Wednesday, April 30, 2008
What does a team player look like?
- Punctual – Team players know that timing affects the whole team and has an impact on the effort
- Respectful – Team players know that others on the team are counting on the team player to be in their place and doing their part so the rest of the team isn’t waiting.
- Attitude – “It’s not about me.” The team player realizes that there is a bigger picture and that life is not about them.
- Encourager – Team players encourage others on the team and build them up.
- Humble – Team players put other’s needs ahead of their own needs.
- Sacrifices – Team players will do whatever is necessary to see the team succeed.
- Excel – Team players go beyond their “job” or “position” and do what needs to be done, even when it doesn’t fit their schedule or “opinion” of what they are supposed to be doing.
- Recruit – Team players look for others who will fit on the team.
- Banks – Team players bank on their strengths and look to improve their weaknesses.
- Communicates – Team players realize the importance of communication to their task.
- Values – Team players value the team’s expectations and values of the organization.
This is the description of a team player that flowed out of my thoughts. How does this apply to your job? Your ministry? Your family?
Any additions that you can think of to add to this description?
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Monday, April 28, 2008
DEVELOPING HABITS THAT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE
Accountability=Caring, Deep Friendships
There are "friends" who destroy each other, but a real friend sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24
Deeper friendships = BETTER LIFE
Two people can accomplish more than twice as much as one;
they get a better return for their labor. Ecclesiastes 4:9
ACCOUNTABILITY ADDS UP…
Accountability adds INSIGHT to your decisions Result: direction
Fools think they need no advice, but the wise listen to others. Proverbs 12:15
Accountability adds TRUTH to your perception Result: perspective
Wounds from a friend are better than many kisses from an enemy. Proverbs 27:6
Accountability adds HOPE when you’re hurting Result: healing
Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.
The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results.
Accountability adds FAITH to your journey Result: spiritual growth
As iron sharpens iron, a friend sharpens a friend. Proverbs 27:17
Deeper friends=Better Life=Greater impact=People meet Jesus=Lives are changed
MOVING FROM FRIENDSHIP TO ACCOUNTABILITY
One last thought: Developing this habit will change your FRIENDSHIPS & your LIFE.
Mom and Dad, are you in an accountability relationship? Why or Why not?
If yes, share with your teen the benefits of being in an accountability relationship. If no, share why you haven't been but are going to establish one now.
Ask: How do you think an accountability relationship could help you grow in your faith?
Ask: Who do you think you will be entering an accountability relationship with?
Spend a few minutes in prayer with your teen for them as they enter into an accountability relationship or as they search out a friend to hold them accountable.
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Just got home from CREST at NHC. I love CREST because that is where the pulse of the body is found. This is one of my favorite gatherings we do. It's great to hear the different ministry teams share what is happening with their team. Probably my favorite is the strategy time where we hear what is coming in the future of the church.
Saturday, April 26, 2008
Last Sunday I got to bring the message at church. Getting to speak is one of my favorite things to do. As a matter of fact I thought to myself, while I sat in the dental chair on Thursday for two hours, that is probably the least my jaws had moved in a long time (while awake).
Don’t fall asleep on your watch.
I Peter 5:8
Don’t Lose Control
Define to our family where we stand
Don’t try to stand on your own
We start off the day with prayer and Bible reading – 11%
Way to go! What better way to leave the house heading for a day at school than knowing you have been prayed for? Start the day off with God and the day seems to go much smoother.
We are busy to fit it into our schedule – 7%
If a Christian family is too busy than something has to go in the schedule. This small investment of daily time will have huge returns in the long run. Everyone go to be 15 minutes earlier and wake up 15 minutes earlier. In our culture we have so over-packed our schedules and families have become so busy. Little Susie has to be in dance, volleyball and girl scouts all at the same time. Children are so over involved in extra curricular activities and the result is more stress in the home and on the child. Let the child narrow down their choice to one activity outside of school and church and stick with it, this teaches them the art of prioritizing. When I look at my calendar it clearly tells me where, what, and who, my priorities are.
