DYM

 

Tag Archives | God

4 Things You Must Provide For A Successful Retreat

We got back from our Winter Retreat on Monday. Man, did God move in a huge way. It was such a great time for students and leaders to spend 3 days in the beautiful mountains just below Big Bear to dive into what God wanted students to encounter. Winter Camp provides many things for both leaders and students to grow closer to each other and to God. Here is a list of things that need to be provided to get the ideal experience I wanted for our Winter Retreat:

Provide great content. The whole weekend had a theme: Let Go, Grab On. Each of the sessions would talk about something that had to do with the theme and it was something we prayed over for weeks to make sure it was the right direction to go with where our students were at in this time. This weekend we had a huge response! Praise God! (Click HERE to view the teaching arc of the trip)

Provide great music. Music is one of the key ways in which students can experience God in worship. A great band helps guide students in worship as they lead them in song. Our band this weekend was all former students and they gave up their weekend to come and hang out with us. It was so fun to have them back with us.

Provide quality time. We want to provide carved out time where leaders get to spend time with their cabins. After each session we block out 60-90 minutes for leaders and students to go and process what they just heard and learned through the session. We hit some pretty big subjects that we knew would spark up some deep conversations so making sure you provide that time is a big win.

Provide down time. For us, being up in the mountains and in nature is a pretty big change. We provided some good down time (free time, time between sessions and meals, late night options) for students and leaders just to hang out and have fun. There was a fire pit, baseball, card games, board games, soccer, hikes etc. and it was just a great time to be together. Fun breaks down walls. Broken down walls means honest conversations. Honest conversations lead to Jesus. Jesus leads to life change.

In all honesty, those are it! I think if we provide these 4 things for leaders and students God will do the rest and move in ways we never have seen. God used our amazing leaders to meet these students where they were at in their faith this weekend. As the camp director, it was my job to provide the opportunities for that meeting to happen and then step back and watch God work.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

1

I Got Nothing

I got nothing.

I’m dried up.

My brain hurts.

I don’t know what to do.

I can’t think of anything.

I’m sure all of these things you have either thought or said to yourself in the last year. If you are anything like me, you want your ministry to run at its smoothest. You want all services, sermons, events and small groups to be the best they can possibly be because you care so much about your students that creating an experience for them that they get to know God more is something you are so passionate about. And because we want the best, we are constantly racking our brains for new ideas, better ideas, smoother ideas for how we run our ministries. That’s why you come on this site. That’s why I read other great youth ministry posts. It’s all good, I like that.

But…

I think sometimes we (I’m included) get so caught up trying to look what others are doing so we can do it because we have not thought of that yet, and we lose focus on the One who has enabled us to be creative and innovative in the first place. It hit me the other week as I was trying to plan some creative stuff for our winter retreat coming up. I could not think of anything, nothing I was looking at from other blogs or ministries were giving me any ideas. I got quiet for a second and I feel like the Lord whispered, “I got some ideas. Try me.”

Sometimes we try to be so creative and create a movement that we overlook the ultimate Creator and the biggest movement of all. Sometimes we are backwards, God is our last option when we don’t have anything ourselves. I’m guilty of this. The moment I went to God in prayer with the direction of our winter retreat, the ideas started to flow like a river.

I just feel that I need to remind someone with this post (probably me), you can only do so much on your own. Give it God. Give your sermon to God first. Give your retreat to God first. Give your ministry to God first. Give your meeting to God first and be amazed at how much clearer you will begin to think.

Matthew 6:33 -  But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

0

3 Month Social Media Fast: An Update

Just about two months ago I wrote a post about how I got a challenge card from our summer camp for taking a fast of all things social media for 3 months, and instead of doing social media to read through Proverbs and Psalms (you can read the post HERE). I have been doing just that and I have to say it has been a pretty incredible experience. I thought I would write down some things I have either noticed or have learned during this social media fast.

I used social media to waste time. I know the purpose of social media is to connect with others, but I feel like I discovered that it can easily pull you away from people who are right in front of you. I discovered I went on social media when I was bored or I was just sitting down waiting on something. I found myself pulling out my phone to look at Facebook or Instagram whenever I had a spare second.

Instead, I have learned to now be intentional with the people I am waiting around with. Either if it is my wife at home, students between services, or strangers around me at Starbucks, I am more aware of needs and conversations just start. It’s amazing who you can interact with when your face is not buried in a phone.

