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|113. Our God is greater (#YWS13 part 1)|
|From Youth Leaders Academy on Tuesday, May 21, 2013 @ 1:53 AM PST|
in the "Blog" Category.
I've just returned from the UK where I attended the Youth Work Summit for the third time. And it was absolutely brilliant. I'll be blogging about it this week to share some of my experiences, but today I want to start by writing a bit about the theme of the conference: Greater. Tough circumstances Youth [...]You just finished reading Our God is greater (#YWS13 part 1)! Have you subscribed to our free biweekly newsletter yet? Read More...
|114. The Dare 2 Share Story|
|From Dare 2 Share Ministries International on Monday, May 20, 2013 @ 10:58 AM PST|
in the "Blog" Category.
Have you ever wondered why we do what we do at Dare 2 Share? Did you ever want to get the skinny of why we started to begin with? Have you ever wanted a video you could share with a friend, church or small group that really shared the vision that drives this ministry that energizes teenagers to evangelize their world? This video does just that... Show it to your small group, send it on to a friend or let your missions committee see it. Use this video to spread the word about the vision that drives Dare 2 Share and how God can use you to be a part of it. The Gospel changes everything, Read More...
|115. The Problem With Perfectionism In Your Youth Ministry|
|From youthministry360 on Monday, May 20, 2013 @ 9:26 AM PST|
in the "Resources" Category.
Image courtesy of shutterstock.com / (c) Andrii Muzyka I spent a whole summer working on small group curriculum for our middle school small groups. I invested hours of research and writing, trying to build the perfect set of questions and reflections that would enable teens to go deeper in their relationship with Christ. In the end this curriculum was never used. Why? It was too complicated. I had spent too much time making sure it was perfect that I ended up losing focus and creating something mostly unusable.There is nothing wrong with wanting your ministry to perform at a high level. In fact excellence is a great value to embrace; however, it can be confused with perfection. That happens because of the pressures you face in your ministry. Maybe you are pressured by the pastor to produce high numbers. Maybe you feel like you have to compete with the ministry down the road. Or maybe you could simply be a perfectionist at heart. While you should strive for excellence, you need to be careful it does not lead to perfectionism. Why? Because that could lead to:Micromanaging LeadersWhen you doubt your team's ability it's easy to micromanage them. If you want to raise up leaders, you need to be able to sacrifice in the short term to grow long term. Delegation means often allowing things to fail or suffer in quality in the short term. A perfectionist will struggle with this. Ignoring Paradigm Shifting IdeasChange brings messiness and that can be a nightmare for a perfectionist. Being perfect means sticking with a solid plan; unfortunately, that solid plan might lead to standing still. A ministry is a movement, which means it needs growth. That might mean learning how to fail forward. Workaholic CultureIt's easy to get stuck in the details on a certain project or initiative. If you aren't careful you can end up wasting hours on tasks and responsibilities that might not matter in the end. While it's good to be passionate about your craft, it is unwise to ignore your other responsibilities like relationships with God and family. Inauthentic MinistryIf you strive for perfection you might come off inauthentic in your ministry. People might see it as entertainment, or a show to trick people into believing in their following Christ. Perfection might also set an unfair standard where teenagers might not feel worthy to come to your ministry. An authentic ministry means admitting our imperfections and humanity.How do we avoid the negative side of perfectionism? Here's a though: To avoid perfectionism, yet strive for excellence, it's important to have vision and accountability in our relationships.There needs to be people and purpose that reminds you what you are called to do and who is calling you. Review and analyze your programs, ask people for insight and allow God to take control, so that you avoid the pitfalls of perfectionism.How have you overcome struggles with perfectionism? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Read More...
|116. How to Build a Spiritual Home – Conclusion|
|From Building Leaders of Tomorrow on Monday, May 20, 2013 @ 6:56 AM PST|
in the "Blog" Category.
If you learned anything from these blog posts on "How to Build a Spiritual Home", it would be that it is hard work, and all of us have much to learn, do better, or correct. You see a home is not built by one swing of the hammer, or one pull of the electric drill [...] Read More...
|117. 10 of my worst sermon gaffes, goofs and illustrations|
|From Dare 2 Share Ministries International on Saturday, May 18, 2013 @ 7:30 AM PST|
in the "Blog" Category.