I don’t think my kids would want to – 6%
Does a parent let their child stay home from school if the child doesn’t want to go? Since when are the children supposed to call the shots? You may be surprised that they do want to. “I don’t think”, have you asked them? Maybe they would love to have their mom and dad sit down and pray with them before heading off to school. Perhaps they would like a family devotion time together. I double dog dare you to take the 6-week challenge. Spend 6 weeks of prayer with your child in the morning and then a family devotion time in the evening a few nights a week. At first they may not be enthused but they will get the hang of it, just make sure you find a devotional that is age appropriate and interesting and involves them.
Not sure where to start – 29%
This is encouraging to me. There is no sense of having given up but just not sure what to do. I think this is more than likely the boat that most parents are in. They want to but are not sure what to do. My theory is that some parents don’t know where to start because no one did this for them when they were children. More is caught than taught. If you find you don’t know where to start here are a few tips:
>Set a time with your family
>Start with prayer
>Read a chapter from Proverbs or get a devotional book or a Bible that is easy to read.
>Let the kids share their prayer request and you share yours.
>Have a time of prayer
>Most importantly let the kids be involved by letting them read or take the lead or write down the prayer requests in a family prayer journal.
>Just do it! Start today.
>Heart Connex family devotional
We follow supper with prayer and a devo – 26%
Family supper is important and in many families it is disappearing. Way to go! Keep it up. Perhaps you have some tips you could share in the comments to help the parents that aren’t sure where to start.
Other – 21%
There were several different devotion options shared. Some aren’t daily but do so a few times a week, which is great.
Friday, April 25, 2008
I broke out in song in my heart this afternoon, "A whole new world...."
In Part 2 we took a look at doing youth ministry events on purpose.
If we just “wing it” and plan on a whim we end up doing youth ministry without considering how the activity will impact student’s lives and their parent’s wallets. How much planning will really go into pulling off the event successfully if we fail to plan properly we could actually do more damage than good. I'm sure I'm not the only one that had an event or activity that was a total flop.
Some ideas when planning an events calendar:
>Decide what purposes you want to accomplish in your events for the year.
>Gather your church’s calendar dates for events that are already on the calendar to avoid conflicting dates.
>Gather your school’s calendars, if possible, to avoid conflicting dates.
>Decide what annual event’s you will participate in (camps, mission trips, youth conferences)
>Try, when possible, to spread out events and activities that have a higher registration fees, try to not hit the pocket book all at once.
Sitting down and spending some time in planning and thinking about the year’s events can really take a stress or burden off of you as a youth leader. I know what direction you are heading as a youth ministry. I know what I need to be thinking about and planning for upcoming events, it helps to know in February what my October event is and the planning steps that need to happen between now and then. It makes life easier in recruiting volunteers to help with an event.
How do you accomplish all of this if you are a volunteer youth leader or a group of volunteers? We will tackle that in Part 4.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Sometimes we think we know what is supposed to happen.
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
In part one we looked briefly at event/activity driven youth ministry.
Our approach at NHC youth is a bit different. Since we are a purpose driven youth ministry we focus on 5 areas of balance in our purpose (fellowship, discipleship, mission, ministry, worship). To do an activity without a purpose is simply filling time with an event and activity with no real idea or hope of what to accomplish in the lives of the students.
Example: We had a Laser Tag all night event. Was the purpose to play as many games of laser tag as possible? No. Two purposes were accomplished in this event. First was fellowship – students built relationships with each other as they competed in teams throughout the night. Second purpose was mission – we had a devotion time that was focused on reaching their friends with the love of Jesus Christ, using laser tag as an illustration. A third benefit is students got to build relationships with their adult leaders as they traveled to and from the event and spent an entire night playing games together, investing in student’s lives is primo.
Keeping this in mind here are some things I consider as I look at planning out our events and activities:
>What is the purpose?
>What do we hope to accomplish?
>How will the event add to our weekly youth ministry?
>How will this event impact the overall vision of the ministry?
What other considerations are there in planning? We will answer these questions in “What’s Your Plan?” Part 3
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Monday, April 21, 2008
I get invitations often for our youth group to join another youth group or groups for a combined youth event. I’m sure some of the events or activities are good, I’m also sure that some are not. The reason why I say I’m sure that some are not good events is because they are thrown together at the last minute, promoted at the last minute, and there appears on the surface to be a lack of organization. With those red flags waving in my face it is hard for me to agree to take our students to a poorly planned event.
Now here on the Outer Banks there is a “last minute” mentality. Let’s wait till the last minute to plan, last minute to register, last minute to show up or even be at least a half hour late. I guess this is the nature of our beach culture.
