Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Know Your Rites

Over the years, our society has developed many different rites of passage. From circumcision, to baptism, to a bar mitzvahs, getting your driver's license, sweet 16, college, weddings, first child, first real job and retirement are passages that we go through as people that define where we have been and where we are going. Within the church we have some rites also, some especially within the Methodist church. Children are born into the church with Baptism, 8th graders are given the option to go through confirmation, Salvation, Sanctification and first communion are all rites that help our students/adults find out where they are in their life. These rites are defined to help our children/students understand where they are going.

I Corinthians 13:11 talks about putting child like events and growing up. I believe we give our kids mixed signals when it comes to growing up. As parents, we want our kids to act grown up as soon as possible. We give them the ability to make decisions that affect them for the rest of their life, but not always giving them the tools to make those decisions. Then if they mess up, we treat them like children. I sat in on a seminar that talked about how the age of adolescence in the 1900's was less than 4 years, but today adolescence spans almost 15 years. I know that kids today are growing up too fast. I see kids making decisions that they shouldn't even be thinking about. Sex, drugs and rock-n-roll are pushed into the lives of our students when they are children, rather than as adults. The age of first having sex is getting younger and younger. Jr Highers are getting drunk and high almost before having a first girl/boyfriend.

Some of our society has lost the rites of passage and students aren't sure where they fit within our little boxes. My goal as a youth pastor is to help students become grounded in their OWN faith. Not the faith of their father or mother or family, but a faith where they have questioned and found the answers they are looking for. Our faith is strongest when we know WHY WE BELIEVE.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

When Bad things happen...

Right now we have a bunch of people we know who are pregnant. My best friend, my sister, sister-in-law, friend at work, and other members of the church. Everyone is so excited about it and rightfully so. Having kids is a great and wonderful thing. I wouldn't know what to do without the three I have.

The problem is that two of the people we know (best friend & sister-in-law) have miscarried or lost their babies. Right now, Beth is in Nashville spending time with her sister as she goes through this ordeal. My sister is worried about losing her because of a medical condition she has, but only time will tell. In talking to Beth and seeing her hurt by her sisters loss, I couldn't help but wonder why. For me it seems like this type of thing is happening more and more, or maybe our world is just more connected so you hear about it more.

Why do bad things happen to good people? Sometimes we like to put God in the middle because we believe He controls everything in our lives. Does God cause women to loss their kids? Does He know something we don't and thus spares the child from something in this life or maybe the parents? I know people who shouldn't have kids, who can't stop getting pregnant and I know people who can't get pregnant to save their lives, who would be the best parents in the world. I don't believe that God cause miscarriages. I believe that God has set this world in motion and intervenes when He needs to. People who aren't Christians tend to think we chicken out by bringing God into the story. By saying things like, "it must be His will", "He knows what is the best", "He is testing our faith" or any of the number of cliche sayings we use to make ourselves better.

I don't know why bad things happen to good people. I do know that God is in control of our life and that sometimes things happen that we don't want or expect, but that doesn't make him anything less. Our life is full of problems, hurts and great joys. Beth has a friend who's sister is a doctor at a children's hospital. In talking with her one day, I heard her say that she didn't understand how anyone could deal with everything that she sees on a daily basis, without having God. The hope she has helps her to make it through. She knows that God is in control of our world and that we aren't just here by accident. While we may not the things that happen in our life, we must continue to put our faith in God, no matter what happens in our life.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

New Toy

Now that we have moved to the midwest, we have the ability to do more skiing. This year I have two outings planned where I would have had to rent a snowboard. Well, I ended up buying a new snowboard the other day. This will save me a couple hundred dollars a year since we have ski mountain just down the street.

I took one of my students with me to pick out the board. We visited a couple different stores and looked at several different types and sizes. He gave me the information I needed on what size is best, how wide it needed to be and what bindings and boots to buy. I was pretty stoked as we were shopping around. After about 3 hours I ended up buying a Burton Bullet, Burton Custom Bindings and Burton Tribute boots. Burton is supposed to be one of the best board makers out there, so I am stoked about getting this board within my budget. I got it all home (like a little kid) and put it together and played around with it. Then I drug it to church so I could show everyone there.

