Archive for category: Youth Ministry (Page 61)

Biggest Loser Couples – Black vs. Blue

29 Jan
January 29, 2008

Well, I just finished watching the latest episode and I’m fighting off my frustration cravings by blogging!  But I’ll get to that later …

Here’s what I liked: I loved the soda challenge.  People need to understand how much crap is in soda.  It absolutely kills me seeing how much regular soda (in other words, piles of sugar) people drink every day!  Just today, while at the local after school kids’ program I watched a middle school student buy not one, but TWO three liter bottles of regular soda because the store next to the school had them on sale for 99 cents.  Now, granted, he was sharing … but the kids were all chugging and that stuff was disappearing.  Literally cup fulls of sugar.  Another trio of kids had chipped in money to buy a six pound bag of candy.  Six pounds.  In all honesty, I don’t expect middle school kids to make healthy choices; they don’t have the life perspective to get how serious it is yet … but I do think that businesses are irresponsible to sell three liter bottles of soda and six pound bags of candy to eleven year olds.  Seriously.  But that’s a whole different rant …

I loved the teamwork, the support, the working together, and all of that.  Beautiful moment; Kelly telling the others that she doesn’t want to go home, but if they’re leaning towards voting her or her ex-husband off, to vote her off because he needs it more.  When do you see that on reality tv?  Love and self sacrifice is a beautiful thing.  I did feel bad for Jenn being sent home; but in the weeks that she has had, she has done amazing!

What killed me was the team picking.  And it probably brought back some of my own feelings of rejection from season three (although it wasn’t quite the same).  Absolutely brutal and cruel to make overweight people be choosen on camera like that.  The sense of rejection, disappointment and hurt are awful – especially when you consider that these people are struggling with emotional eating related issues already.  That is obviously putting the drama of tv ahead of the best interests of the contestants.  And while they’ve had contestants changing up the teams every season, it’s been different; they go away, rearrange the teams and then announce the whole roster – not literally picking their preferences right there.  And having it come from the trainers?  Absolutely brutal.  Cruel.  Heartless.  That kind of thing should never have been dealt to them from the trainers – not that it was the trainers fault, they have to roll with the show.  But it wasn’t right, and I think Jillians’ reaction showed that she understood that.

The new Veggie Tales movie

27 Jan
January 27, 2008

We had some insanity in church this morning!  As part of the hype for the arrival of the new Veggie Tales movie to our local theater, The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything, I have some give aways that I got from Big Idea (creators of Veggie Tales).  I’m actually excited about the movie – and it turns out, our theater is the only one that will have shown it in the region (what a shame!), so we should have a decent turnout.  Next week I’m giving away stickers and coloring pages, but this week I had these nine card trading card sheets, which we gave out to all the kids.  Let me make this totally clear: every kid got the exact same nine trading cards.  Identical.  Just a fun freebie to get them excited about the movie.  However, within minutes we had packs of kids running around the church trading like crazy!  One kid is trying to get as many Rock Monsters as he can get, another is trying to max out the Larrys … it was rediculous!  And then one little girl decided to give hers away, so now there were kids with ten or twelve cards … which made them rock stars or something!  And the whole time I’m just saying over and over and over … they’re the same.  You all have the same stuff … why are you trading and acting like you’re getting something better?!?

Granted, back when I was a kid and I collected baseball cards … I had stacks of the same card and thought I was brilliant for it … but that’s completely different.

Youth Pastor Biggest Loser contest!

24 Jan
January 24, 2008

 Youth Specialties, one of the best youth ministry resource companies out there, as well as a great source for youth ministry training and encouragement, is having a weight loss competition!  And I get to be a part of it!  We’re still sorting out some of the details, but it should be a lot of fun and have some great prizes for the competitors!

Basically, Marko (president of Youth Specialties) needs to lose some weight – you can read his blog here.  But doing it with others always sets you up for more success so he’s looking for youth workers to do it with!

Finger Rocket Fun

19 Jan
January 19, 2008

Brought a few dozen of these bad boys to youth group on Thursday night.  Nothing like playing a dodgeball type game with foam finger rockets!  They were flying all over the place!  Definitely a lot of fun.  I managed to take out more than my share of rocket warriors … but in the end, I never actually survived long enough to finish a round.  Either they recognized the threat that I represented and all targeted me, resulting in an overwhelming show of force that not even Captain America could resist … or I have slow reflexes and made for an easy target.

