Try the following next time you are getting ready to teach.
It takes great communicators several weeks to prepare an effective message. Those who regularly stand in front of crowds with something to say have been thinking about, meditating on, studying, and examining their content for days. It is part of them and it flows like something they know, they believe, and are passionate about.
Don’t wing it.
You may get by with it a few times, but if you really think you can deliver a diet of half-baked talks that you really don’t know or maybe even don’t believe, then . . . well . . . I think you are most likely mistaken. One could even argue that people who wing it :: trust in themselves, don’t truly value their position, and aren’t honoring the audience. This is harsh, but it is borderline disrespect to stand in front of them and make it up as you go. You can do so much better than that.
Get help as you prepare your next talk. Teams make things great. Inventions with impact are created by groups of people. Ideas that move a generation rarely flow out of individuals. The same is true for a great talk. Get together with a few people you have chemistry with and build the talk together. Get input, do research, brainstorm, create, craft, and form the message. It’s fun. You’ll grow. The group will feel empowered. Your audience will love it.
Hope this helps … sb
As this day begins …
… let us remember that the world we are living in is a spiritual place. We are living in the middle of forces of good and evil. We must put on the armor of God … Eph 6
… Our God has already won the war and a river of life is on the way … Eden will be restored and all sorrow will be wiped off and out of our lives! Let us rejoice and be glad! Our Lord reigns! Rev 22
… God has an enemy named satan and he is running all over the planet with one goal in his eyes … death. “The thief comes to kill!” That enemy has a plan for you and me. Jn 10:10
… God will finish the work He has started and He knows all things … Phil 1 and Psalm 139
… Jesus is coming back soon just as He promised! Rev 22:7
I’ll be praying today and eagerly waiting to see what this day brings us all … may we share the love of Jesus with everyone we meet. Our time here on earth is short!
When I was in Seminary I would spend Tuesday nights walking through the streets of downtown Fort Worth, Texas sharing my faith with almost anyone I ran into. The stories were crazy and the people we met were almost always open to the Gospel and the things we had to say. I don’t remember being laughed at, spit on or made fun of for doing it either. Most of the time I found an openness to the love of Jesus. People were willing to listen and encouraged by the awesome news about Jesus!
Today … I don’t make a habit of going somewhere every Tuesday night, but I do share my faith as I feel the Lord leading me to do so. I teach students regularly about Jesus and I pray for God to open doors for me to share His love with the people I run into. Just like the days back in school, the people I meet are open and willing to listen and are usually encouraged by what Holy Spirit leads me to share.
My approach these days is to simply tell the person God leads across my path that I’m someone who prays and to ask them if there is anything they would like me to pray about for them. Most all of the time the person gets really excited and eagerly shares a prayer request or two with me before I leave — I have only had one person simply say no — After praying, I try and trace back my steps so I can run into them again and ask God to open the door for the discussion to go deeper.
BTW Some of my favorite moments have been with workers at Subway and 7 Eleven. 🙂
But is this enough? Has evangelism turned into a laid back approach of prayer and living a public Christian life in hope that someone will ask me why I’m different? Should I be actively looking for opportunities to share my faith with the people I meet? Is God asking me to do more and be more aggressive? Are all Christians called to evangelize?
I’m convicted about this subject. Frankly, I have let selfishness, a busy life and spiritual apathy have way too much control over me. I have not made this a priority and that bothers me. Praying for these people is awesome, but I need to push through and tell them the great news about Jesus!
This is the call from God to all Christians — the Bible teaches that we are all given the responsibility to tell people about Jesus!
Matthew 28: 16-20
Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
I love Jesus and the world needs Him more than ever! He changed my life, gave me a reason to live and I want the world to know who He is … I’m praying specifically for the Lord to open a door for me to share my faith today!
Am I really supposed to share my faith? Of course I am!
Let’s share our faith with someone soon! The living water of Jesus is ready for someone you and I know today.
I found three other articles about this subject that I think you’ll enjoy! See the linkable titles below!
