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STILL NEED Table of Contents Supply list A/V Script
Generation 3 Seminar Outline
****Trainer - you will need to arrange to have a video projector, not TV screens. The "Amistad" clip has subtitles that must be read by the audience and a TV screen is too small for this training event*** -Whenever you see this symbol, it means that this portion or statement is in the participant’s workbook. -Whenever you see this symbol, it means that there is a video clip for you to show.
Presentation Cues – Throughout the seminar notes you will be given Powerpoint cues that look like this: ADVANCE SLIDE **If you need to advance it more than once, a number will follow the cue in parenthesis (**). Before starting the presentation be sure that: • You have installed the fonts on the laptop that you are using. • The media links to the song “There Is A Light” is correct.
****NOTE TO TRAINER: THE PURPOSE STATEMENT IS FOR YOUR USE AS YOU PREPARE YOUR TRAINING EVENT AND NOT NECESSARY TO BE READ AT THE BEGINNING OF THE GEN. 3 TRAINING. ***** As a result of this event it is our goal and prayer that students will: …Reclaim their true identity within the story of God, …honestly encounter this truth in such a way that they respond to the transformational power of what it means to be the people of God, …and walk away with the passion and resources to re-tell the story to those around them, through the work that God has called the people of God to do.
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Friday Night Opening
Trainer Note: Before the Seminar Starts: A: ADVANCE SLIDE: Begin the presentation with the Rhythms Title Slide showing on the screen. B: Make sure your first video [Extreme Sports] is cued and ready to show.
Good Evening. Tonight we’re going to kick the evening off with a simple little game called “reverse charades”. What I will do is select three people from the audience to come up here on stage. Then I’ll divide the audience into three teams. Each of the people on stage will have their backs to the screen and be facing one of the audience teams. Various words and names will be flashed on the screen for the you: the audience, to act out while the students on stage try to guess what it is. Let the games begin. ADVANCE SLIDE
ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Wiggle, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Vomit, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Drowning, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Roller coaster, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Octopus, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Adam & Eve, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Noah & The Ark, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) David & Goliath, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Feeding of the 5000, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Lazarus, ADVANCE SLIDE(2) Pentecost ADVANCE SLIDE
(NOTE: After the final word is on the screen, the lights should go out and the following video is played with no introduction) Video Intro – EXTREME SPORTS
• “What we have just seen is pretty extreme. In order to perform at that level, these people have taken their sport to the edge. And when you live on the edge, you’re going to need guts, determination, courage, and a lot of practice. Remember what it was like to learn to ride a bike. And now, you have guys who have turned riding a bike into an art form. Most people have trouble just balancing themselves on a skateboard or rollerblades. Yet there are those who spend so much time on wheels that it becomes as natural as walking. It is fun to watch. And they make it look so simple. That’s the beauty of it. To come to a place where the most extreme effort is performed with such grace and ease that it appears to be easy. That’s the direction we’re headed this weekend. That’s the kind of mindset you’re going to need for the next two days as we dive into the issues that are going to revolutionize our churches. What we want to do this weekend is to take this relationship we have with God, this somewhat routine, everyday faith, this Christianity, and get extreme with it. We want to take this relationship that appears to be so simple - even to point that we often overlook it - and recapture it. ADVANCE SLIDE Check out this quote by a guy named H. Richard Niebuhr
“The greatest Christian revolutions come not by the discovery of something that was not known before. They happen when somebody takes radically something that was always there.” - H. Richard Niebuhr Page 2 of 53
I believe that there is a revolution happening in Christianity. It is rising up among a generation of young people who have begun to see that God is guiding them to the edge of their faith. To the uncharted territories. And they’re beginning to discover that the tools they use are the same as the former generations. But the way they use those tools are radically different. Just like the bicycle has been around for a long time, but it is only in the last 10 years that we’ve begun to see people do some amazing things with it. The challenge for you this weekend is to begin to take the timeless tools of the faith, the things that you’ve always known about and walk out to the edge with them to see what happens. Now some of you may not be ready to take your faith to the next level. Some of you may not be quite sure why you’re here. So let’s back up a bit and help you out. “Let’s talk about why you’re here.” ADVANCE SLIDE TOP TEN REASONS WHY YOU MIGHT BE HERE. **Start with funny ones on the first six and end with the real reasons on the last 4. Several suggestions have been given for the first 6. Feel free to change any or all of the first 6. 10) Two Words…Free Food! 9) Lost a bet. 8) It’s either this or watch my mom shave my dad’s back. 7) I’m finishing off that community service thing. 6) Hey, a weekend out of the house. Who wouldn’t come? 5) Youth Pastor said that if I didn’t come he’d tell my pastor about the whole peeing in the baptistry thing. * * * * * *
And these final four I’d like you to write in your workbook…
4) Somebody believes in you. 3) You play a more important role than you realize in your church. 2) You have more influence in your church than you think.
1) We agree with the late Pope John Paul when he spoke at the St. Louis Catholic Youth Rally in 1999: "Even though you are young, the time for action is now! Jesus does not have "contempt for your youth". He does not set you aside for a later time when you will be older and your training will be complete. Your training will never be finished. Christians are always in training. You are ready for what Christ wants of you now. He wants you – all of you – to be light to the world, as only young people can be light. It is time to let your light shine! And there are many other reasons why you might be here today. But in the end, we affirm what Paul said to young Timothy. For what he said to him is a principle by which we call you to as well. ADVANCE SLIDE
don't let anyone put you down because you're young. Teach believers with your life: by word, by
demeanor, by love, by faith, by integrity. 1 Tim. 4:12 (TM)
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summary statement: If you hear nothing else this weekend, you need to know that you matter! And you stand at the threshold of opportunity to influence change and make a difference more than anyone else.
In order for us to understand the difference we can make in the world we live in, we need to take a moment and talk about that world. Whenever I speak with parents, I am quick to tell them that they were “never your age.” What I mean by that is while they may have been teenagers, they were never teenagers in the world that you live in.
The generation born between 1988-1999 is named the “igeneration” (Part of Generation Y) because of your socialization on the internet. (wikipedia.com)
You live in a world where: ADVANCE SLIDEThe Soviet Union has never existed and therefore is about as scary as the student union. ADVANCE SLIDEThe U.S. has always been studying global warming to confirm its existence ADVANCE SLIDEYou never saw the shuttle Challenger fly. ADVANCE SLIDEAn automatic is a weapon, not a transmission ADVANCE SLIDEYou have never had to distinguish between the St. Louis Cardinals baseball and football teams. ADVANCE SLIDEBert and Ernie are old enough to be your parents. ADVANCE SLIDEBanana Republic has always been a store, not a puppet government in Latin America. ADVANCE SLIDEMichael Jackson has always been bad, and greed has always been good. Alternative: MJ hasn’t always looked like this (this is an extra slide included in your powerpoint) ADVANCE SLIDEPeeps are not a candy, they are your friends. ADVANCE SLIDEWith little need to practice, most of you do not know how to tie a tie. ADVANCE SLIDEYou don't remember when "cut and paste" involved scissors and computers have always suffered from viruses. As you can see, this world is unique to any other period in history. So it’s important for us to look at a few truths about today’s world.
1. We live in a world that tells us what we have makes us who we are. (economic manipulation) a. In the marketplace today, products are advertised more for their image value than for their practical value. For example, students walking through a mall in Philadelphia have encountered this
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sign in front of one of the stores - “Come see all the beautiful and exciting merchandise we have for you. Touch it, feel it, smell it, pick it up, try it on, need it, want it, pay for it with cash or without cash, now or later. It will make you happy, intelligent, accepted, loved, pretty, younger, older.” [Thom S. Rainer, The Bridger Generation, p. 90]
NOTE to trainer: This game is designed to illustrate the power of money in our lives.
GAME: Stand Up / Sit Down - various ways that money has affected our lives. Stand up if…you get more than $20 a week in allowance. Stand up if…you are carrying a personal credit card. Stand up if…you are carrying your own cell phone. Stand up if…you or your parents have spent more than $50 on a pair of shoes. Stand up if…you’ve eaten fast food in the last week. NOTE to Trainer: If everyone is not standing at this point, invite the remainder to stand. Sit down if…you’ve ever purchased anything by Abercrombie & Fitch (HOLLISTER) Sit down if…you’ve ever purchased anything over the internet.this month. Sit down if…if you’ve ever seen a Gap commercial Stand back up…if you understand a Gap commercial NOTE to Trainer: Have everyone sit down at this point. ADVANCE SLIDE A. Students have quite a large discretionary income at their disposal. According to The Harris Interactive Youthpulse, Generation Y Spends $172 Billion Annually: capita; - Teens (ages 13-19) spend at a rate of $94.7 billion annually, or $3,309 per capita; -Young adults (ages 20-21) spend at a rate of $61.3 billion annually, or $7,389 per capita. -Fifteen percent (15%) of youth spending is done online Teens were responsible in one way or another, for the spending of 172 billion (with a “b) dollars, not including the billions of dollars they influenced the spending of! And it’s not that students actually have that kind of money…(stand up if you have that kind of money…) All this data is a couple years old! But what we know that people are spending more than they’re bringing in! B. What about fear? -Pre-teens (ages 8-12) spend at a rate of $19.1 billion annually, or $946 per
ADVANCE SLIDE We live in a post September 11 (9/11) world that is easily
driven by fear of the smallest things… even our shampoo bottles on airplanes! Do you worry about what college or university you’ll be able to get into? If you do get accepted into the college you would like to go to, do you worry how you will pay for it? What about paying for your car, or your prom, or your next pair of jeans, or purchasing the latest iPod or game system? Do you wonder
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where the money will come from to cover those costs? Do you wonder if there will ever be enough? Fear can be a strong motivator when it comes to financial matters. Not only fear of economic failure, but also fear of not being accepted, or fitting in, or the illusion of not being able to enjoy the latest and greatest.