When you preach for a living mistakes are bound to be made. Sometimes it's a sermon idea. It looks good on paper but when it passes from paper to preaching something get's twisted. Or perhaps it's an illustration that you think is going to work really well but it crashes at takeoff. Or maybe it's a gaffe you made that you wish you could retract. With this as a backdrop here is a list of sermon goofs, gaffes and illustrations that I have actually done/said/used in my preaching over the last twenty five years or so... 1. Gaffe: "We all make mistakes. We all have cracks in our armor. Pastor Rick and I have seen each other's cracks." 2. Illustration: Literally saying "he had one foot in the grave" at a funeral. 3. Goof: Preaching a sermon with a large price tag (that I had forgotten to remove) dangling from the left arm of my "new" suit (which I had gotten from Goodwill.) 4. Illustration: Eating a piece of hard, butterscotch candy in front of 5,000 teens while trying to make some spiritual point. I kept trying to preach while crunching the candy but my teeth were getting stuck together. Finally I just stopped and took the time to eat the whole thing and swallow it. It was 60 seconds of pure awkward. 5. Gaffe: "He had two huge tumors the size of grape nuts" (as opposed to grapefruits.) 6. Goof: On a preaching tour in India I was on stage facing the audience getting ready to preach my sermon. My interpreter told me at one point in the service, "As a guest speaker it would be good for the people to see you give in the offering." When the priest walked out onto the other side of the large stage with a huge bowl I figured this was my cue. Getting up, I walked across the stage and dropped in a five spot. The priest smiled and nodded nervously. I walked back across the stage with everyone watching me. After sitting down my interpreter whispered in my ear, "Pastor Stier that was very good...but that was not the offering plate." 7. Illustration: About 18 years ago I wanted to make a point to 75 teens at an event that God has given us spiritual weapons to overcome the "monsters" of fear that keep us from sharing our faith. A youth leader friend loaned me a fake gun that supposedly shot blanks. At a point in the sermon I had cued some guys dressed up in scary costumes (representing the monsters of fear) to come rushing in screaming. It was then I held up the "gospel gun" and shot in their direction. It didn't shoot blanks after all. It was some sort of riot dispersement gun that sprayed the crowd with a cloud of mace or pepper spray or something bad. Not only that, but it backfired in my face and I immediately began to cough and wheeze...along with the rest of the audience. Suffice it to say we took a break as everyone rushed outside for air. Thank the Lord nobody got hurt (or sued!) 8. Goof: While being interviewed on a live Christian television show (that leaned Pentecostal) I was looking directly in the camera telling the story of a girl who trusted in Jesus at a Dare 2 Share conference. I saw a hand go up out of the corner of my right eye. It was the left hand of the well dressed older preacher who was interviewing me. Since he was sitting right next to me on the couch I assumed he was holding up his hand for a high five, so I turned and gave a hearty slap to his uplifted hand. It was then I realized that, as I was telling the story, he was lifting his hands up in praise to God. I suddenly realized that I had high-fived his praise hand...on live television. Everyone in the room was stunned and silent, except for the cameraman who was laughing so hard the camera was shaking. 9. Illustration: Trying to eat the guts of a bad cantaloupe while making the point that "it's what on the inside that counts" or something like that. Oh yeah, it was in front of thousands of teenagers at a Dare 2 Share conference too. If I remember right I tried to clean off my tongue right after that with some kind of sanitized hand wipe which numbed my tongue and lips. 10. Gaffe: "Let everything that has breasts praise the Lord. Praise ye the Lord." Actually I've had a few worse gaffes, goofs and sermon illustrations...but some things are not fit for print. Read More...
|118. Controversial surrounding a Terrorist ... or Why we should love our enemies ....|
|From Deep Thoughts by Gman on Friday, May 17, 2013 @ 9:59 AM PST|
in the "Blog" Category.
By now you've heard that last month there was a bombing in Boston. And in central Virginia one of the terror suspects was buried a few miles from where I currently live. So why the controvery? I. No one wanted a shrine for a terrorist. II. It is always hard to bury bad people. III. We can identify with Bad people - for without God's grace so go I. IV. We need to love our enemies. The end of Romans 12 reminds us of this and to show kindness even to those who mean you harm. Ultimately God will be the Judge. V. There are 3 things that make up a person. 1. Physical makeup (Genetics) 2. Environmental Influence (Peer pressure, music, TV, internet (Afterall millions aren't spent on a 30 second commercial for nothing)) and Thirdly - The Will. You choose to sin or not ... Ultimately we all will answer to the Creator for our sins ...and if in God's Grace - covered by the blood of the Lamb. VI. We like Swift Justice ... I'd never forget in 1998 after Christmas finding out that a co-worker of mine from KB Toys was robbed, and murdered and his naked body left in his home ... I wanted justice and revenge to the two men who did that to my friend and co-worker. I was angry, hurt and later forgiveness came. I'd never forget the faces just days after 9-11 in NYC of those who asked us "Have you seen this person?" or looking at the shrines and wanted the answer to the question ..Why? I'd never forget wanting swift justice for the DC Sniper and two gas stations in Ashland, and Fredericksburg that I had just been and the scareness of those few weeks. And I could go on .... but God ultimately delivers. VII. It reminds us of our past. We have fallen. We have made mistakes. We need forgiveness. The journey is never easy. Our pride gets in the way. We can say "Not in my backyard ..." why because of the reminder of pain, past hurts, and a reminder it could of been us. In some ways we have hurt people, maybe not "Deadly bombing" but our words, our actions, our own sinfulness have hurt people (Sometimes doing even more damage) ...Aren't you glad there is a Saviour? My job isn't to point people to myself but to Jesus. Anyone with me? Let's love God and others together.http://feeds.feedburner.com/blogspot/ZioO Read More...
|119. Flashback Friday (May 17): This Week's Links From The Youth Ministry Blogosphere|
|From youthministry360 on Friday, May 17, 2013 @ 9:11 AM PST|
in the "Resources" Category.