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I have a place of refuge in God, and He is faithful to listen and answer me. I have learned that His Spirit also has a place to reside within me. This is fascinating, and I want to honor Him as He makes my body a temple. This isn’t a weird temple, but a place for God to make His presence full! If I welcome the Spirit to be alive in my life, then I allow God to work and move in wonderful ways. If I don’t treat my body as a temple, then I can easily forget that God is powerful enough to use me. I want to honor my body as a temple, so that I may also listen and answer Him!
You belong in me, and I belong in you. I have made you a beautiful place of rest for my glory to shine through. I shine light from your soul, and I radiate from your smile. Remember that when my children look at you, they see a reflection of me. I am not a temporary resident in you, but I have made you a home for my Spirit to dwell in. I ask that you welcome Him with gratitude, and be most attentive to what He may be telling you. While my Spirit dwells in you, you are being glorified with me as my precious temple.
1 Corinthians 3:16 ESV: “Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.”
1 Corinthians 6:19 ESV: “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”
Reflect on the purpose of a temple.
Do you allow the Holy Spirit to dwell in you as a temple?
How can you honor your body?
Will you trust that God is with you?
Who are you in Jesus? His temple
Set Free from Sin
In the past, I didn’t care when I would sin. I knew what I wanted, and I did it, even if I knew it was wrong. Things changed once I actually understood what Jesus went through for me. He felt the weight of all my sins. He carried all my guilt and all my shame upon His perfectly innocent shoulders. It isn’t fair when I think that, especially when I consider that it wasn’t just my sin, but the sin of every person on Earth.
When I have my mind set on Jesus, then I remember that I don’t want to walk in my sins. I want to walk with Jesus, and I have been changed by His love. I am free from walking in the pattern of my sins, and I am free to walk a peaceful life in His Spirit.
I experience such joy when I see you discard your old ways, and choose to walk with me instead. I created you so that you may walk according to my Spirit. You are no longer bonded to sin, but you are set free from sin! Please walk in the freedom I bought for you, and remember that it was no small price. I called you to walk in a manner worthy of the gospel, and that means I expect for you to confess, repent, forgive one another, and seek me in all things!
2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV: “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
Romans 8: 5-6 ESV: “For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.”
Romans 8:10-11 ESV: “But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.”
Colossians 3:13 ESV: “…bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.”
Reflect on the price of your freedom.
When was the last time you confessed and repented of your sin?
How is accountability connected to freedom?
Can your forgive others as God forgives you?
We launched a little website last week designed to help students after they get home from Youth Camp. Our goal was simple, provide a tool students can use to get to know Jesus after they finish camp.
The site has been live for 7 days and we’ve had 229 users and the average user spends a little over 3 minutes on the site! We even had our first international user today! Someone in Romania!
I’m posting about it here so that those of you who pray will add it to your prayer list … I’m also hoping to see it spread and that some of you will share the website with your friends.
The site is free and available to anyone. Our current topic is Identity in Christ! … We’re working hard to help people know who they are in Jesus … Chosen, Loved, Accepted, Child of God and many other labels. There will eventually be 21 devotionals on the site!
Praise the Lord for letting us be a part of something that points people to Jesus and can spread to the whole world! Glory to God!!!!!!
If you want to help pass it along to others or use it for yourself the web address is www.aftermycamp.com.
I haven’t been this excited about something like this in a long time! Thanks for reading about it!
Child of God
I have a Father who loves me more than anyone ever has. He loved me from the beginning, and he has adopted me in my previously wayward state. A loving Father is not ashamed of my mistakes, but graciously forgiving. He loves watching me learn and grow, because it is evidence that He is teaching me. I can’t be more thankful that He watches me closely, and He takes such good care of me. He instructs me with His word, and He listens to me in my prayers. He allows me to know His other children, too! I have the blessing of living life with other sons and daughters of God. I hope I always try to love them with the same love He shows to me.