2. We live in a world where the term “family” is constantly changing. (broken homes, blended families, single parent families)
I’d like for everyone in the room to stand up (everyone stands). Now I’d like for this half of the room to sit down. Look around the room. Statistics tell us that in a room this size, everyone standing will be touched in some way by divorce, either personally or vicariously through a friend you came with. According to Barna Research Ltd.,(www.barna.org) as of the end of the year 2004, 35% of all adults in the United States have experienced at least one divorce during their lifetime. Among Christians, 35% are currently or have previously been divorced. Statistically, that means at least half of those of you standing will either be divorced, see your parents divorce. Gone are the times when divorce was something that affected people you distantly know. It affects all of us now. Furthermore, today the word family has many meanings. I want to hear from you, what do you think that the word family means or what do you think society means when it uses the word. (Get responses from the audience)
ADVANCE SLIDE (Show slide of cover of Rolling Stone magazine with same sex marriage) Not
only is the word changing, but many are promoting the differences that we hear. Many of the magazines and television shows that we read and watch are considering same sex marriages to be as normal as heterosexual marriages. Television dramas now find it politically correct to have at least one actor or actress to portray a homosexual. This is a big change from what we saw 20 - 30 years ago. NOTE to trainer - make sure that as you talk about the changing picture of the family the point is made perfectly clear that the homosexual is not the enemy but that infidelity and ultimately, Satan, is the enemy. The term “family” is evolving. Family is not necessarily who lives at your house, but it could be those who simply care the most about you. Many teenagers have begun to look outside the walls of their own homes in search of some who they would call family because of the breakdown of their biological one. Some students have even gone as far as literally divorcing themselves from their parents through the legal system. ADVANCE SLIDE One example of the anguish that people are facing in the demise of the foundation of the family is found in the song by recording artist P!nk in her song “Family Portrait” VIDEO CLIP: Pink Music Video: Family Portrait While economics and family matters are notable conditions of this generation, there is one more area
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that clearly shows the distinction that this generation has from those that have gone before it. ADVANCE SLIDE
3. We live in a world where truth is based on your perspective rather than absolutes. (moral relativism)
We need to go no farther than the one of the largest sporting events in the world to illustrate how this is being played out in society today: ADVANCE SLIDE June 2006, Bryan Lange was in the audience of a Chicago cable show where they were (www.pyschobabble.com) interviewing Bears’ safety Chris Harris. Harris promised Lange Super Bowl tickets, if the Bears went to the “Big Dance.” Fast forward to January 2007, The Bears claimed the NFC championship. Lange contacted Harris for the tickets and “Da Bears” safety blew Lange off saying that he had been joking. Bryan didn’t think so and protested outside bears HQ with sign: ”Chris Harris you promised. “ After all, he has proof…the interview was taped! The reality of this story is the ease with which our culture discards truth. The happy ending is that Lange’s dream came true due to Chicago ticket broker’s “Sit Close Tickets” empathy for Bryan’s dilemma. Fans everywhere enjoyed justice vicariously threw Bryans’ victory! Perhaps some of greatest tragedies of the past decade have been the various school shootings that have taken place. In what we hoped were safe places, our schools have become war zones. In Columbine, we witnessed two boys who took justice (their version of it) into their own hands and executed a select number of students before turning their guns upon themselves. Their perspective became their truth, and many have suffered because of it.
ADVANCE SLIDE What about baseball, America’s favorite past time? Modern day sports illustrate
how this is being played out in society today. How about the controversy surrounding Barry Bonds and many other major leaguers use of steroids to enhance their game? Here you have a man that is close to breaking the home run record, adored as a hero by millions, and testing positive for play enhancing drug use. Creating the appearance of truth but supporting it with a lie. And what about the rash of people in the news for living double lives: ADVANCE SLIDE Martha Stewart with her stocks, ADVANCE SLIDE Ken Delay’s of Enron creating their own version of financial truth, ADVANCE SLIDE Ted Haggard with his Ministry. What’s even sadder is that we all have bought into this in one form or another. Lying & cheating are at an all time high in our societies. In our individualism, we tell ourselves that what we do doesn’t affect anyone else. And when we do cross the line, we rationalize it by saying that it’s just a little, it won’t hurt. Even the good kids are not exempt from this. Josh McDowell asked 1,000 teens if they would cheat on a test if they
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felt they had to, 91% of the teens answered yes. He then asked 1,000 teens, who considered themselves to be a Christian the same question. The answer was the same---91% said they would cheat if they felt they had to. [Josh McDowell, Right from Wrong.] 64% of born again Christian teens believe that copying CDs for friends and unauthorized music is not a moral issue, compared with 66% of non-Christians. (2004) “So, where does this leave us?” ADVANCE SLIDE 1. It leaves us wrestling with real questions and no real answers. (moral relativism) In this vacuum of what’s really true, we find ourselves with a lack of possibilities. The truth seems to be elusive and many times, the leaders that we look up to for answers, can only provide guidance that seems hollow and trite. And find that we are staring blankly at questions like…What matters most? What’s wrong with that? We live in a world where so many share the belief that “What’s true in one situation may not be true in another situation.” And in a real sense, we throw up our hands and respond with… Whatever! ILLUSTRATION: Use a case study - tension-getter
2. It leaves us wrestling with a real spiritual hunger and no place to satisfy it. (spiritual hunger) We are as a culture are SO spiritually hungry people are having spiritual awakening while eating a cinnamon roll! The Bongo Java coffee shop in Nashville, Tennessee, has the "Nun Bun” that became international news in 1996, following the find in the folds of its pastry, resembling Mother Teresa! (Picture of Mother Teresa bun is in the workbook) Or Jesus on your toast! [http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/4562170.stm] It’s like people are suddenly trying to get in touch with their spiritual side. This is proven by a quick trip to any Barnes and Noble bookstore. The spirituality section is growing at a high rate. Many students who profess God are on a type of spiritual quest, seeking from a variety of belief systems to find a faith that seems to fit. You can find people who may claim Jesus Christ in one situation, and the tenets of Buddhism in another. It’s like they’re walking down a cafeteria line of spirituality and filling their tray with whatever seems to make sense or fit at the time. And when they sit down to eat, they find that they’re still hungry when they’re done. ADVANCE SLIDE 3. It leaves us wrestling with a real loneliness and not knowing where to fit in. (sense of belonging)
VIDEO CLIP - Scene from “Never Been Kissed”
So many of us have gone to great lengths to be accepted and to fit in. Some things aren’t so bad, we join sports teams, clubs on our campus, even volunteer. But when we don’t feel like we have found a place where people can accept us for who we are, when we can’t be honest, open, and develop meaningful relationships, than the ugly face of loneliness causes us to isolate ourselves or
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compromise any of the values we may have held onto. The scary thing is that this even happens within the churches we go to. Watch this clip, notice how important a true community of faith can be in our life.
VIDEO CLIP - Belonging - Student involved in the nation of Islam
Transition - In the midst of these issues, there is some really good news. What I’d like you to do right now is… • • • • PLAY COMMON BOND - Get with 3 other people that you didn’t come with and list as many things as you can that you have in common, don’t mention anything spiritual at this point. Now join with another group and write down as many things as you can that you have in common in your spiritual lives. With the whole group, ask, “Now what do we, as a whole group, have in common? We have many things that we have in common, and even more in common within the faith that we hold. We share things like communion, baptism, special customs, words, phrases…and also a shared history (hold up the Bible). This is our history. This story is our story. This Book, this Bible is the reason we belong together. This is where it starts to get extreme (like we told you it would at the beginning). • Have you ever seen the Bible this way? Have you ever felt a connection to it like this? Has it become more to you than simply a book that you were told to read to become a better Christian? This book, this story, this story of a people of God. This is what connects us--you and I--in our hearts--to the heart of God. Without this (the Bible) we have no story. Without this book we have no customs; we have no words or phrases, no shared connection, and we have little in common as a Church, as a people. Our beliefs connect us. • And we continue to tell this story, to write with our lives. We are the Acts 29 of the story. The book of Acts tells about the birth of the church. We are that church. While Acts only has 28 chapters, we are continuing the story of what it means to be the people of God, in relationship with God, proclaiming the good news of God. One person has said that the Bible is a completed work that isn’t finished yet. Our lives are part of that finishing. Therefore, we must stand up, like those who have gone before us and proclaim with one heart and one voice… (The Apostles Creed is written in the workbook) ADVANCE SLIDE
I believe in God the Father Almighty Maker of heaven and earth; And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord: Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried.
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He descended into hades; on the third day He rose again from the dead and ascended into heaven; And sitteth at the right hand of God the Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Church universal, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen. Say something like: “We’ve looked at the world in which we live. We know about the issues that we wrestle with. Now how are we going to connect the two? Our choice is to be worship-centered.”
NOTE to Trainer: This is background information for your edification.
By definition, worship is that action or those actions by which a person ascribes worth to something or someone. The true definition allows for a series of actions, a process; it is not limited to any one or any particular kind of action like singing. Look how Paul begins this famous verse, “Therefore, brothers, in view of God’s mercy….” The word therefore is a clue for us; apparently Paul is making this huge statement based on what he has just said. So what has he just said? And what does it have to do with the mercy of God? In other words, whenever we see the word "therefore" it's important to find out why the writer put it there for. If you stop and take the time to look you will read the incredible story Paul tells in chapters 9, 10 and 11. It is the story of the people of Israel- God’s chosen people. It is the story of a God who wanted a people to call His very own, and He seemed to want it so badly that He couldn’t take no for an answer! It is the story of a people who resisted and rebelled against God, and still He persisted and pursued His children like the perfect parent would. Finally, the heart of God won out, and He (through Christ) drew the family circle larger and larger, so that it would no longer be one nation or ethnic group that would be the people of God, but now it would all of those who would call on the name of the Lord. What an unbelievable message! Here is the God of the universe so loving and patient, and yet so desperate to have His people close to Him that He continued to reach farther and farther, outdoing Himself at every point until He had drawn the circle large enough to adopt in anyone willing to belong. And now, says Paul, “in view of God’s mercy,” there is only one way to respond, one way to say “thank you” for all that He has done for us! In response to the goodness and love of God, how can we respond with anything less than our entire lives? Notice how Paul describes these sacrifices; they are now to be “living” sacrifices as opposed to the “dead sacrifices of the Old Testament. Believers and their lives are the only sacrifices worthy of God, and beyond that it is not in the dying, but in the living that we are acceptable sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God. It’s important now that we understand that the act of giving ourselves over completely as living sacrifices is equated with the Greek word “latreia,” translated as “worship.” In the original Greek, “latreia” carried the definition of service or religious reverence. So, with the original definition in mind, Paul is saying that believers truly worship when their lives are lived entirely in response to God’s nature, His purpose, and His good gifts to His people. True worship arises because God has called and continues to call us, His people, the Church. As an echo or an answer, the Church’s worship directed to God is a 10 of 53 His Page response to gifts.
