Spiritual Formation

Lenten Devo – New life in the desert

Have you ever found yourself in a desert? A barren place with no real sign of life, where every drop of moisture from your body seems to be sucked out leaving you forsaken, frail, and futile.  I am not talking about a real desert, though I have been to one of those. I am talking about the desert wildernesses of ...

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Lenten Devo: Are You Near Giving Up?

Experiencing Hell In Youth Ministry

Job Chapter 1:20-22 Common English Bible (CEB) 20Job arose, tore his clothes, shaved his head, fell to the ground, and worshipped. 21He said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb; naked I will return there. The Lord has given; the Lord has taken; bless the Lord’s name.” 22In all this, Job didn’t sin or blame God. Have you ever been ...

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A Prayer for Deliverance: Psalm 17

deliverance: noun 1. the act of delivering 2. salvation 3. liberation I love Psalm 17!  I can not begin to tell you exactly how many times in 3 decades of youth ministry I have prayed this blessed Psalm!  Maybe you have prayed it a few times too?  If you haven’t yet, there will most likely be a day for this Psalm ...

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To Guide You Out Of Sin

2 1-2 I write this, dear children, to guide you out of sin. But if anyone does sin, we have a Priest-Friend in the presence of the Father: Jesus Christ, righteous Jesus. When he served as a sacrifice for our sins, he solved the sin problem for good—not only ours, but the whole world’s. 2-3 Here’s how we can be ...

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There is a Season

“God says, ‘Whenever you cry out to me,I’ll answer. I’ll be with you in troubling times. I’ll save you and glorify you.’” Psalm 91:15   Sometimes I wish Lent was as short as Advent. Lent takes more work and is painfully long for the caffeine deprived congregants and staff members. Inevitably, really hard, really real ministry things will happen in ...

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Lenten Devotional- Day 3

Living in the Most High’s shelter, camping in the Almighty’s[a] shade,  I say to the Lord, “You are my refuge, my stronghold! You are my God—the one I trust!” -Psalm 91: 1-2 Common English Bible 3 Years ago, I had an opportunity to take my youth group on a Canoeing and Camping Weekend. We had our plans all laid out, our ...

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Ash Wednesday Devo- Heart of Stone

…And thus we rust Life’s iron chain    Degraded and alone: And some men curse, and some men weep,    And some men make no moan: But God’s eternal Laws are kind    And break the heart of stone. ~Oscar Wilde, The Ballad Of Reading Gaol   It snuck up on me.  This day that marks the beginning of the ...

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Because Science: Taking the Fear out of Faith for Youth Ministry

Because Science: Taking the Fear out of Faith for Youth Ministry by Kevin Alton “It bothers me that somewhere on the other side of the world there’s a kid pretty much just like me that grew up believing something completely different about God just because of where he was born and who raised him in whatever religion. It bothers me ...

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Learning the Language of Faith

A Reflection on John 6:66-69 66 Because of this many of his disciples turned back and no longer went about with him. 67 So Jesus asked the twelve, “Do you also wish to go away?”68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and know that ...

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#Social: The Political Community

While our allegiance to God takes precedence over our allegiance to any state, we acknowledge the vital function of government as a principal vehicle for the ordering of society. Because we know ourselves to be responsible to God for social and political life.  There are two topics that are quite controversial in my family: religion and politics. One I am ...

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