It's called Life Series. These powerful, short and amazingly well done videos are specifically designed to help new believers to grow in their new LIFE in Christ.
You've heard the old proverb, "The proof is in the pudding." Well, I have a new one for you, "The proof is in the schedule."
Last Wednesday night I had the immense privilege of attending a goodbye celebration for Bill Freund (affectionally known as "Mr. Bill"). After 7 years as the youth leader at Grace Chapel in Castle Rock, Colorado he stepped down to pursue the next chapter God has for him in youth ministry.
The last few years have been filled with news of famous ministry leaders who are falling morally, abusing finances and leading by intimidation . I can't think of a time, other than the Swaggert/Bakker scandals of the 1980's, where more ministry leaders have fallen in some swirl of ethical disgrace.
But, for every leader that falls morally, there are ten who burn out emotionally and spiritually. I've seen far more ministry leaders leave the ministry out of discouragement than disgrace.
So how do we keep from being another ministry statistic? How do we finish well?
Although my race is not yet completed, God has blessed me to have been in ministry for 30 years. This week marked the 30 year anniversary of a church I co-planted and co-pastored for ten years before launching into Dare 2 Share full-time. Over the last three decades of starting a local church as well as a global ministry, God has given me a few insights into some of the keys to longevity in ministry.
Here are four of them:
"For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come." 1 Timothy 4:8
As a traveling evangelist I'm on the road...a lot. With all the headlines of Christian influencers, Hollywood actors and political leaders falling morally I'm reminded again and again of the importance of relentlessly guarding my sexual purity.
Okay, normally I don't blog about people but I'm gonna make an exception today.
Mark Matlock has been the key leader and the face of Planet Wisdom for many years as well as Youth Specialties for the last few years. And now that he is transitioning out of both I think it's time to recognize what an impact he has made on thousands of youth leaders and tens of thousands of teenagers alike.
It's the secret youth leader battle that's not so secret. All of us know down deep inside that the pot of hormones simmering underneath can turn into a boil in a micro-second. Given the right conditions any of us could fall, not just into lust, but into moral sin with
A lightbulb can brighten up a dark room. A laser can cut through steel. Lightbulbs disperse soft light in every direction for a short distance. Lasers can only be focused in a single direction but, theoretically, one beam can travel infinitely.
In the same way your ministry is either a laser
"And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man." Luke 2:52
As a young man growing up Jesus became intellectually sharper, physically fitter, spiritually deeper and relationally stronger. In other words he was fit in every major category of life.
If Jesus grew stronger in these four