This Election And Its Impact On Students

Used with permission: http://www.freeimages.com/photo/american-flag-1150851

Used with permission: http://www.freeimages.com/photo/american-flag-1150851

I feel like I’m late to the game when it comes to saying something–scratch that–ANYTHING about the upcoming election. This has been intentional on my part, not because I’m worried about anyone disagreeing with me, but because I didn’t know how to approach the subject.

Honestly, and I know I’m not alone here, I’m not a fan of either candidate. I know supporters on both sides and I figured I’d write something from the perspective of what I am–a youth pastor. So, here are some thoughts as a youth pastor on what I’ve heard and observed from my students about this upcoming election.

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Everything and Nothing

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Used with permission: http://www.freeimages.com/photo/empty-office-1519291

In the gospels Jesus asked this simple, yet haunting question–“What good is it to gain the world, yet lose your soul?” In other words, what if you have it all, but you’re missing what matters most?

Is it possible to be incredibly full and yet painfully empty? Can someone have it all together, and yet, be utterly and irrevocably depleted? Jesus was entreating us to think about our lives and what we’re striving for. He was inviting us to consider what constitutes a meaningful life.

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Laughing At Our Sin

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I’ve been thinking lately–which I know might be a dangerous thing–about the issues we all have. This all happened after I counseled some of our students who told me they were ‘struggling’ with sin.

We talked about Scripture and Jesus and still felt like we were back at square one. I thought about what sin means if you’re in Christ. Being in Christ means you have been set free. And freedom is something to take joy in.

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Crafting Messages For Students

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One of the many joys I’ve had in working with young people over the years, is crafting messages for our weekly gatherings. The thrill of the blank page and capturing God’s message has, and continues to be, life giving for me.

Over the years, I’ve experimented with different teaching styles, but the focus has remained the same: Reading and exegeting the Scriptures, and formulating a message for a specific group of students.

I often dialogue with other youth leaders about the process of crafting messages and I’m always eager to learn how to improve in this area. Here are a few ideas I’m working through.

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