What does the word “worship” mean to you? What do you think of when you hear that word? NOTE to Trainer: solicit interaction and discussion from participants here. It’s all that but it’s so much more. Paul describes worship in a way different than how we seem to be using it today. ADVANCE SLIDE Romans 12:1
I urge you, brothers, in view of
God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship. According to what Paul said in Romans, I offer everything (my school work, my family, my social life, my personal life, my job, my entire existence) to God in worship. Don’t miss this crucial point- the story of God’s love for His people found in our Bibles is the basis of our worship. So in order to truly worship, we as believers have to know and remember this story, our story! This definition of worship should change
how we live. It completely puts in focus the areas of today’s culture that we talked about. to how Eugene Peterson says it in The Message.
remember what they are, don’t you? Moral relativism, spiritual hunger, and the desire to belong. Listen here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping,
eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Romans 12:1
So in order to be “worship-centered”, we need to understand that…
1. It’s all about the story
a) An article in Fast Company magazine tells the story of Nike Corporation: In the wooded hills of Beaverton, Oregon, there’s a class in session at Nike Headquarters for all of its new employees. It seems there’s more to this company than learning how to make running shoes. “Nike University”, as some refer to it, is a place where those new to the company hear the story - the “Nike” story - from it’s humble beginnings to the present. Why is that? One of the training managers sees it this way: “When people understand why we exist, what our foundation is, and who we are today, than they’ll understand what we’re trying to accomplish.” (Tim Milburn has bibliography info. on this magazine) Nike is successful, in part, because they take the time to share the story of where Nike's been with employees. As a result, employees have a better idea of where their company’s going. Nike dedicates itself to telling it’s story to every employee so that they feel connected to the original passion with which the company was started. ADVANCE SLIDE b) Play a game where they put the stories of the Bible in chronological order. Let’s just go through the highlights of what makes up our story. Look at this big piece of butcher paper we’ve hung on the wall. NOTE to Trainer: Go over to the butcher paper and draw a horizontal line from one end of it to the other. Let’s say this is a timeline that represents the entire biblical story. What goes at the beginning? (Creation) What goes at the end? (Revelation) What else? What’s next? Etc… Creation Flood Abraham / Covenant Moses 10 Commandments / Exodus
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Exile Restoration--Return from Exile Life of Christ Pentecost Paul--Missionary journeys Us Revelation I would tell you that we’re living in here (between Paul and the Second Coming). We’re continuing to write this story as to what it means to be the people of God. c) Point out the timeline on the wall that students will write their names on during the praise and worship time. VIDEO CLIP – Amistad Introduction of Clip - The movie "Amistad," based on a true story, chronicles the incredible journey of a group of enslaved Africans who overtake their captor's ship and attempt to return to their beloved homeland. When the ship, La Amistad, is seized, these captives are brought to the United States where they are charged with murder and await their fate in prison. This scene happens right before the prisoners will be sentenced. ADVANCE SLIDE
2. It’s more than a religion; it’s a relationship:
a. Show how “worship-centered” answers the snapshot dilemma’s mentioned above: • • Provides us with a means of belonging. Provides us with a sense of identity and significance. Provides us with a place to discover truth and define values.
b. Point out our place in the story (the gap between Acts & the Apocalypse) **This is where our faith becomes radical, it’s where this simple faith, this simple concept of being a people of God becomes extreme, extreme in the sense that this relationship is the most important relationship of everything we do. Remember the quote we shared with you at the beginning?
“The greatest Christian revolutions come not by the discovery of something that was not known before. They happen when somebody takes radically something that was always there.” - H. Richard Niebuhr That’s what we are talking about when we say “Extreme!” ADVANCE SLIDE(2)
3. It’s a lifestyle:
a. RE-Read Romans 12:1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and
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pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship. Romans 12:1 (NIV) b. Share the definition of “worship-centered”: Living life in worship, day in and day out with consistency, we experience the absolute truth of a loving God; our spiritual hunger is filled not by a religion but by relationships with God and each other in Christ; and since we're all looking for a place to call home--God's left the light on for us--we belong.
Praise & Worship time ADVANCE SLIDE
• Worship Centered LIVING gives us reason to celebrate. . .(Joshua 24) No story demonstrates this quite as well as Joshua 24. Remember, this is the end of Joshua's life. He is standing before his people, God's people, and asking them to once again unite together. He reminds them of what God has done for them, of the cost of being the people of God, and he cautions them against making too hasty of a decision. He warns them that they must choose carefully and wisely WHOM they will serve. LISTEN…Joshua 24 The children of Israel chose WORSHIP-CENTERED LIVING. They chose God. We can also choose Him. We can choose to unite our souls with that of Christ's, to take up our cross and follow Him, to find. OUR PLACE IN THE STORY OUR REASON FOR LIVING AND A FAMILY TO WHICH WE BELONG. Time of Communion (with confession & repentance) TRAINER: NEED 2-3 people to help / SONG? We are going to enter into a time of commitment and celebration. Joshua 3:5 says, "Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things." He was speaking to the Israelites just before they crossed into the Promised Land. He was reminding them that GREAT things await them, but their hearts and hands must be pure and they must be devoted to the task at hand and to the TASK MASTER…God. I would ask you this evening, as we begin this commitment and celebration time together, how is your heart? How is your commitment? Are you ready to take your faith to the extreme? Are you ready to join hands with your friends in Christ to live as Kingdom builders? Our time of commitment will begin on a very serious note, intentionally. You see, I'd like to make sure you have time to contemplate worship-centered living as defined by Romans 12:1. Maybe you'd like to turn in your Bibles and read that Scripture over and over again allowing God to reveal to you what it means for your life. As you read, we will sing. You may join. You may kneel. You may stand. You may have some sin you need to confess, a relationship you need to mend. You may do whatever it takes to be alone with God. ENTER INTO HIS PRESENCE. COMMUNE WITH THE FATHER.
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We will come out of our time with communion and with a chance to identify with the Lord. As you sense you are ready to embrace worship-centered living, to make your faith extreme, come forward to receive the elements. We will hold the elements and bless you as you take them. You may also then go a write your name on the timeline as a symbol that you are embracing the story of Christ. Your name is not only a symbol that you have made His story your story, but a marker in history for you. From this point on, you will embrace the story of Christ as your story. You will find your place of significance in the way you live our His story, and you will use this story as your moral compass. Trainer Note: You may want to organize your praise and worship time around the following key points: 1. Worship is how we respond to God’s call. (reclaim) Possible song ideas: You Alone, The Heart of Worship, Lord You Have My Heart 2. Worship is who we are not what we say. (respond) Possible song ideas: We Want To See Jesus Lifted High, In The Secret Place, 3. Worship binds us together. (retell) Possible song ideas: Give Us Clean Hands,
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NOTES to Trainer: Saturday morning will focus again about what it means to be part of the people of God. Having explained “our place in the story,” the question at hand will be “What does the Bible say the family of God is supposed to do or look like? What are the practices of the healthy family?” The point is that the individual exists more for the church than the church does for the individual. The church isn’t something you add to the basic, nuclear, family. The church is made of the building blocks of healthy families. We need to make sure that we keep this on a corporate level; this is not a seminar about individuals- it is about “us”- the people of God, the people in the Story, the Church. Our individual stories make sense only when they are woven into the overarching story of God. Start of day: • • • Breakfast is done. Musicians begin with something upbeat. Start with the Turbo Tic-Tac-Toe game.
The game is in the back of the workbook. After the winner of the game is announced, bring the focus of the group back with some music. Begin your presentation on the Rhythms Title Slide.
RHYTHMS - THE 6 WORSHIP-CENTERED PRACTICES OF A HEALTHY YOUTH MINISTRY
Let’s say you’re talking to one of your friends about a song that’s really popular but not necessarily has the most appropriate lyrics. In those situations you often will hear the other person say something like… “I don’t really listen to the words, I just like the _________.” We all kinda like the beat. The beat gets your heart pumping. The beat is what moves you? But what exactly is a rhythm? How would you describe a rhythm?
NOTE to trainer: solicit answers and discussion for this question.
Possible answers 1. regular 2. on-going To get an a better idea of what rhythm is, watch this video clip: VIDEO CLIP: Mr. Holland’s Opus clip
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Rhythm organizes music. Rhythm keeps everything moving smoothly. Noise is unorganized sounds, all happening at the same time. But music has a flow, different parts of a band play specific notes at specific intervals, all based upon the rhythm of the music. When we work together it’s music, but if we don’t work together, it’s just noise. Last night we described ourselves as a family. Families have daily, regular, on going activities that we could call rhythms. And healthy families have chores or responsibilities that they are responsible for. (schedule, celebration, and responsibilities as rhythms)” Stand up if you: • • • • • • • • • • • • take out the trash clean the bathroom do the dishes mow the lawn feed the pet wash the car empty the dirty diaper hamper vacuum dust make your bed clean your room setting the table
“Stand up if have a maid and you don’t have to do any of this? Shame on you. Are you guys lazy bums or what?” “Stand up if you haven’t stood up yet…you people need to do the following chores…pull out a list.“ “We feel that you are deprived of the blessing of serving.” NOTE to trainer: Make this group actually responsible for cleaning something later on during break such as the lunch trash. Question: What are the results of not participating in the rhythms of your family? (frustration, punishment, restriction, guilty feelings) How does it make you feel? (Distanced from the relationship) NOTE to Trainer: Talk about your own experience on a team- a personal story. A successful or effective teamwork experience and how it felt.
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Just like families and teams have rhythms, we believe that church families and youth ministries have practices that are rhythms too. And we see these rhythms throughout the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. In order for your church to take its place in the story of God, you will have to commit yourselves to these rhythms that have been around since the beginning. When you do that your youth ministry will stop making noise and start making music. And, when we work together on these rhythms we get these kind of results… VIDEO CLIP: Mr. Holland’s Opus clip #2 So, let me introduce you to 6 rhythms that will help you establish a healthy youth ministry. These are simple practices that have been around for centuries. If we take them seriously, then we can move these practices to the forefront and become radical about what we believe.
NOTE to Trainer: After each of the habits of a healthy youth ministry are presented, we want our seminar participants to say or at least think, “Does our youth group do that?”
#1 Developing Community- Rhythm of relationships
Video Clip - “One Man Band” I know you’ve heard this one before- maybe you were the one that said it, “I don’t have to go to church to be a Christian….” But when we look at the Bible like we’ve been looking at it this weekend that just isn’t true. In fact it doesn’t even make sense. You can’t have a one man marching band- you need everybody- the flutes, the tubas, the drummers, the trumpet players, the people spinning those flags or rifles or whatever else they find laying around the house. It takes everyone to make a marching BAND! In the same way, faith was never meant to be lived out alone. God built us to need one another, and your church’s success or failure, your youth ministry’s success or failure depends on the unity and close connections between people. One man marching bands don’t work. You can’t have a band with only one person. Truth is, you can’t
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have a real church without a community either. Define: What does the word community mean? It’s your family of faith. Your church. Are people safe in your youth group or church? Yes, I mean physically safe, but I also mean “safe” in many other ways too. Are people safe from gossip? Will a person be judged in your group? Will a person be shunned or ignored in your group because he or she doesn’t act right, dress right or drive the right car? If a person isn’t safe in your group, then that person won’t be able to consider the people in your youth group to be family. We’re all in this thing together, you know. That’s how God has planned it from the beginning. In your workbook is a passage of Scripture found in the second chapter of Acts (the book about the first churches ever created). 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. 44 ALL THE BELIEVERS WERE TOGETHER AND HAD EVERYTHING IN COMMON. 45 Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. Did you catch verse 44? That’s the key phrase in the whole paragraph, the rest of the verse just define what that really looks like. Wouldn’t it be great if our churches and youth groups were together and had everything in common? Here’s a question for you: If a Russian Christian and an American Atheist were running the 100 yard dash for a gold medal at the Olympic Games, who would you root for? Which one is more on your team? I guess your answer would show us how you define yourself. Are you an American first who just happens to be a Christian? Or are you a Christian who just happens to be an American? Tough stuff, right? Jesus makes it clear that he wants us to be His before we are anything else. We have to be Christians first, and athletes second. Christians first and musicians second.
