People often ask me how often I travel. My standard answer is "a lot."
This weekend the Rachel Scott story is unpacked in the emotionally riveting and spiritually challenging I'm Not Ashamed movie.
I believe in the power of a great mission trip to inspire teenagers to serve the poor, reach the lost and do some good. Over the years I have seen the impact mission trips have on teenagers, including my 15 year old son, both emotionally and spiritually. Just getting an affluenct (compared-to-most-of-the-world) American teenager in the grit and grime of an underdeveloped country is often enough to change his/her perspective for a life time.
While I believe in the power of a mission trip to impact a teenager I am also convinced that youth ministry needs a better kind of mission trip for the investment. Every summer, millions of dollars are raised for mission trip type endeavors. And I fully believe that many (if not most) mission trips fail to make a maximum impact, both on the teenagers and they people they are serving.
Last week we finished our first One Day youth leader training in Denver. It was a spiritually powerful and immensely practical event that prepared youth leaders from across Colorado to build a youth ministry that makes a difference for eternity. Here are 5 reasons you and your team should attend the One Day closest to you!
1. Riding the Rhino is a powerful (and fun) picture of the kingdom of God advancing through your youth ministry.
As Matthew 11:12 reminds us, "The kingdom of God is forcefully advancing and forceful men lay hold of it"...and hold on for the ride of their lives!
These One Day events are held on Saturdays from 9:30-3:30 in cities across the nation and they are super fun. The idea of a charging rhino carries the day, and it will carry you and your team into strategic discussions you'd never imagine.
I live in the state of Colorado. Ten years ago we were known for being "Broncos" country (yes!), ski country (yes!) and hunting/hiking/fishing country (yes! yes! yes!)
Now we are known for all of that plus being one of the four "stoner states" where marijuana is legal for recreational use (Boo!)
As a lifelong Colorado resident, I'm not happy about that. In my opinion, we have exchanged some of our swagger as a tough state for one that prefers Doritos and doobies. And, as the Founder of a ministry that is committed to reaching teenagers with the hope of Jesus Christ, I'm very concerned about that.
On September 23, 2017 we will, by God's grace, be launching something unprecedented in our history as a ministry... Dare 2 Share Live! This national, live, multi-site catalytic outreach event will be prayerfully and strategically designed to spark a movement of spiritual conversations across the nation, primarily through teenagers.
Our prayer is to have this one-of-a-kind event in 50+ locations from coast to coast on Saturday, September 23rd, 2017. Dare 2 Share Live will be unique for several reasons.
"God is attracted to weakness. He can’t resist those who humbly and honestly admit how desperately they need him.” Jim Cymbala
It’s time we fast and pray for the next generation! I think it was my friend Daryl Nuss (with The National Network of Youth Ministries) who first introduced me to the concept of “Fasting Fridays” for the next generation. He and others were committed to giving something up so they could step up their prayers for a spiritual awakening among teenagers.
I just came from a Bible study full of leaders from around the Denver area. This gathering was not organized through a local church but through a Christian business leader. It was a great time of fellowship, learning and conversation.
I've been praying and thinking about how to best use SnapChat and Instagram as tools for teenagers to share their faith. I know there are some bad connotations for ShapChat (and Instagram for that matter) in many circles, but God has a way of redeeming technology to advance His mission and message.
So my question is how?