Since 2012 we have had the privilege of equipping thousands of teenagers to effectively share their faith during our full-week summer events called Lead THE Cause!
It's been a wild ride! The impact of a full week immersion into prayer, evangelism and disciple multiplication is hard to describe.
Out of all the things we do at Dare 2 Share I'm convinced that Lead THE Cause is the most effective when it comes to "The DNA Transfer" of the message and mission of Jesus into the hearts, souls and minds of these teenagers.
Doug Holliday of Sonlife, Zane Black of Lovin' Life and key members of our Dare 2 Share team gathered together this week in the mountains of Colorado to conspire for the first truly significant makeover of Lead THE Cause in several years.
These changes were based on input that we've received from youth leaders across the nation and things we've been sensing in our own souls over the last few years. So, without further adieu, here are the 5 exciting changes taking place at Lead THE Cause starting this Summer:
1. Introducing "Prayer-Care-Share-Dare!"
For the last several years our daily focus has been "Pray with Passion" (Monday/Tuesday), "Pursue with Love" (Wednesday), "Persuade with Truth" (Thursday) and "Plan to Multiply" (Friday.) But, to be honest, we got a little tired of explaining and qualifying what it meant to "pursue and persuade." To some it sounded like we were teaching teenagers to chase others down, tackle them and strong arm them into saying "yes" to Jesus. And that's not where our heart is.
So, we borrowed a chapter from Mission America Coalition and now use their strategy of Prayer-Care-Share. One day of Lead THE Cause will have a prayer focus (what is prayer? how do I pray? etc), the next a care focus (what are ways we can show love to others? how do we live this out with our friends? etc) and the next a share focus (sharing the gospel, multiplying disciples, etc.)
The last day will have a dare focus and will give teenagers three dares to carry out the next year. The first will center around a daily time with God. The second will be about recruiting a crew of other teenagers to help them live out the mission of Jesus. And the third will center on their personal plan to reach as many as possible through the Prayer-Care-Share strategy.
2. Every morning General session will have a matching afternoon activity!
This has been mostly true of past Lead THE Cause events but now we're taking it even further. In the past we have done this with the prayer and share days (prayer activities and Gospel advancing activities) but now we're also going to do this with the care day.
We will challenge teenagers to show their love for others through a variety of opportunities that range from praying for them to offering them bottled water to city specific service projects. Of course we will challenge teenagers to get into a Gospel conversation on this day as well (after all we are Dare 2 Share!) but the entry point into these conversations will be some way of showing care for another person in a very specific way.
The reason we have matched the activities to the theme of the morning General sessions is two fold: First of all we are called to be "doers of the Word and not hearers only" (James 1:22.) Secondly, when teenagers do what they learn it is far more likely to be understood, accepted and embraced as a habit. As the Chinese proverb goes, "I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand."
3. Every Summer it will have a unique theme that is driven home each night!
While the mornings and afternoons will continue to focus on training and activation, the night sessions will be filled with fun, worship, excitement and inspiration. This Summer our theme will be "Amplify" and will focus on the story of Phillip the Evangelist in Acts 8. Teenagers will learn to, like Phillip, amplify the Cause, amplify the King, amplify our love and amplify his message.
We believe that these themes will bring a fresh feel to every Lead THE Cause event and allow teenagers to come back year after year to reinforce their faith sharing skills during the day and be inspired with powerful truths from God's Word at night.
4. Friday will include an extensive youth group strategic planning time.
During the past Lead THE Cause events, Friday mornings have been pretty intense with two-hour long training sessions where speakers would guide the teenagers in developing a rather detailed plan for taking what they've learned back home.
This year there will be a brief overview of the strategy, and then youth groups will divide up and spend the majority of the morning session developing their own group plans. In addition, every teenager will leave with a personalized plan that they, with the help of their youth leaders and youth groups, have written and committed to during that time.
5. Lead THE Cause is now available coast to coast!
This summer we are adding a brand new city to Lead THE Cause...Los Angeles! We will be at the beautiful Vanguard University campus in Orange County. Just minutes away from the beach and Disneyland, this should be a great attraction for youth groups!
So now we have five cities that range from coast to coast for youth leaders to choose from: Washington DC, Chicago, Denver, Austin and LA! Every city has a unique prayer and outreach experience. Every city has a different spiritual "flavor". Every community is in desperate need of Jesus and needs youth groups, just like yours, to spend a week on mission, sharing the good news of Jesus to the people who live there.
Don't miss out on the new and improved Lead THE Cause! The past ones, by God's grace, were amazing. But, we are convinced that the new ones will be even better! We are so grateful for Colorado Christian University sponsoring Lead THE Cause across the nation!
To join us at Lead THE Cause this summer or to get more information, click here.