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Christians first and students second. Christians first and Americans second. And here’s why. God intended us to be family. This is why this community rhythm is first. All of the rest of the rhythms happen in groups- family groups, not just as individuals! We have to start learning to speak in terms of we instead of me. As we take another look at our ministries, we need to work on developing the group before we jump into the rest of the practices. Ultimately we are saying that community is the family of believers. Jesus said the greatest commandment is to Love God and love your neighbors…it’s all about relationship. NOTE to Trainer − Try to find your own story here, but if you can't, use the below story
ILLUSTRATION: I want to tell you a story about Christie. I met Christie in the fall of 1997 while volunteering at the alternative high school in our neighborhood. The first time I saw Christie, she was the picture of rage- the dark, baggy clothes, the long, stringy hair, the massive leather jacket, the (illegal) chains hanging out of her pockets. I know you “can’t judge a book by its cover,” but this was more than an “outfit” Christie admitted; this look was a statement. She was not just from a broken home, she was from an exploded home; she had never lived at one address for more than a year and a half in her entire life, and she spent at least a portion of that life being passed back and forth between feuding parents. This was probably the single angriest kid I had ever seen in my entire life, and why not? Over a period of time, we convinced Christie that she was worth liking and loving. It did not happen quickly. We first discovered Christie in the middle of the Fall semester, and it probably was the middle of the spring before we could convince her to show up at the church, and even then, her coming was not so much out of her own spiritual curiosity as much as it was to be with those of us willing to be known as her friends. Please don’t misunderstand, at this point in her “journey”, Christie was not what most of us would call a Christian. She was not a believer; her life reflected no heart commitment, but the attractiveness of our family of faith was beginning to make her aware of what she wasn’t- she started to notice some of these things that she didn’t have. It was during the fall semester of her junior year, while she was living with her father in Midwest City (a suburb of Oklahoma City, about 30 minutes east of the church), that Christie made the decision to subject and submit her life story to the continuing story of God and His people. We had been talking about all that God would want to do for her, in her and with her, if ever given the opportunity. My wife and I had
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been so careful not to leverage or intimidate Christie to a place of decision. Christie was much too stubborn to ever be pressured into anything. Christie wasn’t leveraged into faith; she was romanced into faith by God the Father through His people at Oklahoma City First. Christie had come to faith by watching the family of God behave like a family. “And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” (Acts 2:47) Christie had now willingly entered into the process of being initiated, even adopted into The family. Now, I would like to tell you that things changed radically and quickly for Christie, but in all reality, the only major difference now was this: we had one more thing in common, there was another level at which she belonged to this community. To be honest, Christie was still struggling with a drug problem. She desperately wanted to quit, but her immediate family opted not to help- they had their own problems. Her dad sat her down on the bed and said, “Christie, we are rooting for you! We want you to be able to break free from drugs, but you need to know something. I have chosen a lifestyle that includes drugs. I can handle it, and I am going to keep doing it.” Because she knew she wouldn’t be able to quit, she moved out of her dad’s house with his complete blessing. She moved in with her mother who, like her father, had chosen a lifestyle that she didn’t want to give up. And again, Christie had to this point been shaped enough by the story of God and His people, and by God’s people themselves that she said, “I can’t overcome all that I have to overcome and live here.” Now, over a period of time, she had come to the awareness that it was not okay for a member of the family of God to do pot, that it was not okay for a member of the family of God to drink to the point of alcoholism. And don’t for a minute believe that her decisions to move out and away from mom and dad were somehow demonstrative of a lack of care and concern for her own family. Nothing could be farther from the truth. In fact, Christie’s decisions to separate herself were made for the benefit of her family. It was and continues to be Christie’s dream that one day she could be involved in the reclamation of her own family. In the meantime, Christie continued to be formed into the family of God. A godly family in our church recognized Christie’s need for a place to live. Ron and Ellen opened their doors, and Christie moved in and stayed for the remainder of her high school days. One Sunday, Christie noticed the announcement for all interested baptism candidates. She brought the announcement to me and asked for an explanation. “What is baptism?”, she asked, “and what does it mean?” “It is a public proclamation, a public testimony,” I answered. “It is both your public statement of faith and a ritual whereby you are ‘initiated’- in an official way- into this family of faith.” She said, “I think I’m ready for all of that now.” Christie correctly had the impression that this was a pretty
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monumental decision that she was about to make- the kind you want your family to see, so she called her dad, she called her mom, and she said “I’m going to get baptized on Sunday night, and I would like for you to be there.” They both agreed, but then on the day of the ceremony, both called and said they weren’t coming. She was be crushed. As the one who does much of the baptizing at our church, I’m not used to seeing baptism candidates with such long faces. She attended the pre-service baptism candidates meeting and never cracked a grin. After the meeting, I took her aside and I said to her, “This is supposed to be a pretty good day for you. Do you want to wait to be baptized?” “No,” she replied, “I’m ready.” I baptized Christie that night. After the ceremony, she got dried off and went home without a word. I remember feeling these strange contradictory emotions that night. On the one hand, I rejoiced in Christie’s public testimony. But on the other hand, I agonized over Christie’s loneliness. I have to admit that I myself felt more defeated than I did anything else. But I will never forget what happened the next day. After school, Christie rolled into the parking lot and walked into the church with a recognizable spring in her step. She walked into our offices, and you have to listen to what she said. “I know you all could tell that I was pretty disappointed last night when my family couldn’t be there. But then it hit me- my family was there.” Get it? We are not in the business of breaking up family; we are still trying to redeem both her mom and her dad. But we absolutely are in the business of being family for those who belong to our groups. And let’s not forget something very important- when we say community, we don’t just mean the youth group. Community involves the entire family of faith, NOT JUST THE YOUTH MINISTRY. What keeps people of faith from being a family of faith or a Community? Walls, barriers, obstacles. You know them: judging, gossip, lying or deceit, lack of participation, mistrust, un-forgiveness. In order for us to build true community, these kinds of walls have to come down. What are you doing at your church to bring down these walls? In your notebooks, at the bottom of the page, you will see a box with directions to an activity called "The Hot Seat." If you've ever done this activity before, you know it can be an incredibly affirming activity for young people. Also, it is very effective in bringing down the walls between the people in your group. I challenge you and your youth group to set aside regular times for "The Hot Seat" or similar activities. I have another video I want you to see. This is what can happen if we never stop trying to wear our masks.
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VIDEO CLIP – Meet Brad Norton – A real Christian
No one is that much of a Christian. We're lying to ourselves if we think we can be that perfect, that upbeat all the time. If we wear a false mask, we risk alienating others from us, as Brad Norton did.
NOTE to Trainer: Work through all the following discussion questions and recommended resources. What words or phrases capture the concept? – put some of these words into some type of a water mark in the notebook Relationship Unity Not activities Intimacy sharing bonding vulnerability accountability holy friendship soul mates interdependence broken-ness Conceptually, how will this trait or habit be fostered? The ongoing practice of confession, repentance, and forgiveness What are the practical ways and methods by which this concept will become reality? accountability partners big sis/little sis sports teams small groups communion footwashing service project (see also servanthood) RESOURCES to recommend Up Close & Personal by Wayne Rice Crowdbreakers & Community Builders by Group
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ADVANCE SLIDE #2 Celebrating God- Rhythm of Praise
Last night we explored how a “worship-centered” model of ministry responds to three major snapshots of our current culture: moral relativism, the need to belong, and spiritual hunger. We said that: “Living life in worship, day in and day out with consistency, we experience the absolute truth of a loving God; our spiritual hunger is filled not by a religion but by relationships with God and each other in Christ; and since we’re all looking for a place to call home--God’s left the light on for us--we belong.” Eugene Peterson says it this way, “So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you:Take your everyday, ordinary life––your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life––and place it before God as an offering.” Romans 12:1 The Message So true worship is about honoring God in everything we do; sleeping, eating, walking around, work, school, relationships, homework, recreation, all aspects of life is praise. There is, however, another aspect of praise that is vitally important for disciples of Christ. We call it the rhythm of celebration or praise. Webster says that praise is “The offering of grateful homage in words or song as an act of worship.” That is in your work book on page 9. One of the more popular praise songs out today is called Let Everything That Has Breath Praise the Lord and it comes right out of Psalm 150. 1 Praise the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens. 2 Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. 3 Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre, 4 praise him with tambourine and dancing, praise him with the strings and flute, 5 praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals. 6 Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD.
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Notice what is used in this psalm of praise: instruments (trumpet, harp, lyre, tambourine, string, flute, and cymbals), dancing (or worship art), and voices (breath). Scripture is full of passages that explode with praise to God for who He is and what He has done. The Story of God is filled with scenes or words of praise, celebration, and rejoicing. In fact, the word praise is mentioned 293 times, celebrate is mentioned 50 times and rejoice is mentioned 124 times. In recent years we have witnessed corporate worship experiences become intense moments of celebration and praise. We’ve seen students and adults move to a level of freedom where they are no longer concerned about what others think if they raise or clap their hands, shout words of joy to the Lord, or even bow on their knees in humble adoration of God. Here is an example of that…
VIDEO: David CROWDER VIDEO
There are two points that we need to know to help us in our understanding of praise or celebration. The first point is recognition. ADVANCE SLIDE
Most of us here have someone in our lives who is very special to us. That person may be your mom or dad, a brother or sister, aunt or uncle, granny or grampy or some other relative. That person may even be your best friend or a boy friend or girl friend. Whoever that person is they’re special to you. You have recognized some qualities, characteristics, and personality traits about that person that are attractive to you. And you really enjoy and appreciate those qualities. How many of us here today love God? Why? What is it about God that you love? What are some of God’s characteristics, attributes or qualities that you appreciate and enjoy? ADVANCE SLIDE Possible answers: Awesome, Compassionate, Creative, Deliverer, Faithful, Forgiving, Good, Gracious, Healer. Holy, Jealous, Just, Loving, Kind, Mighty, Omnipotent, Omnipresent, Omniscient, Patient, Powerful, Redemptive, Sovereign, Strong, Tender, and on and on and on. Scripture is loaded with passage after passage that praise God for who He is and what He has done. In your notebook on page 8 you’ll find a few examples that you really ought to read sometime. NOTE to Trainer: the below scripture is in the workbook. However, you may wish to also create a bookmark to hand out using the bookmark photocopy sheet. Obviously, this will need to be done
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ahead of time.
Pass out BOOK MARK if you made them Exodus 15:1-21 (Moses’ and Miraim’s Song) Isaiah 12: 1-6 (Song of Praise) Praise with shouts and singing: 33, 47, 66, 81, 95, 96, 98, 149, 150 Praise for God’s personal blessings: 18, 30, 34, 40, 92, 103, 107, 113, 116, 118, 146 Praise for God’s blessings to Israel: 68, 77, 100, 108, 124, 126, 129, Praise for God’s awesome majesty: 8, 24, 29, 46, 50, 90, 93, 114, 145 Praise for God’s law” 19, 119 Luke 1:46-55 (Mary’s Song or Mary’s Magnficant) Luke 1:67-79 (Zechariah’s Song) Revelation 19:1-8 (Hallelujah! Also the song from which Sonic Flood get their name) Praise moves beyond just simply saying “Praise the Lord” just for the sake of saying “Praise the Lord.” The rhythm of praise means taking the time to identify and articulate what it is about God that we are praising. Which lead us to our second point.
