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Monday, February 9, 2009

My 5 Questions

Since starting this new job I've realized there was a hole in my ministry.

I've always been good with students relationally but I think that I tended to avoid spiritual talk for fear of alienating students and hurting our relationship. What I've realized, thanks to a number of resources is that students expect you to talk spiritually to them.

Now ofcourse you don't want to only talk spiritual/religious things with them, it's hard to build a friendship on that but to bring it up occasionally when it's relevant has really helped my ministry.

So now I don't hesisat to bring in the spiritual and I also encourage the volunteers I work with to do the same because I think alot of us have felt that way.

So when a student and I are really getting into a conversation about spirituality I give them these 5 questions that I feel when answered honestly give me a good idea of where they are at mentally.

I'd really like your feedback on these. I realize these questions are missing things like prayer and Bible study but I feel like finding out what their decisions are is more important. I mean why ask them to pray if they don't even know who they are praying to. I don't mind feedback on that line of thinking either.

The 5 questions:
1. I know that God exists
2. I know that Jesus was and is God.
3. I know that Jesus died for my sins.
4. I know the Bible is the word of God and I will follow what it says the best I can.
5. I'm going to do my best to follow God for the rest of my life.


Thursday, January 8, 2009

This has been bugging me

So I haven't blogged for awhile but this has been bugging me so I'm going to vent alittle.

So I'm the Jr. High guy at NorthWest church and I've been in youth/preteen/children's ministry for a number of years so it shouldn't come as a surprise that I find out that kids are grounded sometimes. Even good kids.

What does surprise me, and what I've never really understood is why parents ground their kids from youth group. To me it's almost like grounding them from manners class. Strangly the answer to them doing something not good is to take something good from their lives.

Now, I realize that in a way it's a compliment to my ministry and I'm really glad we have a ministry that is so much fun that it is a punishment to take it away, but I think there are ways around this.

Here is my idea, if your student is grounded or in trouble call me and I'll discipline them in some way at the youth meeting. Maybe they'll miss some or all of the game, maybe we come up with something else but either way when you take them out all the way they don't get a chance at life change during the message. They don't get a chance to connect with God during worship. They don't get a chance to brush up against our Godly volunteers and have another role model in their lives to show them that being a Christian isn't a bad thing. They don't get a chance to be built up by their own friends in the faith.

Now, I don't want to assume this but the alternative as I understand it is that you don't see the value in the youth group. Maybe we are just a fun, baby-sitting time where you can be sure there is alot less cussing then they'd see on tv. Maybe you think youth group doesn't really benifit them that much. I hope this isn't the case.

I wish parents would realize, just how much of an impact youth ministry can have on students. I've seen lives changed, lives touched and I've seen Jesus move through what is going on in our churches.

I realize this might come off to some people as a: we just want your students for higher numbers game and that I'm just being selfish, but I assure you this comes from my heart. I highly enjoy doing ministry with your student and I very very much enjoy my job figuring out how to best influence their lives toward Jesus.

</end rant>

I feel better.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Fantasy Folly

I was going to write a post about my fantasy football season eventually. Then I felt a challenge (that wasn't really there) from @randyparker about who has had the worst fantasy season.

Let's start off with the middle of the 1st Quarter of the first game of the season. Tom Brady drops back to pass and Benard Polland falls on his knee, obliderating my first round pick. For those of you doing the math at home that's less then 1% of the season. Not only that but I able to ride Brady's 3.27 pts for a week 1 loss.

Another cool fun fact. Until 4 weeks ago I was in second to last place in our league. The weird thing is that I was 2nd in the league in scoring!! The reason for that is that out of the first 7 weeks (my record was 2 wins, 5 losses) 3 of the 5 teams that beat me scored there record high for the season. 1 additional team was only 3 points off his season high. Everyone always had their best game against me somehow!

I had problems in the standings too. Week 6 I won and didn't move up in the standings. Week 7 I lost and I moved down in the standings. Week 8 and 9 I won and didn't move up in the standings. Week 10 I won and finally moved up several spots (I believe it was 4th in our 8 person league. By now my record was my respectable 5-5.

