Tuesday, August 23, 2016

News U Can Use: "Target Uses Kids to Make Thier Newest Commercial"

" Before kids step into their first day of school outfits, zip up thei r backpacks or sit down at their desks, the Target team is putting pencil to paper, thinking up the best ways to celebrate kids’ potential all year long. This time, to help youngsters and parents gear up for the coming school year, we're tapping kids to steer our entire back-to-school campaign.

“Kids and families are incredibly important to Target, and just as parents recognize the potential in their kids, Target does too,” said Jeff Jones, chief marketing officer, Target. “We were inspired to work even more closely with kids after seeing the difference they made in the development of our new Cat & Jack and Pillowfort lines.
Now, we're taking things a step further, allowing kids to put their mark on Target’s community giving and marketing campaign for the back-to-school season. Both are not only inspired by kids, but completely created by kids...."

: https://corporate.target.com/article/2016/07/back-to-school-campaign

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Top 10: JH/MS Girls Who Are In Your Group?

 10. Home-School Holly- Sheltered not allowed out of the house unless she is going to church.  Has memorize huge amounts of scripture, but has no idea what it means...

9. Boy-Crazy Brianna- She shows up just for the guys. Is a constant flirt and has a new "boyfriend" every week.  Will be on Facebook or Twitter tomorrow upset because her latest guy dumped her

8. Shy Savanna- Sweet and will do anything for anybody, but good luck trying to get her to talk to anyone.

7. Jock Jenna- She is a fun, great leader...when she is there. Which is only a few weeks in-between sports or summer traveling teams

6. Preppie Princess Paige- Mommy and daddy have money...or at least they think they do.  Always has the latest fashions on.  Tries her hardest to act just like a Kardashian.

5. Outgoing Olivia- Try to get her to stop talking.  She will tell you about anything and everything.  She is the life of the party and some times too much? 

4. Emo Emily-  Dress all in black and hurting.  Headphones on and hood up.  Quiet and distance, but listening hard to everything you have to say, to see if you are just "another adult" or someone that really DOES cares.

3. Rebel Rebecca- Hangs with Emily sometimes. Grew up in the church and is bored to death with it all.  She is only there because mom and dad make her...and she is going to make sure you are going to pay for it.  If she has to be there you are going to know it!

2. Serving Sarah- Never really up front, and never really outspoken.  Turn your back and next thing you know chairs are stacked, pens are put away, and the staff bathroom is sparkling clean (*alright maybe not the bathroom thing, but you get the idea)

1. Missionary Megan!!- has her Bible and it is ready.  Even though you are not suppose to 'play favorite', she is yours.  Always ready to serve, share, witness, and the first one to sign up for the summer missions trip. You might just find her going door to door around your church asking people to come to youth group.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Free Media #91: "Pokemon Go: PS Template"

Edit EVERYTHING and create your own handout, signs, lesson or crazy spin-off game for your group this week!

CLICK HERE (to get your Pokémon ON!)

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

14 Boredom Buster Games For Your Group!

Here are 14 fun group games that don't take a whole lot of effort or prep to play.  Some of the usual, classic youth group boredom busters and a few new ones from the wacky people over at Buzz Feed.

1. I'm a Doctor
2. The Winking Assassin\
3. Salad Bowl
4. Human Jukebox
5. Fortunately / Unfortunately
6. The Movie Game
7. Scrambled Numbers
8. Sorry I m Late
9. The Game of Many Names
10. Can You Pizza?
11. Word Association
12. 2 Truths and 1 Lie
13. I Can Keep a Beat
14. Same Difference

CLICK HERE (to play on players)

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

"And Two Become One Flesh" (A Spouse's Call to Ministry)

A few months back I was sitting with a fellow youth ministry veteran.  We were meeting for the first time.  I had heard of him and had read his books, so I was intrigued to hear his story.  He was similar age to myself and similar in years of experience.

We did the usual swapping of battle stories and sharing of the ministry journeys from state to state and church to church.  We seemed to mirror each other in so many ways.  I loved to hear his long term passion and goal to keep on doing youth ministry.

Then came the inevitable family and marriage questions.  The usual "how long have you been married?" and "how many kids do you have?"  About this point in my conversations I usually nervously share how much my wife is involved and her calling to youth ministry as my "co-worker" and "partner".  This is usually followed by an awkward silence or a weird look, as the person across the table explains to me why their spouse is not involved and that it is not her/his calling.  This time around however, it was different.  The first time in a long time, he began to explain his wife calling and role in his ministry over the years. 

Like a breath of fresh air after sitting in a stale stuffy room for a long time, I just sat and listened.

The night before, my wife and I had been talking about her role and how different it was from the role of many of the wives she had been recently connecting with through her ministry working with an organization to encourage pastor's wives.

As we talked a verse had struck me "...and two become one flesh..." (Mark 8:10).   It was what we had talked about relationally and sexually in our pre-marriage counseling.   It is paralleled to the original passage Genesis 2:24, connected to the idea of God creating a "help-meet" for Adam to do the work in the garden.  The thing is..

I don't think I have ever heard it talked about in connection to a husband's calling to ministry.

As pastors, especially youth pastor's if our wives/spouses is our "one flesh", why is it that so many of us are not serving together?   Why are we not allow our wives/spouses to serve with us, as our "help-meet"?

Is it because the modern church has moved to a more business, job, vocational,.... view of our role.   "People don't take their wives with them to work" I  have heard people say to me.   In recent years, I have heard the "it is not a 2 for 1" as an excuse for why a wife is not involved.  All of which I understand.  My wife and I often share with many who are younger in ministry, there are "seasons" of marriage, when you children make it more difficult.  We are not discounting that or even being unrealistic.

We have also however counseled each young, single or soon to be married youth pastor, that "a spouse will make you or break you in ministry".  If a spouse is not called to it, it is going to be difficult.

After sitting with another 20+ lifer in youth ministry hearing his heart and also of his wife's heart for long-term youth ministry, I am just wondering if I am missing something from the Biblical equation...

1 flesh + 1 flesh = 2 + marriage = 1 flesh? What about when it comes to those of us in ministry?  

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Top 10: Youth Ministry Lesson from the Olympics

10. Success comes after dedicated practice, there is no such thing as overnight success.

9.  Pride comes before a fall

8.  Focus and the ability to manage stress allows you to hit your target. 

7. Powerful backstories of endurance and perseverance in the past need to be shared in order to appreciate the present.

6.  Natural ability and God-given talent outweighs the need for fame.

5.  Learning how to balance, make the leap and land on your feet takes confidence.

4. Even when you lose you win because you learn something for the next time.

3. You need a team behind you and beside you cheering you on, even in the individual things you do.

2. Supportive, strong parents that are willing to sacrifice are key to their children's success. 

1.  You are never too old to compete and succeed AGAIN! 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Free Media #90: Olympic Game Icon Collection (graphics)

Doing an Olympic lesson series?  Creating an quick Olympics quiz? Or creating your own set of crazy, wacky, messy Olympics for your back to school night?  Here is a quick FREE collection of Olympic games icons for your use!

CLICK HERE (to get them)