When we recognize special qualities and attributes of people we have the desire to express our appreciation or to celebrate the person and their qualities. Remember that special someone and the things you appreciate about them? Share with us things that you’ve done to celebrate and honor that individual. Possible answers: Giving them cards or gifts, sharing a song that communicates how you feel about that person, writing a poem, send them flowers, do something special for them (maybe doing the laundry, cleaning up the kitchen, washing the car), take them to their choice of restaurant, give them candy, etc. In the context of our relationship to God, we’ve already mentioned that throughout scripture we find several acts or gestures of praise: Singing, clapping or raising hands, shouting and making joyful noises, and yes, even the “D” word, dancing. However, praise isn’t limited to the exuberant use our hands or our voices. It’s been suggested that the kind of worship and praise experience that will attract and hold millennials is Liturgy and services that make use of the Christian symbols with a contemporary flair. Praise may take a more reflective approach using such methods as responsive readings or reciting creeds. Praise may also take shape in the reading and writing of prayers. Take for example this prayer that has been adapted from a prayer found in the Book of Common Prayer. Listen carefully to these
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words. “Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we, your unworthy servants, give you humble and heartfelt thanks for all your goodness and lovingkindness to us and to all people. We bless you for your creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life, but above all for your limitless love in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ; for the means of grace and for the hope of glory. And, we, humbly request, give us a sense of all your mercies, that our heart may be openly thankful, and that we may show forth your praise, not only with our lips but our life, by giving up ourselves to your service and by walking before you in holiness and righteousness all our days, through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom with you and the Holy Ghost be all honor and glory, world without end, Amen.”
Most of our groups and us do a pretty good job at praising the Lord with our voices, hands, and instruments. For the most part we come from churches where we’re given the opportunity to practice these using these elements whether it be in a worship service or in a youth worship service. This weekend we’ve had the opportunity to practice this form of praise. Now we’re going to practice the rhythm of praise through the re-writing of Psalm 23. Break up into groups of 3-4. Together you’re going to rewrite the 23rd Psalm in your own words. Each of you need to read it silently to your self keeping in mind that you are looking for characteristics and attributes of God. Feel free to make notes while you read. Then one of you in the group need to read the Psalm out loud while the rest of the group follows along. Pull your thoughts together and rewrite the psalm. After you’re done we going to hear each other’s work.
NOTE to Trainer: Ready the band or cue track for “I stand in awe of you "or better yet “Give us clean hands”. The goal is to close this section with a praise song. Note to Trainer: The following is an optional activity, if you have time or if you feel it is a winner of an idea. Time will have to dictate. Make sure these reader's cards are made ahead of time!
We want to wrap up our discussion by demonstrating one more method of praise. It’s simply called a reader’s theater. I need 5 volunteers to help me. (HAVE EACH READER READ 2 VERSES. AFTER THE 5TH READER READS “WHO IS HE, THIS KING OF GORY?” ALL 5 READERS READ IN UNISON “THE LORD ALMIGHTY––HE IS THE KING OF GLORY.”)
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Psalm 24 . READER 1: 1 The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; 2 for he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the waters. READER 2: 3 Who may ascend the hill of the LORD? Who may stand in his holy place? 4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to an idol or swear by what is false. READER 3: 5 He will receive blessing from the LORD and vindication from God his Savior. 6 Such is the generation of those who seek him, who seek your face, O God of Jacob. READER 4: 7 Lift up your heads, O you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. 8 Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle. READER 5: 9 Lift up your heads, O you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. 10 Who is he, this King of glory?
ALL READERS IN UNISON The LORD Almighty — he is the King of glory. NOTE to Trainer: Work through all the following discussion questions and recommended resources. • WHAT IS PRAISE? a recognition of and appreciation of the characteristics and the attributes of who God is, an offering, adoration.
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What words or phrases capture the concept? glorification magnification holy moments praise adoration gratitude honor awe Conceptually, how will this trait or habit be fostered? an overwhelming sense of God’s greatness What are the practical ways and methods by which this concept will become reality? creeds prayer Sunday morning worship Wednesday night Communion sacraments Music- singing and instruments Public reading of scripture Lighting the advent or salvation candle
CLOSE IN SONG
ADVANCE SLIDE #3 Witness- Rhythm of Reaching Out
JOHN STOTT quote: “The Church is the only organization that exists for the benefit of its non-members.”
Worship Driven-Outreach 3 words really seem to help us explain worship driven outreach: Attitude, Atmosphere, and Action.
• Attitude – How students care for each other reflects how they will care for those beyond the walls. It’s missional. Also it reflects a good understanding of Christian community. It’s asking the question: Who’s not here, and why? And what can WE do about it? It’s also practicing
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how to reach out on each other. It’s seniors in High school reaching out to the freshman, and “heaven forbid” the junior higher’s that already come. It’s looking at the empty chairs in our room and visualizing new people filling those chairs. If we can’t do it in here, how in the world will we be able to do it out there? One of our other trainers had this experience before… One Sunday night, after I had just moved to a new church, a bunch of the teens decided to go out to an A&W for food. They invited me to go along. First I declined, making up some lame excuse, but then one of the seniors came over to me and asked if my response was based on a lack of funds. I answered, “yes.” Then he said and did something I will never forget. He said, “don’t worry about it, I got you covered.” He paid for my meal, and in doing so, practiced the ATTITUDE of outreach on me.
• Atmosphere – This concept relates to climate in our programs: hospitality that is inclusive rather than exclusive. In computer terms, it’s being “user-friendly, or non-believer friendly. This is something that we can and must practice inside the walls of the church, so that when they do come, they will stay. Someone once said, “Teenagers will not leave a place where they are loved.” It is our job to make sure the atmosphere is not too foreign to them. If we don’t feel welcome, safe, and comfortable in here, then what makes us think our friends will? Ill. I Never Went Back. Noted youth speaker and author Duffy Robbins, recounts the story of his first visit to a youth group. “I walked in and they told us to take out our Bibles and turn to some book. I didn’t even know what a Bible was. Then they sang some songs they all knew by heart, and I didn’t have a clue. I really felt like I didn’t belong. Needless to say, I never went back.” (Paraphrased story told by Duffy Robbins at a NYWC seminar) This illustration points out the need to avoid speaking christianeze. Or using terms, language, and customs assuming that everyone understands what we’re saying. This means we never say, “you all know this one...” Or “remember the story in the Bible where….” Because maybe they all DON’T know it, and maybe they have NEVER heard that story in the Bible. When we start thinking in this way, we are beginning to understand the ATMOSPHERE of outreach. .” But, the atmosphere must also be carried outside the walls of our youth group and church.
• Action – This concept is the “intentional-doing” of outreach. It is asking the following questions: How will our calendars and our budgets show our commitment to outreach? How will where we sit at youth group and at school change because we are committed to outreach? How will who we talk to at youth group and at school change because outreach drives us? How will an outreach mindset change the way you see people who don’t know Jesus? When will your heart break for those whose eternities are still up for grabs? Ill. Why Didn’t You Say Something?
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Mark Shipp went to church on Sundays. He didn’t make a big thing of it, but he played guitar for the worship team and he was considered a leader in the youth group. Mark was trying to do what was right without being...pushy. Just about every Friday, a friend at school, Josh, would ask: “So, what’cha got planned this weekend, Mark?” Mark would shrug, “Oh, you know….” “Tell me about it! Clean this, straighten that, mow the grass, wash the car! I work harder on Saturdays than I do on school days.” Mark would smile knowingly and shrug, “That’s the truth.” “That’s why I take Sunday off. Me, Tim, Joel, and some other guys get together in the morning to play soccer. Do ya wanna come?” Mark would evade the question, “Oh, I’d like to, Josh, I really would, but I can’t. I go to church.” “Sure. Well, if you ever change your mind, the invitation stands,” Josh would say and then off he would go with a smile. Then one Friday late in the year, the ritual took a different turn. Mark had just evaded the question, explaining that he really wanted to play soccer but couldn’t, and Josh just nodded as usual. But this time, he didn’t’ walk away. He just stood there, looking at Mark. Finally, he spoke. “Mark, for the past year I’ve invited you to play soccer, and you always say no. But not once have you invited me to church,” Jack continued, scratching his head. “Why?” (Adapted from the New Century Bible, page 1155) Sometimes we assume that people are not interested in church, or youth group, or God. But little do when know that God may be using us to draw people to Him. That is the ACTION of outreach. Corporate outreach is coming together and declaring our target; whom are we trying to reach? It is a team meeting to practice and prepare to go out and reach the lost for Christ. Outreach probably won’t be one on many; it can be one on one; but it’s best when it’s many on one. Say, sometimes the only way for a person to know Jesus or the Gospel is if we introduce them.
Activity: AMOEBA TAG Play this game of tag, where you start with only one person who is “it.” Once they tag someone, they are to link arms with that person and then together, try to tag others. As they tag others, they continue to link up until the chain grows and/or the “tagged” outnumber the “free.” Use this game as an illustration of how we are to go after the lost, working together, many on one, etc. After everyone has taken their seats… A burden for the lost is a result of a personal encounter with Christ. When we truly understand that lost things are important to God, then we will find the rhythm of outreach. Only then will lost things become important to us. It’s like this clip from the movie, “Schindler’s List.”
“Schindler’s List” is about a German man named Oscar Schindler. He worked to rescue Jews that were facing genocide during World War II. He hired them to work for him in his ammunition factory by selling what he to pay them for their work with his own money.
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At the end of the movie there is a scene where Schindler himself comes to the realization that if he had come up with more money or sold some of his personal belongings, he might have been able to save many more Jews from genocide at the hands of the Germans. Schindler, in this moment is beginning to see people the way God sees people...watch.
VIDEO CLIP: Schindler’s List clip- “I could have sold my pin to buy back one more.” NOTE to Trainer: Do not say anything between the Schindler’s list clip and the Deliriou5? song. Simply have the music start playing as soon as the clip ends, light the candle and set it in the front of the room for everyone to see. ADVANCE SLIDE [Presentation Note: The song will begin playing when the first set of lyrics comes on the screen and continue to play until you click out of the last screen of lyrics at the end of the song. Make sure you check this prior to showing your presentation]
Deliriou5? - Live and in the Can
ADVANCE SLIDE There is a light that shines in the darkness. There is a light that shines in the darkness. ADVANCE SLIDE His name is Jesus, His name is Jesus, His name is Jesus The Light of the world! (repeat) ADVANCE SLIDE YOU! Are the light of the world ADVANCE SLIDE A city on a hill cannot be hidden Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl ADVANCE SLIDE Instead they put it on its stand And it gives light to everyone in the house. ADVANCE SLIDE In the same way, let your light shine before men, That they may see your good deeds ADVANCE SLIDE And praise your Father who is in heaven ADVANCE SLIDE Father in heaven, hallowed be your name ADVANCE SLIDE Your kingdom come and your will be done On earth as it is in heaven ADVANCE SLIDE And Father give us today, our daily bread ADVANCE SLIDE And forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us ADVANCE SLIDE Father lead us not into temptation
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And deliver us from the evil one. ADVANCE SLIDE Because we say, Yours and Yours alone ADVANCE SLIDE Is the kingdom, is the power, is the glory ADVANCE SLIDE For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, Forever, ADVANCE SLIDE Forever and ever, Forever, Amen! ADVANCE SLIDE NOTE to Trainer: Pray and dismiss for a break at this point.
After the break: As we gather back together, let’s take few moments to review the last rhythm before we move on to the next.