In reading in Proverbs, the verses in which I felt were directed right towards me were the ones about pride. Proverbs has a ton to say about pride. I have learned that I would use social media to promote my stuff. Whether it was an event in my life or a post that I wrote for a blog. It was all about me. I have discovered that since I have not been able to promote my own stuff, people have interacted with my thoughts and posts more than any time before. So I can say without a doubt, when I get back on social media, I won’t be promoting my stuff but just writing what I feel the Lord wants me to share and that’s it.

Facebook makes it really easy to talk and connect with students. It’s almost like cheating really. But even more now, I realized Facebook is opposite of what it’s promoted as… a community. Students think interacting on Facebook is the same as interacting face-to-face. False. I believe pastors have fallen into this trap as well. There is nothing like face-time one-on-one interactions with students and this fast has made me be super intentional with meeting new students and hanging out with students I want to know better (check out my post on intentional one-on-one time with students HERE).

The worship pastor here at Saddleback knew I was reading through the Psalms and gave me a book called “A Long Obedience in the Same Direction” by Eugene Peterson about Psalms 120-135 and it has blowing my mind. Such a great way to dissect each of the Psalms and God has revealed a ton of Himself to me in this book. I recommend it.

Those are some of the big things I have been working through and dealing with on this social media fast. I’ll be back on at the end of October but I can already tell I am doing to be taking a different route when it comes to using social media.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

2

I Want To Want Those Things

I don’t feel like studying for my message.

I don’t want to do my quiet time.

I don’t want to hang out with students.

I don’t want to pray.

I don’t feel like seeking the Lord.

I do want to sleep.

I do want to go home.

I do want to have a “normal” job.

I am overwhelmed.

I don’t know if im truly making a difference in students lives.

All of the things above I have uttered in my mind or even out loud. Let’s just be honest, you probably have to. There are times in which I feel like I am in a dry spell and I have no desire to seek after God, read, study for a message, counsel a student, or pray. But I always WANT to want to do those things, even though I don’t feel like it.

You know what I am talking about?

I want to want to pray.

I want to want to study.

I want to want counsel another student.

I want to want to have a quiet time.

So I have to remind myself, it’s okay. Tell God how you are feeling. Ask Him to make you WANT to do those things and out of obedience to Him keep doing them… and I am telling you, your heart will begin to break out of whatever dry spell you are in.

Out of obedience of doing for God comes a passion that overflows from Him for what you have been called to do.

Recently I have been praying this simple prayer and listening to this David Crowder song from Passion 2013. It’s simple, but it has been helping me get through the dry spell I am in through obedience to who God is. The song simply says, “Here’s my heart Lord. Speak what is true.” I listen to it when I have been in my office over and over making it a prayer.

My prayer:

“God. I don’t feel like doing anything. But I want to do those things. I am going to pray (read, study, etc) out of obedience to you, but I pray you help me WANT to do those things so I can do what you have called me to do with a passion. Here’s my heart, Lord. Speak what is true.”

Some of us need to pray this right now. Make this your prayer and listen to this song and make it an anthem for this week.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

0

Success Is Obeying

photo

The picture on the left here is a message I got from a friend of the church I used to work at (sorry it’s so small. If you click on it it will blow it up for you). I went to Kenya and met this woman named Carmilla on the flight there. She was wondering why we were going to Kenya and we just started talking about Jesus. She said she was not into church, never really went to church and never really thought about going. I gave her my card and said if she were ever in LA she should come check it out. That was 3 summers ago and then I get this message. I just planted a seed. I didn’t know what was going to happen, let alone 3 summers later. How cool is that?! It got me thinking about how we teach evangelism to our students and it’s a great reminder to us as ministers.

We have to let our students, and if we are honest, us sometimes, understand this:

Planting a seed is a win. Success is not bringing someone to Christ, success is how well we go and obey His command to go out and share His story.

A lot of the time both students and pastors will go out, be the hands and feet of Jesus to people. Serve them. Love them. Share about Him. Then what happens? Most of the time nothing. There is no immaculate turn around where the person says right then and there they are dropping everything and turning to Jesus. It can be really discouraging if we are not seeing what we would call “results”.

That can be very discouraging because we tend to not be focused on the right goal.

