Small groups are a great way for your student to grow and own their faith. Students get to discuss the Bible and then students get to go beyond the group time and do something special. This weekend we had 2 special meetings.
Both of our guys groups had the opportunity to do a work project at the church. You probably saw a pile of concrete that was sitting by the driveway of the church, well, now that pile is gone. We had a good group of students come and work. They even got to enjoy some Sonic afterwards!
This was a great opportunity for them to hang out together and do something positive.
Our second opportunity was when our high school groups went to go play some laser tag together at Track 21. This provided our students with an opportunity to spend time with friends and then shoot them in the back with lasers! A great time was had by everyone. Here’s a pic of the group that went.
If your student isn’t engaging in small groups, check them out this weekend. We meet every Sunday from 6:30-8:00 PM.
Low expectations can be a killer for teens.
Tell a teenager that they aren’t capable of doing something and they won’t even try. Likewise if you empower a teenager to do something big they can exceed even the loftiest of expectations.
I believe that teens are capable of doing more. They are able to make a real impact. They can change the community in which they live. They can transform the schools that they attend. They can do more.
So as adults we need to let them. We need to show them a goal that is crazy huge and then let them run after it. Let them surprise us. All we have to do is show them how much more they can do.
This is what our Disciple Now weekend is all about. Empowering students to Do Something. Something big. Something that can change lives. Something new. Disciple Now is April 11-13 and it’s going to be pretty awesome. Here is the registration form. Encourage your kid to be here, make them if you must, they will thank you later!
When I entered into youth ministry social media wasn’t a big deal. Then myspace came in and changed everything. Facebook took over the mantle as the best platform, and twitter has a unique viral sort of following. With the rise of the smartphone and the increasing quality of the cameras attached to them, it was only a matter of time until Instagram (a photo sharing app) entered the scene. Instagram is insanely popular with teenagers. If your kid isn’t on Instagram, most of their friends still are, so it matters. As with all social media there are some dangerous ways that it can be used if privacy isn’t kept tight.
Jonathan McKee is a youth culture expert and he has recently posted an article about Keeping Instagram Safe. In this article he writes:
Instagram can be a fun and innocent app, but like all social media, it requires responsibility by the user. As Instagram’s own faq page states:
“All photos are public by default which means they are visible to anyone using Instagram or on the instagram.com website. If you choose to make your account private, then only people who follow you on Instagram will be able to see your photos.”
This might not sound like a big deal, and most of the time, it’s not. But I’ve witnessed the horror stories when parents didn’t talk with their kids about social media responsibility.
McKee goes on to list some suggestions for how to use Instagram safely. I encourage you to check out the rest of his blog post here. Then have a conversation with your kid about how they use Instagram.
I love small groups for youth. It gives students an opportunity to have fun, talk about their faith, and even learn a little. Small groups are the best way that I know of to give students a chance to formulate what they believe and then express it in words. Sometimes it’s messy. Sometimes the lesson isn’t really taught. Sometimes it’s crazy. But it matters, and it can change students forever. If you have a kid who is missing out on youth small groups get them involved. We meet at various houses from 6:30-8 pm each Sunday night.
To illustrate the way small groups can go a little haywire, here’s a little story. I have the opportunity to sit in with the middle school boys and for the last two weeks we have barely covered the lesson. Last week we found ourselves discussing how to look for a wife. This week, when we “should” have been discussing the importance of Scripture memory, we found ourselves caught up in obedience to parents. Then one of the boys who asked to be called Kwon Phillipe said this gem:
Small groups are different, and they are awesome.