All in all, I am happy. I can't wait for the snow to fall so I can try it out for real. My kids are also excited because I promised them we would go skiing this winter. They have little cheap snowboards that we got at Target...

Monday, November 26, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 11/25/2007

Attendance: Average
Lesson Topic: Living God Loud: Soul Purpose: I Sam 16 & 17
Fun Factor: Above Average
Volunteer Involvement: Average
Music: Below/Above Average
Lesson Quality: Average
Length of Lesson: 25
Student Response: Above Average

We finished out Living God Loud series this Sunday. A series was supposed to be only 6 weeks turned into 10 because of interruptions in my schedule. I think overall the series went OK in what I wanted to accomplish. I am hoping that students know think more about what it means to Live God Loud and to strive to put Christ in their life, rather than just living. I think we are really starting to move in the right direction. I think the ministry has some great teachers for Sunday School and Bible Study and the students like that. I am seeing a shift in the students who are attending, we have several new kids who are now coming consistently and are really enjoying the service.

Our next series will be short (3 weeks) and will revolve around the Characters of Christmas. Focusing on the different players and ending with a special off-site trip...

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Reign Over Me: Movie Review

Reign Over Me was a great movie. I was hesitant to see this movie. I like both actors (not always Sandler) and it looked like something I might watch. Once I found out that it had a R rating, I decided against watching it in the movies. I am sorry I waited to watch it. This was a great movie. I was very impressed with the acting from both Adam and Don. This was probably the first serious character that Adam played that I have seen.

The premise of the movie (Watch out for spoilers) is that Alan Johnson (Don Cheadle) is a dentist with a great life, possibly too good. His marriage has become mundane and predictable. His wife Janeane (Jada Pinkett Smith) and him have lost some of the spark that happened in the early part of their marriage. Enter Charlie Fineman (Adam Sandler). Charlie enters the movie in what seems to be a crazy person on a scooter. As the story unfolds we learn that Charlie's wife and kids were lost in one of the planes of 9/11. Alan rekindles the friendship he had with Charlie while they were both in dental school and slowly unravels the mystery that is Charlie Fineman. Alan begins to spend a bunch of time with Charlie and does his best to befriend him and help him whenever he can. You can tell that Charlie is suffering from nothing more than a broken heart, and the movie ends with some breakthroughs in Charlie's life. There were other characters that appeared in this movie:
Liv Tyler, Donald Sutherland and Saffron Burrows

Like I said, I loved this movie. Not only was it an original, it had a great story to go with it. The writer/director Mike Binder did a great job in creating a story with interesting characters that worked well together. I was intrigued throughout the entire movie and moved by the love in Charlie's heart after the loss of his family. The only problem I might have with this movie is the language. I don't think it was way out there, but it was there. Most of it is what you would hear in a non-secular conversation in New York.

I would recommend this to any adult to see it. I would be cautious of recommending it to a teenager just because of the language. I think this movie had some great points when it comes to communication and how we deal with problems. Alan has marriage problems because he isn't able to talk to his wife. He doesn't know how to display his feelings with his wife and his business partners. Obviously, Charlie has problems communicating his feelings of the loss of his wife and kids. I watched this movie having no idea how I would respond if that was me. I could completely see what happened to him and I would be the same way. Another great point of the movie is having someone to talk to. Charlie really befriends Alan because he didn't know his family. Alan was someone who wouldn't ask him questions that would remind him of his family. But as much as Charlie needs Alan, Alan needed Charlie. Alan needed to have someone to talk to and help him see what he was missing.

I am pretty sure I will use some clips from this movie in future lessons. I could think of a couple topics that would work...

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thanksgiving...

Happy Turkey Day to everyone... Just wanted to shout out to everyone out there.

I am thankful for everything that God has given us. This is our first Turkey Day in KC and we had a great time at our Pastors house. So much has changed since last year and I am so glad.