It is not up to us if a person is ready to accept Jesus. God has to be working on that person’s heart already. God is the only one who can soften someone’s heart. We cannot. We can only obey and share about who Jesus is and pray that their heart is ready to receive Him. We need to tell others about Him, plant that seed, and then wait and let God make it grow so we can see the harvest.

We just need to obey. Success is obeying.

Matthew 28:16-20

The Great Commission

16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

1

Missing Miracles

I have been reading through the Gospel of John lately, and in chapter two I found something that I never really noticed before that sort of stopped me in my tracks. John 2:1-7 says,

“On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”“Woman,[a] why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.”His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons.[bJesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim.”

We all have heard this story before. Jesus turns the water into wine. It is His first miracle that He does in public, but I do not want to focus on that. I want to focus on the servants who filled up the water jugs. Think about it, they were given the “blah” job. These were jars that held around 30 gallons of water EACH! It was heavy times six jars. Not a glorious job by any means but they did not say “This is not our job” or “This is not necessary”, they just simply obeyed and got to be apart of a miracle.

“His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons.[bJesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim.”

By simply obeying Jesus by what seemed like a menial task the servants got to be apart of a huge miracle that launched Jesus into ministry and His name was spread. If we do what we feel Jesus is calling us to do, no matter how small and insignificant the task seems, we can have the opportunity to be apart of a miracle in someones life simply because we obeyed.

Doesn’t matter matter what it is, don’t miss out on a potential miracle because you thought yourself too good for a certain task. My prayer is that I always carry out what Jesus calls me to do, no matter the task, so that I may be able to be apart of the miracle to have His name spread like in John 2.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

0

Building Our Kingdom vs. God's

Look at that sand art! It’s amazing isnt it? All the time and the effort that was put into this awesome piece of art. The detail. It’s beautiful. But the crazy part about this beautiful sand piece is that tomorrow… it is going to washed away with the waves. It is going to crumble and fall because it is only made of sand. There is no solid foundation.

This is what happens when we do not have a solid foundation as well. In our human nature we are selfish. We are self-kingdom building machines. Pretty much everything we do we are building up ourselves. We care more about our popularity than we do making Gods name the most popular name. We care more about the stuff we have and the clothes we wear than making sure everyone in our community has clothes to wear. We care more about what others think of us rather than what God thinks of us. These are all self-kingdom building attributes. Building our own kingdom is building up our own selfishness. Pleasing people will ALWAYS fail just as sand castles will ALWAYS crumble. When we focus on pleasing people, we build our own kingdom. Building our own kingdom is living in a way that God has not intended for us to live.

Our biggest form of worship is self-surrender. Building our own kingdoms will fail. Always. Submitting under God’s because His plan for your life and will for your lofe is far better than you can ever imagine.

GOD CARES FOR YOUR FUTURE AND RELATIONSHIPS WAY MORE THAN YOU DO.

Why don’t we stop trying to please others? Why don’t we stop worrying about what others think? Why don’t we put aside our selfishness and stop cutting others down so we can show how important we are to everyone else?

Daniel 4:3b, “His kingdom is an eternal kingdom; his dominion endures from generation to generation.”

God instead wants us to join His kingdom. Because his kingdom will never be going away. It will never crumble. It will fail us, leave us, or forsake us. It is going to outlast everything and living by it through His Word (the Bible) we are invited to come into it and join His kingdom instead of building our own.

We have to stop building our own kingdoms because like all of the great earthly empires we learn about in history (Romans, Persian, Babylonian, etc) they only last as long as their king. Same with us. What we build on our own only lasts as long as we do. Submitting to God’s kingdom because we know he will do way more with our lives than we can is the ultimate form of worship.

Matthew 7:24-27

24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

2

Forgiveness…Is More Than Saying Sorry

Forgiveness is not an easy thing at times. Forgiveness is not a lot of things, but there are 3 things that forgiveness is.

1.  Forgiveness is a choice. When has being mad every fixed anything?  When has getting even ever changed the situation?  When has getting even ever really made things even?

We can choose to hold a grudge or we can CHOSE to forgive. I like to think of it like this, for every time that someone has hurt us, we probably have hurt someone else at one time by things we either have said or things we have done. We are the same.  We have done the same things.  When does holding a grudge really change our views of someone, or their view of us?  When does holding onto hurt ever make us feel better. Gandhi’s said “an eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind.”