I posted last week about doing youth ministry skillfully. Is it skillful youth ministry to plan events and activities last minute or even “on a whim”?
A few problems with this approach to youth ministry:
>Lack of organization
>Reflects a lack of professionalism
>Not enough time to promote and publicize
>Not considerate of people’s lives and already full calendars
>Usually the event ends up being lame or not affective
>Event’s purpose isn’t clear or lacks purpose
>Won’t have as much participation as a well thought-out and planned event.
Some approach youth ministry as event driven or activity driven, “If we do more events and activities we will reach more students.” I believe this is shallow youth ministry. Students don’t need an activity director, as a matter of fact most students are busy enough already and they don’t need just another activity to fill their calendar. You reach more with quality than quantity.
NHC Youth’s calendar of events is planned out, at this point, through February of 2009. More on how we plan events in “What’s Your Plan?” Part 2
Sunday, April 20, 2008
Our worship gatherings were fantastic this morning. There was quite a bit of energy going into singing this morning. I enjoy hearing people worship God with all they’ve got. I’m sure God enjoys it a whole lot more.
It was great to have my little nephew Nate back at church today. I miss him and Tricia and Gwyneth and can’t wait till they are home in a couple of months. That is going to be mucho good. The best.
Interesting that the message this morning was geared to men standing on the front line I noticed a few falling asleep in church. Point 1 – Don’t fall asleep on watch! If only you could see what we see from the front. At times it can be interesting and for an ADD boy it can be difficult not to point it out. (More on the message tomorrow)
This afternoon we had around 130 parents in the auditorium for the Understanding Your Teenage seminar. Duffy Robbins brought us a lot of good info and tips to use as we raise our teens. He had a great delivery and kept us all laughing. Super helpful stuff! I really like Duffy’s points about parents involving their teens in youth group. For the parents, of the OBX region, that chose not to attend, you missed out BIG time. The best $10 investment a parent of a teen could make in their child’s life.
The beach mentality showed itself today at the seminar. After advertising a cut off date for registration and then extending the registration to the 15th we still had parents walk in today that weren’t registered. Lucky for them we ordered extra books. Plus we had 15 registered that were “no shows” which freed up some books. A Big thanks to my buds and buddettes in the Outer Banks Youth Ministry Network for helping put together a great seminar opportunity for parents of teens. The snacks were fantastic during the break!
Today was a long day but a great day!
Saturday, April 19, 2008
Friday, April 18, 2008
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
At The Call in February there were a few items brought up at our youth leader round table discussion that we never got around to. I said I would blog about them. Now I’m finally getting around to it. (Only 2 months later)
The question came up, “How do we grow in numbers?” (Great question and one that can’t be totally answered in this blog) There are too many variables to consider to be able to say “here is how you grow in numbers.” If you live in a small town 15 may be a huge youth group. If you live in a major city 500 may be small. People have written books on the subject.
When I’m asked how many students we have in our youth ministry (it’s a bit irritating) I respond with “not enough”. There is always one more student that needs to know Jesus Christ.
Here are a few of my thoughts:
>numbers doesn’t necessarily equal “health”
>a healthy ministry will grow
>numbers aren’t an accurate way to judge success
>make sure the youth gathering is fun and not lame
>make sure your teaching is relevant to where they are today
>don’t sugar coat things, give them the truth
>staff your volunteers ahead of the growth
>ask your self “Why?” often. Why are we doing this event?
>don’t fill a calendar just to have activities. Students need more than an activity director.
>love the students and build a relationship with them.
>show an interest in their lives
>show students how important it is for them to reach their peers
>don't play the comparison game, you'll lose every time
>clowns are scary and should never be used at a youth gathering
Next week: Growth Spiritually
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
David Archuletta – Nailed it. His voice is naturally pure. I agree with Randy whatever he sings is going to be good because he can sing anything.
Carly – It was OK but not great. Sort of screamy.
Syesha – Great voice. She did a good job with that song. Best female vocal of the night.
Brooke – Nice personal touch on the song, but it was just OK.
Kristy – it was alright. Seemed a bit beauty pageant like to me.
David Cook – Great job rockin it. Never heard the song before so I couldn’t compare to how Mariah did it. David’s version was kickin. Good thing he took a risk.