What words or phrases capture the concept? rescue burden for the lost desperation
Conceptually, how will this trait or habit be fostered? Attitudes are outreaching Atmosphere is welcoming and we don’t project a “we’re a closed club” image Action - we will spend our resources going out and getting the lost
What are the practical ways and methods by which this concept will become reality? See you at the Pole: A good place to start, and to identify those at your school who you might team up with. Relational outreach: This is learning how to love first. “I don’t care how much you know until I know how much you care.” Telling your story: My life before Christ, how I met Christ, my life since. Then practicing this in front of your youth group. Testifying in the world to the world: In the hallways, and the lunchroom and class. It is practicing how to “steer” your conversations to where they are Spiritual in nature i.e. “Do you think about life after death, do you ever wonder if this life is all there is? VBS
ADVANCE SLIDE #4 Sabbath- Rhythm of Rest
Have you ever been on a trip, stopped to refuel and get munchies, and as you just start to get settled
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back into the ride you get the dark feeling you left something behind? It’s sort of like this…
VIDEO CLIP – Little Miss Sunshine
The next rhythm we’ll look at today is that of rest. How many of you are ready for a nap now? Well don’t get too excited ‘cause that’s not necessarily what we mean by rest. In our fast track society it’s easy for our lives to fill up with “noise” and “busyness” -so much so that our sensitivity to the presence of God is dulled. Those of us involved in ministry and leadership are especially vulnerable because we get so wrapped up in our ministries, consumed with doing, moving from one project to another until we reach a point where we gain more fulfillment and satisfaction in our “service” than in the One we are serving. Or we simply burnout. Our focus is blurred; our FM receiver is not quite on the station, and the signals we need to receive from God don’t seem to come in too clearly. Remember the old Mickey D’s slogan, “You deserve a break today”? The psalmist had a pretty idea when he said in Psalm 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.” He instructs us to chill out, slow down, break the routine and get quiet and be reminded of the forgotten or neglected things: who God is, who we are, and what God wants to be to us. It’s not so much that we “deserve” a break but rather we must take a break, change our routine in order to regain focus and maintain balance physically, emotionally, relationally and spiritually. Take Elijah for example. His incredible story of victory over some of the roughest and toughest pagan priests is found in 1 Kings 18. The line had been drawn in the sand and it was time to find out who was truly God. He stood face to face with 450 prophets of Baal and 400 prophets of Asherah on Mount Carmel and put them to the test. Elijah instructed them to build an altar and lay on it a slaughtered bull and call out to their god to see if he, she, or it would answer. He would do the same and the God who answered with fire would be declared God. The prophets agreed that this was a good plan and an altar was built. What followed was kind of a precursor to a Korn or Rob Zombie concert. They began ranting and raving, screaming and hollering, and the cutting and bleeding and yet their god never answered. Elijah began to taunt them and one Bible version suggests that maybe their god was on the toilet. As the afternoon wore on these sweaty, exhausted, and caked with blood prophets finally gave up. Now it was Elijah’s turn. He had the altar repaired and covered with his slaughtered bull. But then he added 12 stones representing the 12 tribes of Israel. Then he dug a trench around the altar. And then he had 12 jars of water (a precious commodity after three years of drought) poured onto the altar. It was enough water to drench the altar and fill the trench. Then he looked towards heaven and prayed a simple prayer and BOOM lightning struck and the altar with all of its contents was burned into oblivion. Suddenly the pagan prophets had other appointments and began to scatter. But they didn’t get too far and were slaughtered and Elijah’s God was declared the winner. Pretty cool, huh? But just nine verses later we find the same Elijah in the desert hiding under a tree like a whipped (whooped in the South) pup. He was exhausted, afraid and so depressed that he actually prayed
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to God that he would die. He had had enough and felt like he couldn’t go on any longer. The angel of the Lord shows up and takes care of Elijah’s basic needs: food, water and rest. This went on for a couple of days until Elijah was strong enough to travel again…and he did–– for forty days until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God. He found a cave, went in and rested for the night. Then the Lord appears to Elijah and asks him what he was doing there. Basically his response was I’ve busted my tail for You dealing with people who have rejected You, torn down Your altars, killed Your prophets and now I’m the only one left and they’re trying to kill me too. Knowing exactly what Elijah needed, God told him to stand on the mountain, in the presence of Lord, for the Lord was about to pass by him. And what happened next is so incredible. A huge wind blew in that just leveled the mountains. Then there was an earthquake followed by an unbelievable fire. Following the fire was, are you ready, a gentle whisper. What are considered incredible displays of the awesome strength and power of God, God says I’m not in the wind. I’m not in the earthquake. I’m not in the fire. But you will find me in the gentle whisper. Elijah had been a pretty busy prophet travelling across the desert during a drought, ministering to people along the way, facing the false prophets, running from Jezebel… God recognized Elijah needed a break in his routine. What about you? Have you been too busy lately to hear the gentle whisper of God? How about your youth group? Are you constantly in motion? Is your calendar filled up with activities just for the sake of having activities? Perhaps you’re caught in the rut of doing the same-o-same-o. Are you taking time to “Be still and know that He is God?” What are some ways you can build into your personal lives as well as the life of your youth group times where you can rest or break the routine? Here are some simple suggestions • • • • • • • Take your day off! No seriously! Silent Retreats Slim down the activity of the calendar Schedule monthly / quarterly yout group nights of reflection Journaling Occasional Fasting (radio, TV, computer, Internet, video games, food, etc.) Lent (giving up these things for a season)
The Folsom Zoo, a North American animal sanctuary, (outside Sacremento, CA) has found an interesting pattern: http://www.folsom.ca.us/depts/parks_n_recreation/zoo/ Animals on display need a day of rest. Here’s number 19 of their “fundamental principles”: Except for major holidays, the Folsom City Zoo shall be closed to the public on Mondays to provide a day of rest for the animals.
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Why is that? Here’s an email from the Folsom folks explaining: “The “day of rest” is primarily the day we schedule any medical procedures, and general medical checkups for the animals. It is also a day whereby keepers can do some serious exhibit maintenance – adding new substrates and structures that are sometimes difficult to complete when the zoo is open to the public. It is also a “quiet” day for the animals, and indeed a day of rest from public view!” -kaye banyard If the animal kingdom can figure out God’s deep dream for rest in our lives, maybe he can redeem the zoo of our lives! What if we weekly allowed God to check-up (search) our lives? What if we allowed the “Keeper” to do weekly soul maintenance on us? What if we let God reorder the “substructures” (relationships, schedules, plans) of our lives that is hard to do in the rush of life? What if we re-discovered the creative nourishment of “quiet” in Christ? This Rhythm of Sabbath-rest is about trust. Trust that God can do the things he has called us to without us for one day. Trust that if God rested in creating…we do to. Trust that ceasing, being still, and waiting on God will create space; not take it away. Trust that the terrifying things we are running from won’t hurt so bad if we face them with Jesus.
So when we talk about resting we’re talking about more than just taking nap, though that is not a bad idea sometimes. Rather we’re talking about intentionally planning times in your personal calendar as well as in the calendar of your local youth ministry when you move deviate from the regular routine for a time re-focusing and renewal.
PLAY SONG: Peace Be Still
NOTE to Trainer: Work through all the following discussion questions and recommended resources.
What words or phrases capture the concept? reflection devotion interruption
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speed bumps rest change of pace escape contemplation a spiritual pause Conceptually, how will this trait or habit be fostered? a need for spiritual renewal and a re-focusing [This section will also go along with these concepts/stories: true north, Elijah (1 Kings 18), Garden of Gethsemene(Matt 26), Rom.12:2] What are the practical ways and methods by which this concept will become reality? camp retreat prayer journaling intentionally spiritual vacation mission trips lent- don’t watch TV for a week silence fasting (not necessarily food) NOTE to Trainer: Make the connection that it’s important participants understand that these changes aren’t just to the youth calendar. A Youth Ministry can’t change unless the youth minister or youth ministers change at some time.
CLOSE WITH A FEW MOMENTS OF SILENCE AND DIRECTED PRAYER
Spiritual Formation and Discipleship- Rhythm of Becoming
OK! Enough with the resting, LET’S PLAY A GAME!!! GAME: Balloon Castles - (The balloon castles game communicates that spiritual growth is intentional, it is a group effort, and it takes time- it isn’t a “microwave” sort of thing; it’s a “crock-pot” sort of thing) Active Scripture Game--Balloon Castles [Get them up and moving around with a teaching game.]
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Divide the group into groups of 5-10. Give each group a package of balloons and a roll of 2” wide masking tape. Tell each group that they are to construct a castle of the balloons, using the masking tape to connect the balloons. All the balloons must be used, and each person must participate. That’s all the info they need. Tell them to be creative. Give them 10 minutes to construct their castles. And sit back and watch how they do it. After the time is up or the castles are completed, ask them how they decided to build their castle. Who took the lead? How were the decisions made? Was everyone happy? Etc… The Rhythm of Becoming is process-oriented, it is an ongoing and everyday commitment to process of becoming like Christ. Discipleship is not an exact science. It is not an equation that guarantees success. Like Reaching Out, Discipleship or the Rhythm of Becoming is about attitude, atmosphere, and action.
• Attitude – Do you all realize that as a member of the family of God, you are not only responsible for your own growth in Christ, but you are also responsible to make sure that your brothers and sisters in faith grow in Christ! IS THAT YOUR ATTITUDE? IS THAT THE ATTITUDE OF YOUR GROUP?
Atmosphere – This concept relates to climate in our programs: activities, events and lessons that all pull the same direction- toward God. What is the atmosphere in your ministry to teens? Do the teens in your church want to grow in Christ? Do the activities and events really encourage growth in Christ?
• Action – This concept is the “intentional-doing” of discipleship. It is asking the following questions: How will our calendars and our budgets show our commitment to growing in Christ? If there are students in our group that want to go above and beyond, will our ministry have anything to offer them? Does our youth ministry offer students devotional material that will deepen a relationship with Christ? DOES OUR MINISTRY CHALLENGE TEENS TO GROW SPIRITUALLY?
NOTE to Trainer: Work through all the following discussion questions and recommended resources.
What words or phrases capture the concept? discernment-decision making
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discipleship spiritual formation helping people to live godly lives in a secular world apprenticeship active faith Conceptually, how will this trait or habit be fostered? the relational transmission of truth and a hunger for growth What are the practical ways and methods by which this concept will become reality? Mentoring Pray together, pray for one another Accountability partners Bible study Sunday School use experiences to teach (teachable moments)
NOTE to Trainer: If you have time do the following:
Now, I want you to get back into your balloon castle building groups, and answer these two questions: 1. How can our ministry to teens be more intentional in helping teens to grow in faith? 2. How can we be involved in each other’s spiritual growth?
ADVANCE SLIDE #6 Compassion- Rhythm of Servanthood
OK everybody, let’s get started again. ILL. The Keynote “Beggar” A few years ago, a Conference on Compassion was held. As with many conventions, some of the attendee’s were running late to the first session. So late it seems, that many of them blew right by a beggar, who happened upon the convention. Most paid no attention to the man in rags, they were more concerned with finding their seats for what promised to be an unforgettable weekend on the issue of compassion. But then something very unexpected happened. The beggar walked down the center isle and was introduced as the keynote speaker. And before he opened his mouth, the disguised guest had already spoken volumes. Let’s start with a workable definition of compassion: ADVANCE SLIDE • Compassion is feeling your pain in my heart. ADVANCE SLIDE
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• • •
It’s suffering alongside of the sufferer. ADVANCE SLIDE It’s getting involved.