I prefer the first explanation.

Gauntlet + Middle School = Fun!

17 Jan
January 17, 2008

Memory lane.  Oldschool Gauntlet.  Absolutely awesome decades later!  I pumped so many quarters in the arcades back in the day on this game they shoud have sent me a complimentary copy, but I’m not bitter.  Actually, I’m such a nerd that not only have I bought this multiple times over the years (for my Commodore 64, NES), I actually own two copies of it now.  One for my Nintendo (Gamecube’s Midway Arcade), and now the XBox live version on the XBox 360 (I wanted to be able to play it online with others!).

Anyway, I got such a kick out of yesterday afternoon at the middleschool afterschool program at the YMCA.  On Wednesdays I bust out the Gamecube for an hour of gaming at the end of the afternoon.  Usually that means an hour of Mariokart or an hour of Smash Bros., with an occasion Mario Strikers diversion.  Well, just to throw them off I threw this game in – I thought the angry mob would be funny.  Instead, they were all mystified.  They had never seen the game!  So for the next hour they took turns working their way through the levels – we turned it off after they finished level 27.  They loved it!  What amazes me is that in spite of all the technological advances we’ve made, some of the greatest games are these simple things from decades ago where the emphasis was on gameplay and not graphics.

All that to say, Gauntlet is, and always will be, amazing.  End of story.

Image of God

15 Jan
January 15, 2008

I spoke on the sanctity of life this last Sunday in church.  My sermon took a different direction than it has on this subject in past years; rather than using scripture to prove the personhood of unborn babies, I focused on the fact that all have been created in the image of God, and as such, there is no such thing as too much cost or too much effort to protect those who bear the image of God.  Every human life has immeasurable value.

Genesis 1:26-27 (NKJV) reads, “Then God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’  So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”  Do you see how it is repeated there at the end?  It’s to drive home the point: men and women are created in the image of God.  No other creation can claim that, and as such, as image bearers’ of God, we are worth more than anyone can ever begin to fathom!  When I see stories from peoples’ lives, people who have above and beyond to protect a life, I think I am seeing someone who begins to grasp what this all means, who begins to see the value in a person simply because they exist and bear the image of God, regardless of their age, health, or convenience.  I used the following video as an illustration of one such couple; it honestly blows me away every time I see it, and I was caught off guard to be standing behind the pulpit crying.

*** EDIT:  I have added the audio to this message on my audio page, or you can download it here (just right click it and select “save target as” to save it to your computer)

"Meanest Mom on Planet"

10 Jan
January 10, 2008

Maybe you’ve read about this already; maybe not.  It’s the story about the “meanest mom on planet” who sold her son’s car after finding alcohol in it.  I have a two sided opinion on this; on the one hand, I absolutely aplaud her taking a stand and removing the privilege of having a car on the issue of alcohol.  Totally the right decision.  On the other hand, that punishment is enough – going on to humiliate the kid by putting the following in the paper is just degrading and over the top.  Lots of people seem to find it hilarious and wonderful, but as a youth worker, I am trubled that she is dragging her kid through the mud and seeming to enjoy doing so.  The article even says that she is planning on running the add another week, even though the car is already sold, to get more feedback.  Seriously?  She’s going to run the add, further humilate her son, for compliments?  Selling the car was a great response; making fun of her son to the nation … way overboard to the “crime.”  Here’s the add she listed …

“OLDS 1999 Intrigue. Totally uncool parents who obviously don’t love teenage son, selling his car. Only driven for three weeks before snoopy mom who needs to get a life found booze under front seat. $3,700/offer. Call meanest mom on the planet.”

My article at SYM!

02 Jan
January 2, 2008
 Hey everyone … the following is an article I wrote for the Simply Youth Ministry website … click the link to get the whole thing!
my spiritual health and my physical healthmy spiritual health and my physical health
Two years ago I became too heavy for the doctor’s scale to even register my weight – apparently the scale designers don’t think people over 350 …