Spiritual Life

clearing your mind for ministry

So at the end of December, I walked out of my last youth room as a full-time local church youthworker. Or at least that’s how I’m understanding my call at the moment. (Always a good idea to keep listening.) Starting in January of 2015, I jumped off the cliff called “freelance” and, as yet, have not hit the ground. I ...

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Faith vs. Doubt vs. Wonder

  So last spring I led a breakout session titled “Faith vs. Doubt vs. Wonder” at Faith Forward, a terrific new children & youth ministry conference in Nashville, TN. There are great, great minds from ministry and all things spiritual involved and I’m excited to be a part of it. The outline for my talk got upended the week before ...

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Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork- Part 10

Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork

This week ends our summer series on Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork.  Our hope is that you can use all 13 principles as you shape ministry over the next school year.  In prior weeks we have focused on the first twelve principles: Youthwork is – Family Based, Congregational, Relational, Discipling, Missional, Evangelistic, Holistic, Bible Based, Experiential, Youth-led, Utilizes Open-ended Discussion ...

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Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork- Part 6

Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork

In prior weeks we have focused on the first seven principles: Youthwork is- Family Based, Congregational, Relational, Discipling, Missional, Evangelistic and Holistic. This week we move onto two more that go hand-in-hand: Principle # 8 – Youthwork is Bible Based You might be surprised at how often I heard critical negative feedback when I mention the Bible in Youthwork. I truly ...

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Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork- Part 7

Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork

In prior weeks we have focused on the first nine principles: Youthwork is- Family Based, Congregational, Relational, Discipling, Missional, Evangelistic, Holistic, Bible Based, Experiential. This week we move onto number ten: Principle #10 – Youthwork is Youth-led Youthwork is ALWAYS best when it is Youth-led! What does Youth-led Youth Ministry look like? Let’s start with what keeps Youth Ministry from being Sustainable ...

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Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork- Part 5

Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork

In prior weeks we have focused on the first six principles: Youthwork is- Family Based, Congregational, Relational, Discipling, Missional and Evangelistic. This week we move onto: Principle #7 – Youthwork is Holistic! The goal of ministry with Youth is not to separate a young person’s faith journey from their life. As a matter of fact, giving theological language to the life ...

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Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork- Part 4

Building A Philosophy Of Sustainable Youthwork

In prior weeks we have focused on the first five principles: Youthwork is- Family Based, Congregational, Relational, Discipling and Missional.  This week we move onto: Principle # 6 – Youthwork is Evangelistic! Many people find the idea of practicing Evangelism troubling. Images of big hair, crying, desperate pleas, Bible-thumping, confrontation, money, hell fire and damnation, or thousands of people in a ...

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7 Slow Ways To Listen Well

7 Ways to Listen Well

With all the recent talk in the United Methodist Church about splits and schism I am reminded why a primary skill in Youth Ministry is the well-honed ability to truly listen to what other people are saying.  Youth ministers get this better than anybody in the church.  We listen to parents, youth, volunteers, staff, community leaders, coaches, teachers, spouses, and ...

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3 takeaways from a 30 HR Famine

Our youth group participated in a WorldVision 30 HR Famine during Holy Week. Our kids stopped eating just after lunch on Thursday, then came to the church after our Recovery service had ended that night. We played a few of the event games then got up in the morning and played a few more. For about 3.5 hours of the ...

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I Hope You Dance

I have a youthworker friend who has had grandchildren of former youth in his youth group.  I have another youthworker friend whose grandson is a youthworker as well.  I had lunch the other day with one of my favorite youth who is in her 40s now.  Another youthworker friend of mine was telling me about being at a meeting and ...

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