The Sown Network Trainings are the heartbeat that brings life into the Sown Network Groups and the relationships that are built as result of being in community with each other. We believe that it is imperative to train and equip every member of the Sown Network so they are able to know and love Jesus in the context of the social groups, communities, and workplaces where God has intentionally and purposefully placed them in. Trainings allow us share with faith, knowledge, and confidence the good news of Jesus’s love.
The trend in many churches is to offer training on a specific day or time, typically being Sunday mornings for roughly an hour or so, and the nature of the training determined solely by the pastoral leadership of the church. While traditionally this has been the accepted way of training individuals to follow Jesus, the Sown Network has chosen to offer training opportunities in a significantly different manner.
We believe that every individual has unique characteristics that allow them to learn, comprehend, and apply knowledge in a wide variety of ways. Some individuals prefer to see info and to visualize the relationships between the ideas through colors, graphics, or videos. Some individuals prefer to hear information and process that information through asking questions, engaging in discussions, or simply repeating information.
Still other individuals prefer to learn through reading and/or writing so seeing the text is far more significant than hearing someone talk about a topic or viewing attractive graphics, colors, or videos. And of course there are individuals who are hand-on learners who learn best by doing and experimenting.
What this means is that for a few individuals, sitting and listening to a 28-45 minute message once every week might be beneficial, for the majority of the rest of us, that is not an effective way of learning how to love Jesus best. Quite simply, we need more and and we need to be able to explore a wide variety of ways to know and understand Jesus’s love for us and for others.
The Sown Network believes that God has intentionally and purposefully created individuals to connect with Him in whatever way they learn and understand best. The Sown Network believes that if we can provide individuals with a choice of trainings and resources that best suit their interests and curiosity, that we can equip them with the ability to know and love Jesus better so that they can have more confidence in sharing the good new of Jesus with others.
So instead of asking individuals to sit in a pew for an hour a week, The Sown Network has created a training structure that is constantly being added to so that they can be fully equipped and trained to love and follow Jesus within the context of the communities, groups, and workplaces where God has intentionally and purposefully placed them.
Types of Training Courses
The Sown Network has organized our Training Courses, the discipleship pathways within the Sown Network, into five distinct classifications.
Introduction courses are simply starting points in exploring a certain topic. They are designed to provide a broad overview of a subject and allow the individual taking the course to evaluate if they want to explore that subject further.
After Signing Up for the Sown Network, every individual is placed in a New Member Group and assigned the following Required Introductory Courses:
Intro to Sown Network (This Course)
Intro to Praying
Intro to Bible Reading
Intro to Journaling
These four introductory course are required and must be completed before an individual is permitted to take any other courses. The Sown Network requires these classes to establish from the very beginning the importance of the trainings.
Note: Each New Member is given 2 weeks to complete this four introductory course. If the required course have not been completed, the New Member’s account will be provided two warnings to complete the courses. If the courses are still not completed within 48 hours of the second warning, the New Member’s account will be suspended.
Foundation courses provide a more in-depth understanding of a subject. Where an Introduction course might introduce the books of the Bible, a Foundation’s course on the Bible would provide more specific insight into the author, the setting, the context, and other pertinent information related to a specific book in the Bible. Foundation courses are intended to establish a foundational understanding of the subject being discussed.
Essential courses take Foundation Courses one step further. Whereas a Foundation course might explore various spiritual disciplines and how to apply them to an individual’s life, an Essential course will take one spiritual discipline and fully explore it using a variety of resources. Essential courses are intended to expand an individual’s understanding of the subject being discussed.
Advanced Courses take essential courses one step further. In an Essential course, basic theological concepts might be discussed, however, in an Advanced Course those basic theological concepts will be fully explored and discussed. Advanced Courses are intended to provide definitive insight to an an individual’s understanding of a very specific point or concept.
Specialized Courses are designed to offer training on a specific topic. Some examples of Specialized Courses are the Sown Network Group Leader’s Course and the Sown Network Course Instructor’s Course. Additional Specialized Courses might be a course specifically focused on addictions or finances. Specialized Courses are intended to provide knowledge and training on a very specific topic.
How to Sign Up for a Training Course
Joining a Training Course in the Sown Network is easy. Navigate to the Trainings page and search for the training course that you’d like to attend. Once you find the course you are interested in, select the course. You will be taken to the main course page where you can view the course description, pre-requirements and course materials.
If you’ve met the pre-requirements and have the course materials, then simply click on the blue “Start Course” button. Depending on how the organizer has setup the course, you may start the course immediately or you may need to wait until the course has been scheduled.
How to Request a Training Course
Requesting a new training course is easy. If you search for a course and you are unable to find what you are looking for or there’s a course that you would like to suggest, then it’s time to request a new course. You can do this by click on the Members tab and searching for any Admin and submitting your request to them.
Once requested, the Sown Network Training Team will reach out and discuss the specific needs and requirements for the training course.
Note: Anyone may request a course, however, to lead a course, the Sown Network does have some additional requirements that must be met. Additionally, not all courses will be able to be created initially until sufficient resources and instructors can recruited.
How to Teach a Training Course
To teach or create a Sown Network Training Course, the completion of the Sown Network Trainer’s Course is required to ensure that the Sown Network fully understands how best to support the course and course members. This course walks you through the development of the course, defining the various needs of the course, and provides introductory training on how recruit and promote the course.