This brings me to the biggest tradegy of them all. I go into my week 10 battle against Jimmy Farrell. After all the Sunday games I was beating Jimmy by .47 points and I had Lee Evans going at Wide reciever against the horrible defense of the Browns. Now I briefly thought about deactivating him just incase he caught one pass, got injured and fumbled, but I thought that was unlikely and I thought I would pad my lead and with my record the way it was I could use every fantasy point I could get. If anyone remembers the game, Lee Evans caught zero passes. Infact the only thing he did was record a tackle on an int (which isn't any points). But it was still okay because I was still winning by .47. Because of this win I was in 3rd and on my way to getting a first round bye in the playoffs. What a triumph that would be from my start! It would be the ultimate fantasy football rags to riches story!!

So I spent most of the next week in 3rd, until Yahoo did a stat correction and took a sack (1 pt) from Miami. For those of you not math inclinded .47 point lead - 1pt=.53 deficiet. I now LOST that game and my standing was now 3rd from last!! Back to rags to me.

There is hope though in this story. I had a hard fought victory last week and I currently sit 4th in the league again. In our league everyone accept the last 2 spots makes it into the playoffs so I'm basically as good as in unless the rhetorical roof falls in. Infact if a couple things go my way, I might even get that 1st round bye!

Either way though, I'm the most dangerous 6-6 team in fantasy football history. I'm still 2nd in the league in scoring and I would have a 5 game winning streak if not for Lee Evans (if he even caught one pass I would have won and would be in 2nd place right now).

Honestly though, if there is one thing this teaches me is that there is always hope and that even when things (even stupid things that don't really mean anything like fantasy football) look down there is always still hope. I really hope I can take this lesson into my real life for when there are real trails and tribulations.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Advent Conspiracy

I think this is tight. I mean the church needs to stand for alot of things like morals and such but when we work from the heart I think that's when we are really moving. I'm in for this (I haven't told Arpee yet!!) but how cool is it that this is so attainable.

Praise God, seriously.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

New Job

Hey Guys,
I know I haven't posted awhile. I've been busy.
I have new news that you probably guessed based on the title of the blog: I have a new job!
I'm now the Jr. High Director at NorthWest church. I'm really excited about this job. This is day 3 and so far it's gone really well.
The funny thing is my first Tuesday that I was leading the group was my 2nd day of work! It was pretty crazy but we got through it.
Brett who is my boss and was doing this job before did a great job putting together this group of volunteers. They are awesome and I'm excited to have them.
It's funny to give them a shout out since they'll probably never read this.
Lastly, thanks to everyone who pointed me toward this job. There were a couple of you who encouraged me to give it a try so thanks for that.
I'll be pretty busy for awhile getting my feet on the ground here but I'll probably be able to post more often.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I'm Curious

Alright guys, I have a question for you that I would like everyone to please answer in the comments section:

How do you read my blog? Let me explain with my own example.

When I first started blogging I kept track of my friends blogs by making links on mine. Nearly every day I'd go down the list and open new tabs for each and check for new content. This worked then but it would take a long time with more blogs.

Then I signed up for Google Reader. For those unfamiliar, Google Reader keeps track of your blogs and lists the new content for you. It works especially well in my opinion if you have an iGoogle page which I can talk about if anyone is interested. It's possible to read all of the new post within Google reader keeping them all together but I prefer to click on them so I can read the blog posts on their own site and comment if I choose.

I now keep track of 46 blogs because of Google Reader which is alot more then I used to (just check my link bar on the left side of my blog). These new blogs are not only to keep up with my friends but to also learn and grow and they've been a huge resource. It actually doesn't even take me that long to keep up with those.

So this leads me back to my question: How do you read my blog? Am I in a google reader box? Are you using feedburner? Some other program? Are you just typing in my address whenever you want to check on me?

I'm curious to see how everyone does it, maybe I'll learn something or maybe it'll turn out that a bunch of use your Google Reader and we can share some sites (it works for that too). Maybe I've talked you into trying a new program. Maybe I'll just find out that everyone just checks on my blog every couple weeks.

So everyone who reads this, please answer....I'm begging you :)