Archive for category: Religion (Page 52)

Simply All Access

28 Aug
August 28, 2008

An All-Access Pass to our Best Resources

With the new move, new church, new progam … and pretty much everything else new, I signed up for some new stuff!  At this point, a significant portion of my youth ministry resources come from  Simply Youth Ministry.  Basically, without becoming a commercial – no one wants that – I have consistently been impressed with the resources I get there!  Great, solid, Biblical stuff.  Simply Access is a resource that I’ve been thinking about for the last year or two and finally took the plunge on – and it’s better than I anticipated!  Basically, it’s a subscription based curriculum resource.  For your annual subscription rate you end up getting over 25 weeks worth of sermon/big group teaching resources, 40 weeks worth of small group curriculum, and lots of extras like motion backgrounds, countdowns, games, background images, audio, and more.  Getting it all in one package ends up saving hundreds of dollars (my administrative pastor is happy with me!) and honestly, it makes life easier for me.  I love the resources I’m getting and I’m pumped to make it available to all my leaders (SYM products give the rights to reproduce their products like crazy as long as it stays in one church)!  It’s the same high quality, incredible teaching materials that I’m used to getting from SYM, just all packaged together.  Definitely worth checking out!

Our first Sunday in Delaware!

26 Aug
August 26, 2008

We are here!  It has been a CRAZY whirlwind of a week!  We arrived late last Wednesday night at my in-laws’ house, where we’ll be staying until we find a new home.  There has been some confusion with some of my friends over where we are living exactely … here’s the deal.  I am now the Student Pastor at Brandywine Valley Baptist Church in Wilmington Delaware.  My in-laws live in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania … about 20-30 minutes from the church, which also happens to be their home church.  So I’m working in one state, living in another.  It’s definitely a change from what I’m used to; the Pastoral staff alone is a team of nine, so it’s an exciting change in environment for me.  The nine of us actually spent the day together interacting, working together and really connecting on a lot of levels regarding the church and each other.  I came away from it all really excited about the team that I am now a part of.

Sunday was fun; I started teaching a four week series with the youth; for these first few weeks we’re combining junior and senior high just to get me more time with all of them.  I have to confess, I was running on so little sleep that I felt like I wasn’t really 100% on Sunday morning.  That’s my nice way of saying that my brain was fried and it may have come across in my delivery – this week should be a lot better!  It was great to be with the group, to finally introduce myself to them as their youth pastor instead of some guy who might become their youth pastor some day in the future.  I’m really excited to get to know all these teens and be working with the volunteers.  There’s a great team here and I’m thrilled to be a part of it!

Tomorrow I’m meeting with the youth leadership team to nail down a bunch of event scheduling for the year, talk about some vision stuff, brainstorm some ways we can tweak some of the existing programs, and start talking about our 2009 summer missions trips!  Sweet!

Youth Specialties podcast #2

26 Aug
August 26, 2008

Youth Specialties new podcast is online!  You can watch the Youtube clip above, or you can download it to your computer by clicking here (to save it, right click the link and select “save target as”).  Read more about the podcast on their offical blog.  Personally, I love the new format YS has; it’s only the second episode, but it’s great!  Devotionals, tips, funny stuff, ideas and more … definitely a youth ministry podcast for the full timers and the volunteers!

Great talk on adolescence and belonging

22 Aug
August 22, 2008

Okay, so technically this is a sermon on something else (belonging), but Marko (Mark Oestricher) gives an absolutely fantastic explanation about adolescence, the history of it, where it’s going, what’s going on with it and more during this sermon.  It’s an absolute must listen for youth workers and parents of anyone under thirty.  I know I’ll be referencing it in the coming years.  Marko is the president of Youth Specialties, and probably one of the more well known voices in the middle school ministry scene – his passion is junior high. 

Anyway, you can read his blog about it here, and you can download the audio here (click it to listen, or right click and select “save target as” to save it to your computer).

Youth Specialties' NEW podcast!

