Tuesday, August 30, 2011

New Design

Here with the youth group at Grace, we have been throwing around the idea of changing our name and logo. Rebranding ourselves would be the best way to describe it. Well, yesterday I had the chance to sit down with someone skilled at this and we created a new logo and design. I am super excited to show it to the kids and give them a chance to get pumped about it. Check back tomorrow and see what the next generation of JOLT will look like!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Job and the Ark

On Wednesday night we have completed our study of the book of Job. Now I have a problem with calling Job, Noah. I realize they are different people and I know the difference, but I continue to make that verbal goof. Job is a fascinating study and there are some powerful lessons in there for all of us. The main lesson that I wanted my students to hear is that God is always in control. Not only is He always in control, He has ALWAYS been in control. As we read the line of questioning that God gives to Job towards the end of the book, that point is made exceedingly clear. God created everything from the earth and the heavens to the donkey and the dinosaurs.
If we really believe that God is the creator of all, then that should help us to better believe that He is completely in control of all that happens. I expressed to the students, that as a teenager it is sometimes difficult to understand this and live your life with this knowledge. Many things happen that cause us to question God and wonder why certain things happen to us and those around us.
All I can say is the sooner we can all come to grips that God is in control and His plans for us are for our best, then we can serve God better and share our faith more confidently.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Youth Services

This past weekend our JOLT group had the opportunity to lead our two Sunday morning services. I was able to step aside and let the students share about our summer experiences. The first part of the summer was spent working with a summer outreach at the Pekin Housing Authority. Our students planned all aspects of this from the Bible lessons, to the snacks and games and crafts. It was truly a blessing to see them put this together for students 1st - 6th grade. We also offered a sports camp for the older students in the area and they also had Bible lessons and a time of prayer each day.
These students continue to amaze and bless me on a daily basis. On this Sunday of sharing, many of the students shared about their personal experiences and exactly what God has taught them this past summer. One thing that is critical for us all to remember is that God can and will teach us in whatever situation we find ourselves in. These students are incredible reminders of that for me!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Sore, but good

There are definitely times I start to feel my age, today is one of those days. I was blessed and able to spen Thursday and Friday moving one of my girls stuff to college. (A student here at church who I treat like my own)  God has been so good to my family as we work to figure out all this ministry that we have been called to do. But, living alongside kids and serving them is such a joy and brings christ to life for me. He served and loved and I want to show that to these kids and to my own kids as well.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Another College Weekend

This past weekend I had the great fortune to spend some time at Belmont University. One of the most special students we have asked me to go down there with her and her mom to check out the school. Belmont is a Christian University, however they are not what I would call a Bible College. Chapel is not required and as I told our tour guide, I do not like mixed dorms. I still do not get why colleges put guys and girls in the same dorm, albeit many times on different floors. Security is easier and the ability to track students and help keep them safe is more efficiently done with separate dorms. Enough of my complaints there.
The point is, I am so blessed to continue to be a part of the lives of such wonderful young people. Our college kids are so special to me and seeing them make these tough decisions is exciting and stressful. It is hard to not just tell them what to do, and hard to not overstep my bounds in sharing my opinions. Some of these young ladies are like my own daughters and seeing them grow up to serve our Lord and wanting to do His Will is such an incredible thing.
So be in prayer for college students, they need you!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Day at IWU

Yesterday I had a wonderful opportunity to spend the day with my family. Not only did we spend the day together we spent it with two other very special young ladies. We went to IWU, had lunch and spent the afternoon playing cards. After days like these, I am always in awe that God has allowed me to be blessed with so many wonderful people in my life.
Spending the day with students and just enjoying their life alongside them is a dream for me. I do enjoy studying, reading, working out and other stuff, but hanging out with students, especially with my family, is one great way to spend the day. I pray daily that God will continue to allow me play a part in so many students' lives and to be able to serve them in any way that God sees fit.

Monday, February 21, 2011

The Hole in our Gospel

The college Bible study that I have the wonderful blessing to lead on Sunday nights has been studying the book "The Hole in our Gospel" by Richard Stearns. He is the President of World Vision, and has written a very powerful book about our role as Christians in the world of today. Last night at Bible study we talked very specifically about what the church should be doing to meet the needs of the poor and oppressed. Unfortunately we decided that perhaps the church isn't doing enough. There seem to be plenty of programs for congregations to attend, but what are we doing to help the poor around the world.
Which brought us to an exciting opportunity to help with the United Methodists Church's campaign to end malaria's death toll on the people of Africa. There is a local rally next week in Morton, and our students will be there to learn about the campaign. Then we will work to intertwine the Gospel of Jesus Christ along with it, so we can hopefully save lives both here on earth and for eternity.