What are you thankful for?

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 11/18/2007

Attendance: Average
Lesson Topic: Living God Loud: Can I Get a Witness? I Peter 3:8-16
Fun Factor: Average
Volunteer Involvement: Below Average
Music: Above Average
Lesson Quality: (Jr High) Above Average/ (Sr High) Below Average
Length of Lesson: 25
Student Response: Above Average (Depends)

Tonight was a rather interesting night. Having two services is always interesting because you usually make some adjustments after the first and then the second is better. Tonight it was backward. The Jr High service was good, but the Sr hight was not as good. They seemed very distracted and not wanting to be there, almost bored. We are almost done with our Living God Loud series and talked about Witnessing. Most of the time our witness is the lifestyle we live and how those around us, see who we are. Peter tells us to always be ready to get an answer for why we have hope and that is something our students need to be prepared for. Their friends are looking for something real and something to believe in, but if our lives don't tell our story, then our mouths surely won't.

I will wrap up this series next week and begin some holiday series...

Monday, November 12, 2007

Taking the Day Off

Mondays are normally my day off. The last few I've spent working. What can I say, I love what I do. It is weird not working when everyone else is. Beth works now, so I can't hang out with her. I have figured out that not taking my day off can really have an affect on me. I get bogged down in stuff and seemed to become somewhat depressed or lethargic.

I know that taking a day off is important. I am supposed to be off on Saturdays, but in youth ministry that seems to be the default day to do things, so that is out of the window. God tells us to take the Sabbath off, but I "work" on the Sabbath so I really need to make sure and keep mine on Monday.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 11/11/2007

Attendance: Average
Lesson Topic: No, You Hang Up!
Fun Factor: Average
Volunteer Involvement: Average
Music: Average (Used videos)
Lesson Quality: Average
Length of Lesson: 35
Student Response: Above Average

Finally, I am back. We continued the Live God Loud series in talking about Prayer. One of the easiest and most important part of our Christianity, and most of us rarely do it. Sure we send up quick prayers to God when we need help or when we think about it, but most of us don't have any kind of real prayer life. A prayer life that is consistent and worthy. I struggle through this also. Not always coming to God just to talk but when I am in a hurry and need his help. Jesus gave us an example to pray in Luke 11:1-4, a prayer that all of us learned in Sunday School. There are many reasons that we don't pray. Sometimes we are afraid, don't know what to say, too busy or just don't think it is important. We think our prayers are just words that go into the air, sometimes to come through and sometimes not. We don't fully understand that God who hears those prayers and wants to answer them.
We ended the service by standing in a circle and holding candles. Mine was lite and before I lite another students, I prayed for him. The students were also told that once they had a lighted candle, that they were to pray for another student and then go light their candle. I think most of them took it seriously, some just kind of played around but hopefully they got something out of it. Mostly, they know that at least one person prayed for them today.

Friday, November 09, 2007

The Emerging Church

One of the sessions I sat in at NYWC was about Theology and the Emerging church. Actually it was 2 seminars and a forum. I found it very interesting. I wasn't sure what to expect because I didn't know a lot about the Emerging church or movement, and I still have a lot to learn about it. The seminars I sat in were just one man's perspective and he doesn't seem to be saying the same things as some of the other leaders in that group.

The emerging church seems to be very similar to a house movement, pulling away from the denominations into smaller groups of people. At the very far end, the Emergent church is a small group of people who discuss what the Bible means, how God moves and other theological thoughts. There is no "pastor" or leader. Services are normal except that the discussion happens between everyone there and no one person runs the show. The role of the pastor is no longer, people are allowed to make their own theological discoveries whether good or bad.

Now some of you may not see a problem with that, but I do. I believe that everyone can interpret the Bible how that want, but that doesn't make them right. While sitting in these classes, the words egotistical keep coming to my mind. Like how are we supposed to determine who is right and who is wrong. And I know that sounds weird, but that was almost the impression I got from my classes. So we will see. I am looking more into this movement to see how people take it in. I am part emergent movement in that I believe not everyone learns about God the same way, or prays the same way, but I am not to the point of abandoning denominational churches just yet. I guess I believe on working from within to change...

