Jesus Christ says in Matthew 22:37 that “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.”
Homeschooling parents across the country are finding with shock that their second generation: the children they homeschooled and raised in the faith, are leaving homeschooling, and, in some cases, even leaving the faith itself. We believe that part of the reason for this is that these parents have not truly built on the right foundation. Christ assures us that a house, built on the wrong foundation (or no foundation at all) will be washed away when the storms come.
How is Forge meant to help these problems?
Our vision is to help restore biblical education in the home by strengthening parents in the discipling of their children for Jesus Christ by providing biblical encouragement, guidance and instruction. Our hope is that our conferences, events, and seminars will fill parents with the strength of purpose in preparation for the significant task of homeschooling their children. As we seek to educate at our conferences, we hope that we pass on a foundation which will remain for generations.
I understand Forge is going to be having a conference. What is Forge going to be doing between conferences?
The biggest task will be planning for upcoming events. We hope to have several events each year all across the state of Texas.
What would you say to convince the busy homeschooling family to attend Forge instead of or in addition to the various other conferences and ministry opportunities that threaten to fill their time?
There are a lot of great organizations across the state offering a number of homeschool conventions. We are not trying to compete with them or duplicate another convention. In fact, we are doing “conferences” not “conventions”. We are message driven. Our focus is to spread the good news of Jesus Christ, to help families build upon the correct foundation, and to offer our attendees notable speakers with encouraging and convicting messages. Those asking questions about this ‘movement’ should come to learn more. New homeschooling families need to come to our events to get instructed. The homeschooling parents with a few years under their belt need to come to get reenergized and encouraged. The veterans or seasoned parents need to attend so they can impart wisdom to those following behind. FORGE is also hoping that our conferences will be a time for families to experience lots of fellowship with other families.
What is your particular audience for Forge? the church in general? Homeschoolers? Reformed, full quiver, family integrated homeschoolers?
Our audience is anyone who wants to come. Our message is that home education is a vital part of Biblical discipleship. This message is good for everyone. We are a homeschool organization but it’s not just about homeschooling. Homeschooling is one avenue that I believe parents are engaging in the battle. We feel that biblical discipleship includes other topics such as: the biblical definition of marriage; the sanctity of life; the roles of men, women, and children; the biblical church; the state; debt; mentorship; apprenticeship; family business,… the list is endless. Laying the correct foundation will give us the correct biblical worldview when addressing these issues.
Where do you see Forge going in five years? ten years?
Only the Lord knows….. But I hope we are still doing conferences, we are still affecting people’s lives, and that we are changing the family for the better. It all comes down to what foundation you are building on. With FORGE, Jesus Christ is the rock we are built upon.
Note from the ‘author’:
I would like to give you another reason to be there: so we can get together. My family is planning to be at the conference… and I’m not coming for the speeches (I can get those on CD). I am coming for the wonderful experience it always is to network with Christians from all over. As a special bonus I will introduce you to Michael Moody, the director! Can’t get that offer just anywhere, eh?
We pray that God will bless the work of FORGE and likeminded organizations as they work on helping equip our families for the battles to come.