My child, I delight in you! I have been waiting for you to understand that I have adopted you as my child. You are mine because I love you, and my love is unconditional. The circumstance, situation, and outcome will never change my love. Life is going to challenge you, but don’t forget who your Father is. My child, I created this world, and there is nothing greater or stronger than your Father. I am your refuge, and you can come to me for safety. I adopted you because you had faith in me; please trust that I will work everything in your favor.
Ephesians 1:3-6 ESV: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.”
Galatians 3:25-26 ESV: “But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith.”
1 John 3:10 ESV: “By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.”
Reflect on the unconditional love of a Father.
Do you trust that your Father is for your good?
How can you remember that your situation does not change the Father’s love?
I know what’s its like to take students to camp … to see them get all excited about Jesus and then to come home and within just a few days fall back into their old ways. This always bothers me as a youth pastor and as a leader. So this year I decided to do something about it.
Here’s what I did … with the help of an amazing writer, I put together a website called www.aftermycamp.com. its free and its loaded with tools that will help your students keep growing. The theme for this first edition is Identity in Christ.
So far, people are loving it and its working. Every day there are students dropping in and using it as a devotional, watching videos, worshiping … its been so much fun to watch God use this awesome tool!
Please check it out and pass it along to your friends http://www.aftermycamp.com … we love to help!
Our friends at Crowd Control games are always doing something really cool and often pretty crazy! Today they’re giving away a free game! GET this FREE GAME and use it tonight! CLICK HERE AND ENJOY!
This freebie brought to you by ymnow.com because we think the Sitton Brothers are awesome … and we really love youth pastors … and teenagers … and we want you to like us!
1. Limit your to-do list
2. Measure your results, not your time
3. Build “getting ready to work” routines
4. Track what you’re wasting time on
5. Build habits to help you stop working
We found these 5 steps to be incredibly helpful to those of us in student ministry!
Thank you Belle Beth Cooper for your great resource!
This link proudly brought to you by your friends at ymnow.com
We found this today on Facebook … a post a lot of people are sharing by Maia McCann.
Some kids grow up in poverty, lacking food and sanitation, while others are born in countries where basic necessities are taken for granted. Photographer James Mollison came up with the project when he thought about his own childhood bedroom and how it reflected who he was. Where Children Sleep – a collection of stories about children from around the world told through portraits of their bedrooms – stemmed from his ideas.
This link proudly brought to you by your friends at ymnow.com
Too many times we get stuck. We end up standing still when God is calling us to walk. To walk after Him. To let Him take us down roads that we never even dreamed were possibilities. To go places and do things that will truly shake walls and shift foundations. … I believe He wants us to walk hard after Him … to walk in faith after Him.
I’ve been listening to this song for weeks now … I believe the words are anointed by God and that they encompass the call He is issuing for us to walk. To walk by faith and not by sight.
The cry of my heart is for those of us who love God and love teenagers to step out on faith and be obedient to follow Him into the waters of faith. He’s waiting. He’s already there. His arms are strong. He will never let us go.
How cool is this … you need shirts, these guys want to change the world … you can do both!
Take some time and check out Fund The Nations!
People who cohabitate have more affairs
50% higher rate of divorce
More physically abusive than others
if you get married without living together you have a more fulfilled marriage
“Just doing what seems to right to man causes everything you want in life to go down.” Todd Wagner
“ No habit has any real hold on you other than the hold you have on it. ”
“You can’t climb the ladder of success dressed in the costume of failure.”
“The job is what you do when you are told what to do. The job is showing up at the factory, following instructions, meeting spec, and being managed.
Someone can always do your job a little better or faster or cheaper than you can.
The job might be difficult, it might require skill, but it’s a job.
Your art is what you do when no one can tell you exactly how to do it. Your art is the act of taking personal responsibility, challenging the status quo, and changing people.
I call the process of doing your art ‘the work.’ It’s possible to have a job and do the work, too. In fact, that’s how you become a linchpin.
The job is not the work.”