2. Forgiveness is a command. Forgiveness would be simple if we only had to grant it to those who come asking for it in sorrow and repentance. The Bible tells us that we are to forgive, without condition, those who sin against us. Refusing to truly forgive a person demonstrates resentment, bitterness, and anger, none of which are the traits of a true Christian. Jesus said in Matthew 6:14-15, “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.” In light of other Scriptures that speak of God’s forgiveness, Matthew 6:14-15 is best understood to be saying that people who refuse to forgive others have not truly experienced God’s forgiveness themselves.

 3. Given to us everyday. Whenever we disobey one of God’s commands, we sin against Him. Whenever we wrong another person, we not only sin against that person, but also against God. When we consider the extent to which God forgives all our transgressions, we realize that we do not have the right to withhold this grace from others. We have sinned against God infinitely more than any person can sin against us.

God promises that when we come to Him asking for forgiveness, He freely grants it.1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” The forgiveness we extend should know no limits, in the same way that God’s forgiveness is limitless.

When you are forgiven by someone, don’t we feel so much better? That worry about what that person thinks of us? Wondering if we are ok with them and our relationship will be ok? Once we are forgiven by them, we then do everything in our power to make sure our relationship is restored and we try to rekindle it and strengthen it. Same thing from God. God has already forgiven us. Not only from our huge mistakes from also from our little ones. The everyday ones. We then too need to go on with our relationship with God in the same way. We are forgiven. We now need to be thankful and rekindle our relationship with him. That because we are forgiven every single day from every single sin, we need to realize that and strengthen that relationship with God. It doesn’t matter if we have done a huge boo boo, or just a million small little everyday ones, we HAVE to remember and allow that to shape our lives and actions as forgiven people.

*This is just a section from my workshop from our HSM Summer Camp that I got to teach at. I hope this helps!

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

0

How To Keep The Camp High

For both students and for leaders, there is always a camp high when we come back from a camp. It is during those times in which we feel so much closer to who God is, what He is doing in our lives and it always seems to be a rekindling  of a relationship between us and God. So how do you keep that? How do you not lose that when you come home and have it fade away?

If you really think about it, there are 5 major things we do at a camp or retreat everyday that we tend to not do when we get back. 5 things in which we are supposed to do on a daily basis which we tend not to do at camp or retreat. It is these 5 things that give us that spiritual “high”, but if we were to do these everyday we would be able to have that feeling everyday.

  • Pray- We pray everyday at a camp or retreat. that communication between us and God is key to our closeness with God. If we are having a struggle on determining where God is wanting you to go, what better way than to have a conversation with the One who made you.
  • Quiet Time- At a camp or retreat you have a quiet time with God every single day. You study the Bible for at least 30 minutes everyday you are there. This is something I myself struggle with on a daily basis and I know it is a reason in which the “camp high” fades when I come back.
  • Community- You are in a great community of people everyday. You are around people who you are comfortable talking to and opening up to and being able to talk openly about struggles that you are having and being able to pray with them right then and there.
  • Worship- There is worship session every single day (usually in the form of music). But its time where you and God connect and you can just worship Him for who He is.
  • Laugh- We let loose at a camp or retreat because we are not worrying about anything besides just being there with God. Jesus says why worry about tomorrow, today has enough worry for its self. When we are at camp or retreat we can just have fun and laugh with everyone around us and not worry about anything.

All of these things happen at retreats and that’s why we get that extra close feeling to God. Because these are the things that we are called to do on a daily basis, so that “camp high” doesn’t need to go away…ever! We have to stop doing these things just at camps and retreats and not on a everyday basis. No wonder we don’t have that feeling when we come back because we forget to do this when we are back.

That’s my goal as we just got back from camp, to continue to do these things to keep that “camp high”.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

0

Relational Student Ministry Goals

Intentional, relational, authentic ministry. I would like to think this is the goal for everyone and anyone in youth ministry. Students are the most accurate “B.S. Detectors” and can sniff out a fake from a mile away. One thing that has been on my heart lately is being real, genuine and intentional about relationships with students that I know well and students I just met. Whether is was the sleep over I had at my apartment for some of my small group guys who I know really well and love or the students I met for the first time at our 80′s Ice Skating Event, being intentional about the relationship I start and develop with them is key. What does it say?

