One Incredible Night video

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This is the music video I put together from the all nighter we had a couple weeks ago at my church, Brandywine Valley Baptist.  : )  It was a great night; we had an awesome turnout, a ton of activities and some superstar volunteers that made it all possible for the middle school kids that came out!  I think I was out of commission for a few days after, though – apparently I can’t go all night long without consequences any more!!!

Youthworker Book of Hope

youthworkerbookofhope

Wow!  This is the cover for the Youthworker Book of Hope, a book that I am one of the authors for, and I am LOVING it!  I just saw it for the first time – definitely made my day!  Maybe I’m biased, but the imagery captures the feel of the book perfectly – I can’t wait for this thing to come out next August!  Len Evans, Tim Baker, myself and a group of other youth workers all wrote chapters for this upcoming book from Youth Specialties.  Here’s the official description:

The Youth Worker Book of Hope offers you encouragement and hope in those moments of darkness by using experiences and advice from people who have been through the valley and learned from it. Youth workers from around the country have contributed personal stories of their own desire to quit, confrontations with parents, struggles with running the ministry, getting fired, and many more.

You know, we’re an interesting breed. We pour our whole life into ministry-giving physically, emotionally, spiritually, relationally, even financially. And, we do all of this to encourage students to live like Christ beyond youth group. Even when we struggle, fail, or find ourselves at the end of a long month feeling drained and discouraged we’re still called to show our students the love of Jesus.

The Youth Worker Book of Hope offers you encouragement and hope in those moments of darkness by using experiences and advice from people who have been through the valley and learned from it. Youth workers from around the country have contributed personal stories of their own desire to quit, confrontations with parents, struggles with running the ministry, getting fired, and many more. You’ll read about how other youth workers messed up and how they found hope at the end of a seemingly hopeless road.

In tough times it’s easy to get lost. The Youth Worker Book of Hope meets you while you’re still struggling and draws you in to the hope of God.

Biggest Loser Timing

I love the Biggest Loser.  Obviously, the show has given me a LOT.  Years added to my life, friends, incredible experiences, and a once in a lifetime experience.

That said, one of the things that always frustrates me is the unrealistic expectations that people get watching the show.  People see the weight loss and think they should be able to achieve those kinds of results in a week or they aren’t doing something right.  Here’s the reality: even Biggest Loser contestants can’t lose that much weight in a week.

Let me explain.  During season four, Dr. Jen actually mentioned in her blog on the NBC.com website that weeks on the ranch aren’t necessarily seven days – sometimes they are more.  And every once and a while it slips into the show as well.  For example, on tonight’s episode, the eleventh “week” on the ranch, Ally (the host) mentioned at the end that they had been on the ranch for 93 days.  93 days?  That’s thirteen and a half weeks.  Even rapid weight loss isn’t impressive enough for TV … the times have to be shortened to make it that much more amazing.

And here’s the kicker: the amount of weight these men and women have lost in thirteen and a half weeks is nothing short of AMAZING.  Yet, even that is embellished to make it more so.  That same trick in timing is what had me so shocked during my season; based on the results of the men during season two I thought I would need to be losing certain numbers of pounds per week to be competitive.  I was killing myself and falling short of what the men lost during season two.  Imagine my complete shock when I arrived on the ranch during week “six” to be weighed in and discover that not only was I not behind them all … I was ahead of every man on the ranch.  Here I had been beating myself up for being a failure based on what I had seen and in fact I was a frontrunner!

All this to say, reality TV is a sensationalized, highly edited, exaggerated UNreality.  Absolutely use Biggest Loser for inspiration.  Many, many people have been motivated to positive change by Biggest Loser and that is a beautiful thing.  But do NOT base your weight loss expectations on what you see on the screen; base it on your doctor’s advice, your weight loss groups’ goals, or your trainer’s guidance.  You are capable of incredible things, far more than you could ever realize.  Don’t sabotage that potential with impossible expectations.

The Skit Guys’ new DVD “Laugh”

While I was at Youth Specialties National Youth Worker Convention in Pittsburgh a few weeks ago I found out that Eddie James and Tommy Woodard, also known as The Skit Guys, had come out with a new DVD entitled Laugh.

It’s a collection of about a dozen skits, most of which this is their first time on DVD and a few that have been done before – but revised and refilmed for this collection.  Wow.  I seriously was busting out laughing through every one of them.  My favorites included “Running the Race” and “Poop Sign Language.”  Yup.  Poop.  Loved it!

Here’s what I also love about this collection; it’s only $20, putting it at half the price of a lot of other clip dvds out there, yet it has a LOT more content.  I also love that it was all in widescreen.  The nerd in me is tired of standard definition.  I love using these clips as intros to talks, discussion starters, in big church or the youth group, or even just something to get everyone laughing.  Without a doubt, it’s their best skit dvd yet!