Jason –Could the dude sound any cooler. Of course if there are congas in the song how could he go wrong? Very relaxing sound.
My order from worst to best tonight:
6. Kristy – could be going home
5. Carly – If Kristy isn’t going home then Carly is going
2. David A.
1. David C.
They had to do songs of Mariah Carey. Tough for the girls to pull of since they would be compared to Mariah, the guys had a better chance. Not easy to do the songs of a super star like that but in my opinion (and I used to play drums with Mariah) I would say they did a good job.
"You played drums with Mariah?"
Yes, I would pop the tape in the Walkman and play right along with Mariah. ;)
Monday, April 14, 2008
Sunday, April 13, 2008
Saturday, April 12, 2008
Friday, April 11, 2008
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Exhibit A: The Empty Tomb
Why Resurrection Matters
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
1.Sing joyfully to the Lord, you righteous; it is fitting for the upright to praise him.
2. Praise the LORD with the harp; make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre.
3. Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy.
4. For the word of the LORD is right and true; he is faithful in all he does.
I think verse 3 gives us a principle that applies to youth ministry, “play skillfully”. What does that mean to us in youth ministry?
I think there is a common pitfall for us to fall into as youth leaders. It is so easy to get in a groove or a rut (however you want to look at it). We get a pattern down or things are working, maybe it isn’t excellent but it at least gets us by.
Students are sharp enough to catch on when we aren’t approaching what we do with skill. We have probably all sat in a Sunday school class or Bible study where the leader or teacher shows up and opens up their quarterly or leader guide and basically reads it word for word. It soon becomes obvious that the leader isn’t prepared. In my mind - If a leader won’t invest their time to prepare then is the message or event important enough to listen to or participate in?
We need to make sure that in what we don in ministry we are striving to do it skillfully.
Some steps to become more skillful:
1. Spend time in preparation don’t just wing it.
2. Look at your calendar – Your calendar says what is most important in what you do in ministry.
3. Observe others – It is very important that we inspect other youth ministries that are successful and doing well, don’t compare but evaluate what is being doing to be successful and see how it will work in the context of your ministry.
4. Learn - Learn from God by spending time with him. Learn from reading some good practical books on youth ministry and leadership. Learn from other youth ministries.
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
Monday, April 7, 2008
This summer I'm planning on inviting some of our older high school guys to participate in a Bible study with me. A 6 week study on Respect, Responsibility and Righteousness. They will be required to do a daily quiet time during the 6 week period and to fast from something they really like. I'll see if they got the stuffs to take on the boot camp.
Sunday, April 6, 2008
(of a person) not identified by name; of unknown name : the anonymous author of Beowulf | the donor's wish to remain anonymous | an anonymous phone call.
• having no outstanding, individual, or unusual features; unremarkable or impersonal : the anonymous black car waiting to take him to the airport | a faceless, anonymous group.
• [ postpositive ] used in names of support groups for addicts of a substance or behavior to indicate the confidentiality maintained among members of the group : Alcoholics Anonymous | Debtors Anonymous.
I especially like the second definition. “Having no outstanding, individual, or unusual features; unremarkable or impersonal.”
I don’t know about you but I don’t want to live my life anonymously. Maybe that’s why my hair stands straight up on top.
I don’t want to be anonymous I want to be known. God created us to be known not live life alone.
I don’t want to be anonymous in how I live my life. I want others to see that I am living a life for Christ.
I don’t want to be an anonymous author of anything. Ever wonder when you read a poem or song lyrics just who “anonymous” might be?
I don’t want to be anonymous in my opinions. What good is an opinion if it is shared anonymously?
I don’t want to be anonymous in views or convictions. People don’t take anonymous views or convictions seriously.
I wonder what would have happened if our founding father’s had signed The Declaration of Independence with a bunch of “anonymous” signatures. Of course how would a person have an “anonymous” signature? The founding fathers signed their names to a document that they knew would label them as traitors with the motherland, but they signed it because they believed in the statement they were making. They were willing to own up in what they believed in.
So, I challenge you to not live life or do anything anonymously and if you really have guts, spike your hair.
Saturday, April 5, 2008
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
My new web site which now hosts my blog posts is up and fully functional. You can check it out at andylawrenson.com . There is also a mon...