Feeling your pain.
Often times we joke, “I feel your pain, man.” But really, this a phrase the helps define the concept of compassion. Feeling your pain, in my heart. We need to remember that there is a difference between charity and compassion. This is compassion. Compassion is when there’s nothing between the one loving and the one being loved. John 11:35 has only two words. While they are simple, they speak volumes about compassion. They simply say, “Jesus wept.” He was weeping because His friend Lazarus had died and Lazarus’ friends were sad. Jesus was feeling their pain in His heart. • Suffering With….
Compassion demands that you change your plans to meet needs. Charity, while admirable, doesn’t demand a very big change in your plans or your heart. It is not just a one-day thing, or a pocket change issue. It is a lifestyle change, a mindset change. It really requires a focus change. Remember these are rhythms, ongoing practices and commitments, not just moments. VIDEO CLIP: Forest Gump - Sometimes there just aren’t enough rocks.
Suffering with doesn’t always include words. It is a presence. We are a presence to people who need a shoulder to cry on, or an ear to listen. We are a tangible expression of God’s love and presence. We are, as someone once said, Jesus with skin on.
When police begin an investigation, often times, for a variety of reasons, a common response by people they question is, “I just don’t want to get involved.” This response is in direct competition to compassion. As Christians we can never utter these words. Jesus commands to get involved. Period. But we also realize that compassion is a learned disposition. It’s not just about ministering to the least of these. It’s about being an advocate for anyone who needs an advocate. It’s asking who is my neighbor? And if Jesus answered, he’d say everybody. He might say, anyone you can touch is your neighbor. The problem is that sometimes we act like somebody else will step in and that we don't have to. What we fail to realize is that God may have purposely placed us in a person’s life to do the work of compassion in their lives. We can’t afford to let opportunities pass on by.
ILL. Dan Watson’s Story. Page 39 of 53
Dan Watson travels to high schools to tell his story. When he was in high school he played on the varsity football team. His senior year, his team lost in the State playoffs and their season was over. After the game, there was a HUGE party. Sometime during the party, Dan went outside to get some fresh air. As he looked around, he saw one of his teammates on the top of a car, totally drunk and out of control. Dan remembers thinking, “if someone doesn’t do something, he could get seriously hurt.” But instead of doing something, Dan will tell you, “I turned and walked back into the party.” A little while later, the player from the car came inside and began talking to Dan, only Dan couldn’t understand him. He thought it was because the player was so drunk, but then he saw the blood. A little trickle out of the corner of one eye. Dan asked someone who had been outside what had happened. They told him that the player had fell off the roof of the car, and directly onto the antenna of the car. The antenna went through the player’s eye, piercing the brain. Today Dan will tell you that while this player looks rather normal on the outside, inside he has the mental capacity of a 5-year old. Then Dan will say these haunting words, “I had a chance to make a difference in someone’s life and instead I walked back into the party.” These are the words of someone who missed a chance to practice the rhythm of compassion. ADVANCE SLIDE So where do we start? The Good Samaritan Rewritten. Have people get into their church groups and have them rewrite the parable found in Luke 10:25-37. Give each group one of the following settings for their story: western, 50’s, 70’s, The little mermaid, The lion king, Tarzan, or any Disney movie, etc. After 10 minutes have the groups that want, read their new revised versions.
NOTE to Trainer: In reviewing the rewritten stories, make certain the participants choose the right character to play the part of the Good Samaritan. i.e. If they rewrote “The Lion King,” Symba would not be the character who played the Good Samaritan, but Scar would be.
This exercise illustrates our need to continue to rewrite this parable in our everyday lives. So who are the people in need along the roadside of our lives, and what do they need? They don’t need our pity they need our mercy. It’s social action that’s others-oriented. It involves sacrifice, servant-hood, selflessness and sometimes suffering. We’ve simply got to open our eyes and look around. It’s like this lady who wrote to Mother Teresa. A woman in her 50’s found herself alone after her children had grown up and moved away and her husband had left her. In her despair, she cried out for some meaning and hope in life. Through that process she thought of Mother Teresa. She thought her life could
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have meaning if only she had the opportunity to serve others with Mother Teresa. So she sat down and wrote a letter about her struggles in life and her desire to make a difference in the lives of people who had even less than she. She then sent the letter to Mother Teresa asking to join her ministry to the poorest of the poor in Calcutta. Weeks went by and she heard nothing. Finally, a letter came with her name scrawled on the front. It was from Calcutta, and Mother Teresa. With trembling hands she opened the letter, hoping that Mother Teresa would ask her to join. Instead, what she found was the note: Find your own Calcutta….signed Mother Teresa. Sometimes we think we have to travel across the world to be compassionate, when God has placed people in need all around us. They are everywhere, in our cities, in our schools, in our youth groups, and in our homes! Now, how will compassion become a rhythm in our youth ministry? Where are the needs in your town for compassion. Is it with the homeless? The elderly, the inner city? For broken families, single mothers? Kids whose parent(s) are in prison? Where are the needs? Overseas missions are important, but the needs across town are just as important. We’ve got to see the need in our own back yards and physically help people get back on their feet again. In Victor Hugo’s novel, Les Miserables, Jean Valjean, a heartless convict who is living on the streets is taken in by a generous old priest. This is what happened…
VIDEO CLIP: Les Miserables – “I’ve bought your soul back for God.” The Liberated became the Liberator.
As a result of the single act of mercy, Jean Valjean’s life is completely transformed. The question is, who are you in this clip? Are you the weeping nun, too stunned and mortified by sin to see the possibilities compassion offers? Are you Jean Valjean, unwilling to accept God’s mercy and surprised when you receive it? Are you the soldiers, automatically assuming the worst in people based on past stereotypes? Or, are you the priest who extends mercy, even at the risk of physical and financial danger?
When we understand that compassion is a dirty, messy thing it will start becoming a rhythm in our youth ministries. When we understand that it compassion costs and that sometimes we get wounded in the process, it will become a rhythm.
Then and only then will we be able to understand this quote from Tony Campolo: “Compassion is when your heart is broken by the things that break the heart of Jesus.”
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NOTE to Trainer: Work through all the following discussion questions and recommended resources.
What words or phrases capture the concept? suffering with messy getting involved “Find your own Calcutta” who’s my neighbor boldness Conceptually, how will this trait or habit be fostered? Identify those people you much reach What are the practical ways and methods by which this concept will become reality? Think of those in your youth group who need an advocate?
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The following list of things needs to be included in the promotional/ registration materials so that each church group brings these items: Youth Calendar from previous 3 months Calculator Budget Bible Pencil and eraser All-church calendar (with children’s, women’s, men’s events, etc.)
ADVANCE SLIDE – Begin Rhythms Title Slide
Welcome back from lunch. Anybody need a Tums? Remember that last night we staked our place in God’s Story. This morning we learned what it means to be the people of God in that Story. This afternoon I want to give you an owner’s guide for creating, and developing a worship-centered community that will make a difference in your world. History tells us that most of the great spiritual awakenings and revivals have begun with young people. There is something about teenage and young adult enthusiasm that uniquely equips them for leading in the renewal of their own local communities of faith. Your enthusiasm is a necessary ingredient in initiating renewal in your local community of faith. But enthusiasm without practical application is like trying to build a house without a saw, to build a doghouse without a hammer, to bake a cake without a pan, or to surf the net without a modem. Your intentions may be great but it just won’t happen without the tools. Before we open our ministry toolbox, though, let’s take a moment to evaluate some of the work that is already going on. What you’re doing in your youth program is kind of like buying a used house. You didn’t start the project. You’re picking up where others left off.
We find ourselves in a similar position—the foundation is laid, the walls are standing, the roof is on, but now we need to evaluate what kind of condition our home—our youth ministry—is in. Hopefully your youth ministry is in better condition that the home we just saw. I’m not in the position to evaluate your youth ministry, though, so the first thing you need to do is to take some time to evaluate where you are.
EVALUATION Page 43 of 53
Before you get down to work let’s pray together first. (Pray for the groups before they get to work on the next steps. Include an acknowledgment of the need to make some changes and our willingness to do this. Pray for open eyes and honesty with ourselves to allow the Lord to speak clearly to us.) What happens the morning after the big game? Evaluation involves going back and looking at what took place yesterday. In your notebook there is a quote that further drives this point home: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” (George Santayana – 1863-1952, Harvard professor of philosophy) I want you to perform a 2-step evaluation of your youth program to see how you are doing at creating a worship-centered youth ministry.
ADVANCE SLIDE The first step is to list the events and involvement of your youth program under the
appropriate heading in your workbook. If you brought a copy of your youth calendar then just take the events off of this calendar. If you did not, then recreate your calendar from memory. Refer back to this morning’s sessions to refresh your memory of what these six rhythms mean. You will have about 15 minutes to do this. Use the chart in your workbook on page 13 to help you with this. Now, it’s important for you to know that the even though the words in each box may not be exactly the same as those of our Six Rhythms we talked about this morning, the meanings are the same. I think you’ll be able to understand what Rhythm each box corresponds with.
The second step will be an honest evaluation of your current calendar by asking a couple of critical questions. The first question is, how well balanced is your youth ministry? Let me say it again. You are far more qualified to evaluate the balance within your own ministry than I am. I don’t know your church or your teens or your community as well as you do. However, a balanced youth ministry should operate much like an automobile engine where each one of these six rhythms represents one of the engine’s pistons. I understand that in a 6-cylinder engine there are 6 pistons that all work together to make the car run. When they work in connection with each other, in a rhythm, the car runs as it should. When they don't, the engine still fuels a car, but the car does run at its best. This is true of how these rhythms of a healthy youth ministry work together. They must all be working together to get the best possible youth ministry. Our youth ministry can certainly run on less than all 6, but it won't run as God's Word indicates it should. The analogy comparing the 6-cylinder engine to our 6 rhythms of ministry is somewhat faulty in this manner. You see, at optimum performance, all 6 cylinders of the car run at top speed. They are equal in the level of energy they put out, etc. The 6 rhythms we've discussed don't run that same way. They are different and run at different intervals, some being more regular than others, some being more intense
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than others, etc. In fact, we would do better to compare these ministry rhythms to a balanced meal. You know what they tell you. You can eat McDonald's every day for dinner, but you are not getting a balanced meal. Neither are you getting a balance meal if you eat equal portions of all the food groups. We are to eat more fruits than meats, and more carbs than fruits. Load your plate with salad and spaghetti. Leave just a little room for the meatballs! You get the picture, don't you? As you discuss the balance of your youth ministry you are not looking to make sure you have the same number of "Sabbath" rhythms as you did "community." However, be careful. Too much "community" and you've got empty, ungrounded disciples. A few questions that will help you to evaluate the balance of your youth ministry are printed in your workbook. These questions will help you make sure that your ministry is a well-balanced meal on which teenage disciples can become healthy Christians. (Print the following questions in the workbook) Which rhythms are strongest? Which rhythms are missing? Why are they missing? Are some rhythms getting too much attention?