One of the things we are committed to at ym360 is Networking. Our vision for networking is connecting you to people and organizations doing awesome youth ministry.Flashback Friday is a feature where we give you the run down of some of the awesome posts from the past week across youth ministry blogs. Consider it our way of keeping you connected with what is going on. This week's posts from the ym360 BlogYouth Worker Sound Off: What Do You Do For Graduating Seniors? by Andy BlanksYouth Worker BOOST: Hello Neighbor by Richard ParkerThe ym360 Trends And Culture Update (Vol. 32) by Andy BlanksDoing Away With "Numbers" As A Way Of Measuring Effectiveness by Andy Blanks Posts From Other Awesome PeopleWe search the Internet to bring you relevant information to help you be a better youth worker. Here are some links from posts we thought were pretty great.Social Media Parent Resources by Austin McCannWhy You Should Quit Listening to Your Pastor by Ben ReedWhat's Your Recruitment Plan For Volunteers? by Christopher WesleyBadgify Nametags Made Easy by Chris DavisStudent Art Wall by Colton HarkerLeading Yourself by Doug Franklin Every Every Every Generation Has Been the Me Me Me Generation by Elspeth Reeveoverheard at my 7th grade guys small group by Mark OestreicherPROTECT YOURSELF by YouthMinistry.comTeens and Technology 2013 | Pew Research Center's Internet & American Life Project That's all the links for this week. As always, have an awesome weekend . . . And THANK YOU for the chance to serve you as part of the ym360 community. Read More...
|120. Discussion Starter: Teen Actor Mulls Emancipation|
|From YouthMinistry.com on Friday, May 17, 2013 @ 8:31 AM PST|
in the "Blog" Category.
Hollywood—Celebrity gossip sites buzzed with news that Jaden Smith, son of A-listers Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith, wanted legal emancipation for his 15th birthday. "He really wants to have his own place," Will Smith said. Jaden later dispelled the idea, joking that he'd be staying at his parents' house for "20, 30 more years" because everything there is free. Will Smith spoke about his modern-day parenting style, saying, "We generally don't believe in punishment." Instead, his kids have to explain why what they did was the "right thing" for their life. When Jaden's sister Willow shaved her head at age 12, her parents didn't panic. "The rule in our house is you can do anything you want, and we don't pull the parent card until danger is involved," said Will Smith. In Smith's traditional upbringing, kids weren't allowed to have opinions. So he understands "if kids just want to have command of their lives." Young actors sometimes seek emancipation so they can work longer hours or escape troubled home environments. But acquiring adult responsibilities at a young age has major consequences. Melissa Francis, who emancipated at 15, said, "I didn't have a driver's license; how would I get to school? I wasn't organized enough to pay the rent, manage my schedule, go on auditions, work, and take care of my basic needs." Public-relations expert Gene Grabowski warned that Jaden Smith's emancipation would reflect poorly on his famous folks. "Most adults will consider a decision to grant emancipation to Jaden to be irresponsible and a poor example for parents and teens everywhere." Sources: thesun.co.uk, latimes.com, foxnews.com Discussion Questions: Does this story make you feel jealous of Jaden? feel sorry for him? Explain. What would you think of the Smiths as parents if they let Jaden move forward with emancipation? When, if ever, might the emancipation of minors be appropriate and beneficial? What pros and cons should young people and their families consider ahead of time? What's your reaction to Will Smith's parenting style? Do you think his kids have too much freedom? are learning to make wise decisions? Explain. How might this parenting style affect the kids' lives and choices in the future—both positively and negatively? As a minor, would you want the freedom to do anything you want? Would you like to live without the fear of punishment? Explain. How has discipline helped you? When you make a questionable choice, how do your parents usually react? Do you know right away when you mess up, or do you rely on your parents to set you straight? To what degree are you comfortable sharing your feelings and opinions with other family members? How much do you think they value your opinions? How strongly do you desire independence from your parents, and why? What are the best and worst parts of living under a parent's roof? What aspects of "real life" are you most looking forward to? What aspects do you dread or fear the most? Explain. Scripture links: Proverbs 15:31-33; Proverbs 22:15; Matthew 10:34-39; Ephesians 6:1-4; Hebrews 12:7-11; 1 Peter 2:13-17. Read More...
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