Race, Grace, and Place (A Personal Youth Ministry Story)

We sat quietly looking at our Sr. pastor, sitting across from us in our living room.    On the coffee table sat a stack of brand new Bibles and a neat stack of papers with a shortlist written on them.   It was late and he had just arrived at the church’s home that we were living […]

Free Mario Brothers-Themed Lesson: “Level Up”

Here is a quick FREEBIE lesson called “Level Up” just in time for Tomorrow’s Hilarious Holiday, National Mario Day! It is a lesson I taught last week at a local Christian school chapel.  The lesson is based on Romans 15:13 and the theme of “Hope”.  It is a quick exposition of the passage based on […]

Game of the Week: “Mascot Madness” (Food Edition)

Do you know Captian Crunch’s REAL Name?  What about the Lucky Charms guy? In this version of Mascot Madness, take a walk down the grocery aisle and get to know who is really looking at you from the off the shelf! A 10 Question Trivia Game, with 1 Bonus Tiebreaker! Includes: – 2 Powerpoint Presentations […]

Ten Quick Real-Life, In-the-Trenches Youth Ministry Hints

10. Never Buy More than a Couple Extra T-shirts Than You Have Kids and Leaders. (the leftovers will haunt you for years) 9. Never Pre-Buy Tickets for Events, Before You Know Who is Going. (you will lose money every time, pre-sign up & pre-pay always) 8.  Always Bring a Fully Stocked First Aid Kit with You. […]

Top 10: “Discipleship Is and Is Not….”

10. Discipleship IS Small Groups. It is NOT Cliques. 9. Discipleship IS faith involvement. It is NOT faith information. 8. Discipleship IS a guide on the side. It is NOT a sage on the stage. 7. Discipleship IS an invitation to come and see. It is NOT an invitation to look at me. 6. Discipleship […]

Youth Ministry Game of the Week: “Oh Captain, My Captain!”

Oh, Captain, My Captain is a quick silly trivia game to test how well you know your “captains”?   Is it Captain Hook or Captain Crunch?   Can your students tell the differences and do they know the names of these famous American Pop Culture Captains? Come on Captain Obvious, aren’t these all obvious??  Maybe […]

Top 10: Youth Ministry “Sacred Cows”?

10. We still feed kids junk food, even though we know it’s bad for them—Our body is the “Temple of the Holy Spirit,” except at youth events. 9. The churches that worry more about the Jones memorial carpet, couch, or…. The youth room pipe organ, than students.- The one thing that Grandma Jones left behind […]

Top 10: Things We “Settle For” in Youth Ministry?

10. Mid-90’s 15-Passenger Van as Your Ministry Transportation. 9. $5 Little Caesar’s Pizzas as the Meal for Every Event. 8. The Smallest Staff Office (*cough: closet) 7. Only Being Allowed to Speak on Holiday Weekends? 6. Outdated, Garage Sale Couches as Youth Room Furniture. 5. Hand-Me-Down Sound Equipment and Tech from Adult Ministry. 4. Sleeping […]

The Twelve Disciples in YOUR Youth Group?

12. Philip, The student that is excited to invite others to the youth group. 11. Simon, The Zealot. The student that is always trying to debate politics and issues. 10. James, the Other One. The one student that is faithfully there every week but doesn’t say a whole lot. They are there but no one […]

News U Can Use: “Gen Z Teens Talks COVID, Politics and the Capital Attack”

“Their parents’ generation experienced the fall of the Berlin Wall, the brutal beating of Rodney King by police, Operation Desert Storm, war in Bosnia and the 9/11 attacks. But today’s teens are experiencing a lifetime of disturbing news compressed into the span of just nine months and counting. They’ve been hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, […]