Consulting to Churches
One of the most powerful aspects of the work we are doing is our partnership with local churches. Live the Life’s efforts are designed to come alongside churches that are already serving the community and provide additional resources, guidance, marketing and support to help bring the community together with a common vision of strengthening marriage and families and creating positive social change for the entire community.
HEALTHY MARRIAGE MINISTRIES
We offer marriage ministry development in a multitude of ways. Below is a list of what Live the Life offers churches:
A comprehensive set of the very best marriage and family curricula from different providers all across America to serve the needs of people in all stages of life. The broad range of programs and curricula target middle and high school students, dating/engaged couples, unmarried couples, married couples, and couples in crisis
Training in our proven, research-based curricula
Options for ongoing, highly effective, affordable, biblically based counseling for your congregation*
Nationally recognized Hope Weekends, designed to engage and reconnect couples in crisis
A variety of programs held locally that build and strengthen marital relationships and the family
Consulting on how to grow your marriage ministry
Opportunities to co-sponsor local relationship and marriage education events and workshops around your community
Promotion of your marriage programs and events
Access to community events, such as Date Nights, retreats and workshops, that provide marriage enrichment to church members, while also uniting local churches in marriage ministry
Trained instructors that can teach programs at your church or local venue
Instructors for the marriage and family curriculum of your choice*
Experienced speakers to cast a strong biblical vision of marriage and family to your church
HOW WE SERVE CHURCHES?
Vision is a great start, but sadly this is as far as most churches ever get when it comes to establishing vibrant marriage ministries. Churches that want to transform their church and their community need to implement a Communication SKILLS Training (CST) Program. In doing this, we advise churches to select one program that will allow the church to become self-sufficient. In that way, they will not need to rely on an outside organization to provide your RME programs.
Developing skills is the “how to” part, where we operationalize the vision of a strong marriage by actually teaching people “how to” have a successful marriage by “loving well.” Examples of Skills taught are: communications, problem-solving, understanding and meeting each other’s needs, apologies, forgiveness, empathy, and budgeting.
In a faith-based setting, Vision communicates God’s plan for marriages and focuses on what the Bible teaches about marriage.
What is Jesus’ core teaching? Love one another! That is it. And what do we teach in marriage education? We teach couples how to love each other. For the last two thousand years, the Church has delivered thousands if not millions of homilies and sermons on the topic of “love each other”? For two millennia the Church has preached “love one another.” We now have a unique opportunity to teach how to love one another. That is a huge shift.
And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.
1 Thess. 5:14
Life – and marriage – is too hard to tackle alone. Support includes a combination of:
Marriage mentors trained to provide premarital training and coaching to dating and engaged couples
Marriage coaches who will volunteer and serve to train, care and support other married couples
Small groups of married couples, led by trained married couples who will provide a network of prayer, support, and encouragement
Access to other resources available
WHAT THE RESEARCH IS SAYING
“The reduction in [Duval County] divorce rate from 2015 to 2017 is 28%. In the city of Jacksonville, Florida there was an intervention or treatment that caused the dissolution rate to decrease from 3.3 / 1,000 as opposed to what it should have done, and that was to increase to 4.1 / 1,000….the data depicts a minimum difference in the RaPT of at least .8/1,000 from the trend analysis that cannot be classified as a chance occurrence. It resulted from an interaction that was timely, effective, and resulted from program providers in Jacksonville focused on keeping marriages together rather than allowing them to separate.” The Florida Center for Prevention Research, Florida State University.
“Our initial data analysis suggests that the COFI effort with Live the Life and a range of religious and civic partners has had an exceptional impact on marital stability in Duval County, FL. Since 2016, the county has witnessed a remarkable decline in divorce: from 2015 to 2017, the divorce rate fell 28 percent. As family scholars, we have rarely seen changes of this size in family trends over such a short period of time. Although it is possible that some other factor besides COFI’s intervention also helped, we think this is unlikely. In our professional opinion, given the available evidence, the efforts undertaken by COFI in Jacksonville appear to have had a marked effect on the divorce rate in Duval County.”
“The course changed a 29-year marriage of confusion, hurt, silence, and missed opportunities into a vibrant relationship of pleasure and trust that thrives on change and growth.”