The second question is, how have you retold the Story of God in your youth ministry? Last night we talked about each of us fitting into the Story of God. The Story of God did not end with the last words of the book of Revelation. God is still doing the same kinds of things in our world today that he did 2000 years ago. His Word is still being written in our lives today. Our lives are lived on the same timeline as those of Moses, King David, and the apostle Paul. You will find the following questions printed in your workbook: What great stories of obedience, failure, and faith, found in the Old and New Testament, have you studied in the past few months? How have you helped your young people to identify with the characters of the Bible? What are you doing to help your youth group live out the ongoing work of God in your community?
Now that you have some questions to ask it’s time for you to break into your local youth groups and get to work on their evaluation. If you are the only one here from your church then you will probably want to join with others like yourself or join one of the other church groups so that you will benefit from talking things over with other people. And if you are here with a larger group then we want you to break down into groups no larger than 6. Adults remember this is to be student led. You can help remember the events but you can't help fill in the blanks. You have about 15 minutes to fill in the chart and another 15 minutes to work through some of these questions. (Give the group an update on the time every five minutes. After fifteen minutes instruct them to move from creating the chart to asking some of the evaluation questions printed in the workbook.)
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How are you feeling about your youth ministry as a result of this evaluation? I would like to have a representative from several of the groups share one or two of the insights that you have gained. (Allow 10 minutes for this sharing.) Those are some great insights! And you have just done some of the most important work that you will do all day. Evaluation is sometimes hard work because it often means facing our shortcomings, but if we don’t know where we have been then it’s hard to know where you need to go. Congratulations on doing such a good job with this evaluation process.
THE TOOL BOX
Now let’s move on. The rest of this afternoon is all about identifying some tools for building a worshipcentered youth ministry, obtaining the tools and putting the tools into use. I would love to be able to offer you a SEARS super-power tool that will meet all your needs in building your youth ministry. But I’m sorry. The best that I can do today is to ask a question that will get you started finding your own youth ministry tools. Here it is: What is one tool that you use all the time for building a successful youth ministry? (Have people call out their answers)
Tool #1: Room
What kind of a space do you have to work with? Here are a few thoughts about your youth ministry Room: Teenagers need lots of space for active learning Decorations are important for both a sense of ownership and for setting the right kind of atmosphere Of course, decorating can be a sensitive subject in some churches so you better find out what can be done before doing it Youth rooms ought to be set up for multiple uses such as game playing, learning, and hanging out
Tool #2: How to get it done
Going from an idea on paper to a successful event or program is a big job. Here are some very practical “how to’s” for making your youth program become a reality: Hold planning meetings – get together as often as necessary to brainstorm and plan. Two heads (or more) are always better than one!
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Get some good resources for fresh ideas. NPH has available several books that have great game, activity and Bible study ideas. You can buy them and take them home with you to give you some ideas. Assign tasks – delegate very clearly to specific teens and adults Follow up – keep after people once they have been given assignments, giving them the help and accountability they need to be successful
Tool #3: Yearly Calendar
Our calendars seem to be getting more and more cluttered with activity. Your youth program doesn’t have a monopoly on people’s time. It’s important for you to get the big calendar picture. Here are some things to consider: Church – What else is happening on the church calendar? Will your activity lend to the success of the family or pull it in too many directions? School – How can you take advantage of school holidays? How can you link your activities to school happenings? Find out when your school district publishes its annual calendar and get a copy as soon as possible. Family – Plan early so families can take your plans into consideration when planning vacations. Be sensitive to classic family together times such as Christmas. District – Don’t forget the NYI activities that the District is planning. Seasonal – Try weaving some of the big days and seasons of the Christian calendar into your programming such as Lent, Pentecost and Advent.
Tool #4: Tell the Story
We are a living continuation of the ever-unfolding Story of God. Bring this important fact to the attention of your teens by weaving it into your calendar and program planning. Here are some ideas: Where will you live in Scripture? Pick a book of the Bible and stick with it for a while in your teaching. How will you connect students with the Story of God? Do your program events help teens to experience the things of God? For example, do some things during Advent or during Lent that help students experience being part of the Story.
questions: Is your community rural, suburban, or urban? How often do you expose your teens to other types of communities? Is your town big or small? Each offers unique opportunities for ministry and has different kinds of resources.
To a large degree where you live determines what kind of a youth program you will have. Consider these
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Are there lakes, mountains, rivers, or farms nearby? How can these be used in your planning? What are the nearby recreational facilities like?
Tool #6: Money
Here are things to think about regarding the big “M”—Money! What are the sources of income that can be combined to fund an event? (tithes and offerings, fundraising, student registration fees for activities) Don’t let the lack of any one of these sources limit your ministry. Don’t be afraid to ask for money. God will provide. Work with your church board or finance committee to establish a youth budget if you don’t have one. (Refer to the sample budgets printed in the workbook.)
Notes on healthy mid-sized youth group budget: • • • • Teens expected to help raise part of their own budget Balance between fun activities and servanthood opportunities Facilitates the development of outreach ministry skills such as drama and puppets Provides for the development of a better equipped youth staff
Notes on unhealthy youth group budget: • • Nothing is provided for youth staff development The focus is on fun and community building only with little attention to ministry to others
Budgets for various sizes of youth ministries: Notes on small group budget: • • • • • Emphasis on providing the finances to subsidize fees to encourage participation since there may be fewer people to help cover the costs for kids who can’t afford to go on activities. Staff development is important because trained, enthusiastic leaders draw in more teens Even with a small group a ministry like puppetry can be used to minister in the local church as well as open doors to District or Regional events Quizzing offers the benefits of Bible study as well as an opportunity to get together in a larger arena with kids from across the District. In this way it does double duty. Taking pictures lets kids in a small group look back at the successes and celebrate their identity as a youth group Notes on large group budget: • • A silent retreat offers an opportunity to experience and explore Sabbath rest Activity subsidies and scholarships may not be as necessary in a large congregation where more people often means more earmarked contributions for camp scholarships, etc.
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• • •
A larger group means the need and the potential for success in smaller retreats such as the incoming 7th grader retreat More teens means the ability to develop a teen praise band and a hospitality ministry to reach out to newcomers in the youth group A big youth group can sometimes give parents the impression that their help isn’t needed or that they don’t have a role in ministry to their kids. Help them not only stay involved but provide equipping for them in their role as the primary spiritual mentors of their children.
Tool #7: Support Network
That brings us to the seventh tool. This is perhaps the most important one of all. When I say, “three” you shout out the name of a person that supports your youth ministry. One. Two. Three. (Names are shouted out) Your youth ministry Support network is vitally important! When you go back home what types of people are you going to need on your support networK? (Allow people to respond the types of people that you will need for a healthy youth ministry. Make sure that the following are included: Youth staff, Pastor, Parents, Senior adults) And what specific things do these people to help us? (Allow for people to share ideas. Suggest some of the following if they are not mentioned: Tithe, Teach, drive a bus, bake cookies, chaperon parties, share building skills on mission trips, make phone calls, teach Sunday school classes, pray) Here are some things to think about in relation to your support network: Recruiting is a never-ending job. How are you going to find good support people? Teens, this isn’t just the responsibility of the adults. You hold a stake in this part as well. How do you solicit the support of your senior pastor? Ask him to join you for lunch and cast the vision for him. Ask him, “How can we support your ministry?” Keep him informed. Invite him to be at your youth events. How do you get people to pray for your youth ministry? How do you get parents to volunteer their time for youth ministry?
MAKE A CALENDAR
Now that you have these seven tools in your youth ministry toolbox let’s get to work! I would like you to work together in your groups for the next X minutes to create a balanced, worship-centered, youth ministry calendar. A calendar blank has been provided for you in the workbook. You might want to use this as a template for your future youth ministry planning once they go back home. You may want to refer back to some of the suggested activities from this morning’s session and consider adding some of these to your calendar. Now, I know that most of you already have programs and activities planned for the coming months. I’m not suggesting that you throw everything out and start over from scratch. What you probably want to do is make just a few important changes or additions to incorporate the things we have talked about today. And remember, more is not always better! Make sure you include something from
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each of the Rhythms but don’t plan so much that everyone in your church will be exhausted by the end of the first month. Lastly, before you put one thing on your calendar, you should pray together and ask God to give you guidance as you plan. (Allow time for prayer and calendar planning in small groups.)
Report back about Calendar
(Gather everyone together) I hope that you have had a good time planning together. Are you still friends? Are you excited about your youth ministry? Let’s see how you did. (Ask the following questions, allowing several people to share on each question. Print these questions in the workbook.) What have you planned to develop Community in your youth group? What have you planned to get your youth group involved in Compassion? What have you planned in the area of Discipleship to retell and reconnect your teens with the Story of God? What have you planned to promote Witness by your youth group? What have you planned to help your youth group observe Sabbath rest? What have you planned to help your youth group Celebrate God?
We’ve covered a lot of ground this weekend, haven’t we? You have all worked together beautifully to take a closer look at your youth ministries and work to make them more worship-centered. This is only the beginning, though. There is a lot of hard work ahead. But let’s not be overwhelmed. We are relying on God, with all of his awesome power, and on the incredible resources of the Body of Christ, to make this happen. Remember this about the task ahead: It begins with the Story of God and how an encounter with the God of that Story changes you. Finally, in order to become a worship-centered youth ministry, changing the youth calendar isn’t enough. People’s hearts and lives must be changed. This is a spiritual process—a journey for which you are solely dependent upon God. So I want you to remember that by allowing ourselves to be changed first, then our youth ministry will be changed, and then our whole church will be changed to become a more worship-centered church.
ADVANCE SLIDE When writing to the church at Colosse, the apostle Paul prayed for them (Colossians 1:9-14). I think this prayer would be a wonderful way of concluding our time together. The prayer goes like this: For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power accord-
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ing to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you[a] to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption,[b] the forgiveness of sins As we conclude today, I'd like you to get in your church groups. Our worship leader will lead us in worship. As a youth ministry, you may sing with him/her (Got to be gender inclusive, you know.), kneel or sit together to pray, pray aloud, silently, for each other, for the folks you have waiting to hear the gospel at home, etc. Your DP and I will come to each of the groups and pray this anointing prayer over you. These are holy moments. Let's use them to commit our lives to God and to invite to bless our kingdom building efforts, etc., etc.
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YOUTH MINISTRY ACTIVITY PLANNING WORKSHEET
Activity name:_______________________________________________Age group:_________________ Date(s):_______________________Begin time:_____________________End time:___________________ Location:_____________________________________________________________________________ Activity goals (check all that apply): ο Group-building ο Evangelism ο Service to others ο Spiritual development ο Fundraising ο Family-building Point person: _______________________________ NYI budget money available: ________________
Other leaders/planners: _________________________________________________________________ Other details:_____________________________________ ____________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________________
Detail: (all of the following may not be necessary) • • • • • • • • • • • • Determine cost/Set budget Ask, “Will the details of this event help meet our goal(s)?” Transportation (Use only adults over age 21 (25 for church van).) Information/Permission slips (for distant, prolonged, or potentially dangerous activities) • • • Medical forms (if traveling farther than 40 miles away) Notify NYI president and Associate pastor of details Promote! Promote! Promote! (Use at least 3 forms and begin a minimum of 1 month in advance.) • Evaluation Plan details (complete as necessary): Due by: By whom:
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