21 Aug
August 21, 2008

I am very, very excited about this.  For a year or two Youth Specialties, one of my favorite youth ministry resource companies out there, had a great podcast.  I only had two complaints about it … it only happened once a month, and it stopped a while back.  Well, with their new guy Adam McLane on board the Podcast is back and better than ever!  The length is shorter (8-12 minutes), it’s all video, and it’s weekly now!  Sweet!  It’s not on itunes yet, but that’s in the works.  You can read more about it on the YS Blog, and find links to download it there as well.  You can also watch the first episode on Youtube right here:

Farewell service at church today

17 Aug
August 17, 2008

This morning was my last service at Boothbay Baptist as a pastor on staff; it was sad saying goodbye to everyone and getting ready to move on.  We’ve made some really incredible friends over the last five years here and a lot of tears have already been shed by us and others.  During the service, Jason Schlosser surprised us with a tribute video with a lot of memories in it and faces that we won’t forget.  I’ve uploaded it – it’s the video above if you want to see it (just click it to play it).  I gave a message, which was hard to prepare for – with so much going on and so many emotions floating around, it was a bit of a challenge.  After the service we had a potluck and a good time hanging out.  Meanwhile, some of the crew was putting together a great album full of letters from people in the church and family photos.  They actually set up a couple printers and took pictures of people all morning, printed the photos and put them in the album.  It was a great and meaningful surprise and put together really well!

Tomorrow morning the movers are showing up to pack the house … tuesday morning they’ll be back to load it all into their truck and start hauling to Delaware.  Wow.  Strange to think that 48 hours from now we’ll be on the road to our new beginning!

Free sermon series resource!

14 Aug
August 14, 2008

Hey, Simply Youth Ministry has a great free resource that is available until August 31st, so grab it while you can!  It’s the sermon series “Bulls Eye Living.”  Normally they only give the first lesson/week as a freebie, so this is a pretty sweet deal where they’re giving away the whole shebang for free.  To download it, click here.  Here’s the product description:

This is a 4 week downloadable message transcript series. Included in this file are 4 Microsoft word documents containing the full word-for-word message transcripts and student outlines.

Bull’s Eye Living means seeing your life as a target, with your relationship with God in the middle and all other aspects of life as the rings which surround it. An archer wants to hit a bull’s eye; the center of the target is his goal. Through this 4-week series, your students will discover how to determine their own life’s purpose and use that knowledge to focus on the bull’s eye and strip away the things which hold them back from achieving it.

Why I signed up for SimplyTXT

13 Aug
August 13, 2008

Simply Youth Ministry, a site I happen to be a big fan of when it comes to youth ministry resources, has come out with a great new resource that I’ve signed up for: SimplyTXT.  Basically, it’s a great tool for doing mass text messages to students’ cell phones.  Many teens nowadays don’t bother with email, snail mail, or any other kind of mail … but they text message like crazy.  For me, this is an awesome way to blast out reminders about events, meetings, sign up deadline reminders, or even goofy trivia or game contests.  Youth culture is a constantly changing scene, and at the moment text messaging is the way to go.  If you want, watch the video below to learn more about it (I don’t know why the graphic is freakishly large, just click on it and it will be normal size) – and at the moment, there’s a deal going on where you can try it out for a month FREE!  Yes, I’m still going to use Facebook, Myspace and email – but where I’m heading into a larger youth group, using multiple ways of contacting kids just increases the chances of them getting the word on time!

My trip to Uganda

11 Aug
August 11, 2008

The above video is a film I put together back in 2005 (half a year before going on Biggest Loser, so yes, I’m looking a bit heavier in it).  It’s about a trip to Uganda that I led; there were twenty of us that left from Boothbay to build a home for Aids orphans and work with Watoto Childcare Ministries.  It was a powerful experience and the work that is going on there is certainly incredible.

I have to confess, as a hobby I enjoy playing with video editting, and this particular film has been my biggest undertaking.  95% of the footage is mine (I filmed about 12-14 hours worth while there), there are a few minutes worth of footage from other team members.  And many of the photos were taken by me as well; all but three of the photos were taken by team members from Boothbay Baptist.  Sometimes people are surprised to find out that yes, we did get those close ups of the animals!  The safari was AMAZING!  I haven’t been able to share it online previously because of its length (Youtube has a ten minute limit), but my discovery of (thanks, Josh!), I can now share it in its entirety!  Enjoy!

Vacation Bible School video

09 Aug
August 9, 2008

Vacation Bible School is a wrap!  What a week … it’s been crazy!  My kids had a blast, though.  Micah and Caleb were old enough to participate every day.  Noah, at two and a half, is technically too young but I brought him along a few of the days to give Heather a break.  Basically he just followed me around and had a blast being my shadow.  : )  I think the biggest challenge of the week was all the rain.  Sheesh.  Nothing like 50+ hyper kids all cooped up inside a building because it’s pouring out!

We used Gospel Light’s Sonworld VBS kit; they put out great Vacation Bible School programs and the kids had a blast.  I took care of the skits and the game time, which was a lot of fun.  But man, I’m tired!  Between VBS during the day, and kids awake all night … I’ve been cruising on fumes!  Anyway, the above is a video I threw together Friday afternoon before the closing ceremony.  Enjoy!