  • I Care About You- In any case with a student, whether how well you know them, any step you take into getting to know them a little better than you already do, shows them that you care. It is really easy just to say hi during the service, but to ask them about themselves, how their relationship is with God and simply just have fun, shows how much they mean to you and that you care for them.
  • I’m Not Just Another Face- I am really bad with names. I mean, I’m awful with names. It’s embarrassing. Being intentional about remembering a new persons name will go further than you can even think of. Just the other day, another leader told me that a student who I met once before, who has not been to church in a month, said I remembered her name and it made her feel so welcome and loved that she had to tell a leader and was glad she was back. It then sparked a great conversation. Make their face known.
  • You’re Proud of Me? - I have been making a point to tell the students who are serving in our ministry to help me pull off our weekends that I am so thankful for what they do and that they contribute so much to the weekend and that I am proud. Never have I ever said that and have someone be upset or angry. Their face lights up. These can be a game changer knowing that you, their leader, are proud of what they are doing.
  • You’re a Nerd. Me Too. Let’s Be Friends- Sometimes to break the ice, you have to look stupid and make them laugh. Since laughing is one of my favorite things, I like to assume everyone else likes to as well. Sometimes you have to look dumb and not care what others think. This works for me at least. For example, I met a ton of new students at our last event. I showed all of them a new dance move I made up called “The Knowles” (a video will be made someday with this, I promise). I looked dumb, but I got the whole group of new students to do it as well and spread the word. 2 days later I got a Facebook message about how excited they were that they made a new friend by doing the dance move to a student, and a friendship started.

These are my own personal intentional relational goals that I am working on. If you have any personal goals as well, please share! We are all in this together.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

3

Blotted Mercy

When you look at the ink blot above, what do you see? What do you focus on? The blot? The space around it? What?

In prayer I think we sometimes focus on all of our problems and not the widespread mercy of God. For example, if there was a blank white page and there was an ink blot right in the middle of it, because the page was blank, the ink blot will stand out to us and that will be the thing that we focus on. But the ink blot doesn’t take over the whole page, its just a small section compared to the rest of the page. There is still a lot of white on the page. The ink blot is our sin, and the rest of the page is God’s mercy. In prayer we only focus on the ink blot, our sin, and that’s the one thing we focus on. The rest of paper, which is far bigger than the ink blot, is God’s mercy, and that is what we should be focusing on. We always pray for and focus on our sins, which is only tiny compared to the rest of the page of God’s mercy. THAT’S WHAT OUR PRAYER SHOULD BE FOCUSED ON, THE VAST MERCY THAT SURROUNDS OUR SIN.

Proverbs 28:13

People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

2

I Would Rather Sink

We all know the story of Jesus walking on water. Jesus meets his disciples in the middle of the lake and Peter calls out to Jesus asking him to come out on the water as well. Peter steps out of the boat and begins to walk on water but then gets scared and sinks and has to be saved by Jesus. Fail.

In the Gospels, Peter seems to be better known for his failures. But if you compare his actions to the rest of the disciples in the walking on water scene, he is the only one who actually steps out of the boat. He stepped out of the boat when Jesus called when it made no sense.

We always forget about the disciples in this story. Where were they? In the boat, not doing a thing. Just watching Peter step out and do an amazing feat. Doesn’t mater what happened with Peter because Peter still gets to say he walked on water. No one else but Jesus can say that. Because the other disciples stayed in the boat, maybe that is why we forget about them in the story. They were spectators.

Sometimes following God, He bids us to take a risk and step out of the boat. I would rather sink than stay on the boat. But in the end, these risks reap the greatest reward. If it weren’t for the risks that Peter took he wouldn’t have experienced the incredible things that he did.

I want to have an experience like Peter, not the other disciples. With my life and my ministry, I want to try to not get into the same routine and play things safe when it comes to my relationship with God and my ministry for Him. I am trying to constantly step out for Him and try new things knowing that if I am doing them faithfully, God will pull me up out of the deep water just like He did with Peter.

Let that be a challenge to us all.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

0

31 Sermon Series Topic Ideas

A couple of weeks ago, we met to lay out our Fall series schedule for Saddleback High School Ministry. What came to the table was amazing. Here are just a few that we considered. Hope these help in any way or spark some ideas for some amazing series. Our fall series is still being worked on, so I’m sure we will get them up soon:

  • Do Something
  • Taboo: What Church Isn’t Talking About
  • Things Jesus Didn’t Say
  • Grace Mob
  • Brotherly Love (cross out love, over it “wars”)
  • How To Survive High School Guide
  • Identity Theft
  • YOLO
  • Irrestistible Revolution
  • Life Apps (going off the iPhone. Could be fruits fo the Spirit or the Bible is the first and best app)
  • I Want Your…
  • Poser
  • Can You Hear Me?
  • Rewind
  • WWID? – What Would I Do?
  • I am _______________
  • Jesus: Liar, Lunatic or Lord
  • I Am Legend
  • Abandon Ship! – abandon sin, self
  • Wasted – Growth, Heaven, Hypocrisy, Possessions
  • Forever Alone
  • God is…
  • Eyes Wide Shut
  • He > I
  • > Greater Than
  • Booty. God. Booty (From a blog post of Jon Acuff)
  • Nothing – God makes something out of nothing. If you are nothing, God can make something out of you
  • AWE/SOME – God is awe/all, we are some
  • Get Dirty
  • IDK (I Don’t Know)
  • Things Jesus Did Say

If something sparks you that creates another amazing series, let me know! I would love to hear what you came up with as well!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

8

God Uses Idiots

Acts 4:13 says, “13 When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.”

Peter and John just got done doing a miracle and people were amazed. People were blown away and noted that these men, ordinary, non-schooled men, idiots to the world because they were just fishermen once before, had been with Jesus, and Jesus used them to change the world and perform this miracle. People took note of them because they had been in love with Jesus.

These men were “idiots” of their day. They didn’t meet up to the religious elite because they didn’t go to school for it. But it never mattered. They just lived for Jesus and obeyed, and God used them.

God is looking to use idiots. The “not good enough”. And I am glad… because I am one of them. I’m an idiot, I promise you that. God is in the habit of using people who are willing to follow Him no matter what the case.

People that do not ask, “What do you need me to do? Yes, that sounds good and safe I’ll do that” but rather people that the answer is, “Yes Lord! Now what will you have me do.” And then they do just do it.

People will look at you according to the world’s expectations and qualifications, and judge you off of that. Jesus can and will use you no matter what condition you come in as long as you are willing to obey.

Craig Groeshel said, “You are not who others say you are. You are who God says you are. And He says you are His!” It doesn’t matter what anyone else tells you you are just as long as you know who God says you are. God uses everyone and anyone, no matter the past or future, just as long as we are willing to be so passionately following Jesus that the world thinks of us as idiots.

Is anything impossible for our God?

It does not matter who you are, what you have done, whether you think you are capable or not, God loves to use idiots to move in big ways. I’m glad I am an idiot. I’m glad I realize that I have messed up, done stupid things in the past but know God can still use me in a huge way.

Same goes for you! Be an idiot. We all are, and let God use you and define you.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

1

Volunteers Feel They Have Ownership On Stage

Like I have said in some previous posts, one of my goals about running a successful service is making sure everything goes as smooth as possible with no dead time. Usually to make that happen you need to have people who are comfortable on stage and know how to work the crowd, someone who feels natural up there and not awkward. But that also means the same people will be up on stage all of the time and that can get real boring. So you have to sacrifice smoothness (until volunteers are used to being on stage) for the development of leaders.

One of the things I try to do is trying to get as many people on stage as possible. If you were on stage the week before, you wont be on stage the next week. New faces, fresh dialogue. Some people are more natural than others but the only way to get better up there is actually be up there.

Having volunteers up on stage can be the best thing for them and the ministry overall, and here is why:

  • The volunteer, even though might stumble through the whole intro or welcome (at first) will get them up on stage and confident that they are apart of the ministry. It will give them ownership of the ministry.
  • Students will see them up there, and know that they are apart of the ministry and it can break down any walls that were there before. I know for me, being on stage makes students feel they can come up and talk to me because they feel like they know me, because I show who I am on stage and it breaks down some barriers. It will do the same for your volunteers their relationships with the students.
  • The students will see you are not the only one they can talk to and that there are other people involved in ministry here.
  • It will give the volunteer more confidence to talk to students who they do not know. They know they were on stage and they were seen by the students so they wont be the “creeper” coming up to them.
  • You will develop confidence in leadership and ownership within that volunteer.

All of these reasons are why I want to get our adult volunteers some stage time to get some face time in front of the students. I think this is important and does some amazing work when it comes to them and ministry.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

0