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Backing up 1 terrabyte

So how do you back up 1 terrabyte of data. On our home machine I have 4 hard drives that give me a little more than 1 terrabyte of data. We have tons of music, movies, applications, pictures, documents and everything else you can think of storing on a pc. Well a couple of weeks ago, we lost it all. We had a hard drive crash (40 gig) that held our Operating System and all the installed programs we had. Somehow in the process of trying to reinstall Windows, I lost all the data on the 40 gig and a 250gig hard drive that held all our applications, documents and pictures.

I initially thought that was all we lost. Luckily (if you can call it luck) we had some backups, about 10 dvds) that held most of it. We did lost a lot but not all. So I went through the process of transferring everything from the DVD's to our hard drive. I still had my other two SATA drives to get up and running. It seems during the move, I lost the driver install cd's for my motherboard. This wasn't a huge issue but I didn't have the drivers for the raid card which controlled the sata connectors. So I kept putting it off till I had time to try to find the disk or the drivers. Tonight I figured I would get it done. I went to the controller website and got the drivers, installed them and tried to get the hard drives to work. Well, they didn't. Windows kept asking me to format them. I was not happy at all.

I was headed to church so I thought I would take the drives there and see if I could get the data off with our new pc's. That didn't work either. It hit me. I lost over 500 gigs of music and movies. All the backup's I had for my dvd's. I also realized I would spend the next 3-6 weeks re-ripping all our music back to the hard drive. I have emailed Apple to see if (by the grace of God) they would let me redownload all the music I have purchased from them. Otherwise I have lost a lot of money...

Live and learn I guess. Next weekend I will spend a bunch of time burning my stuff to new dvds in case this happens again. I am also looking to buy an external hard drive to store our data so we don't have this issue again.

Rules to live by... always backup your data, no matter how much you have. The extra time you spend can save you a lot of time and money...

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Envy by doug fields

I really did learn a lot while at the NYWC Conference. (Since the church paid for it, I am sure they are glad I did) I enjoyed the different main speakers we had. I didn't watch all of them, but Doug Fields was one I wanted to see. Doug has done a lot for Youth Ministry and I was interested to see him in person.

Anyway, his talk was about envy within the Youth Ministry community. One of easiest traps to fall into as a youth pastor is seeing people who have it better than you. They have a bigger church, more kids, bigger budget, laptop, a great and supportive pastor, etc. We tend to look at others and want what they want. Always thinking the grass is greener on the other side. I have worked in various churches. Small, medium and large. My former church didn't have a youth budget at all, we ran it on the donation of a single person. Before that, my church had a smaller budget but seemed sufficient. Right now, I feel that God has put me in the perfect position. I love my church and what I do. I have a great budget and a very supportive pastor/staff. My parents are excited about what we are doing and try to help as much as possible. Hearing all that, you wouldn't think I would be envious of anyone. I have it all and should be doing great, but we have our problems. Bigger doesn't always mean better, sometimes it is just bigger.

I look at other churches that are bigger than us and wish we could do what they do. One church we use as an example of where we can be is Rezlife @ Church of the Resurrection. Their youth pastor, Jason Gant, is a great guy. He runs a good ministry and does a lot to keep it going. Me and my staff look at what they do and use them as examples. I don't think we envy them in a major way, but they do some things we would like to do.

Doug has always been very open about not trying to copy exactly what he does because he is at a larger church, but says to always take it and adapt it to your ministries certain situation. I can understand how youth pastors can envy other ministries. We all do it. In life, work, family and everything else in life. Maybe that is why God added the commandment to not covet...

NYWC Day 2

This day was a little more relaxing than yesterday. I got to sleep in
this morning and take my time getting to the conference. I skipped
the early morning seminar and first session. There wasn't much that
interested me, so I took some time to myself.
One of the session I went to was with Tony Jones and talking about the
Emergent/Emerging Church. Now unless you are in youth ministry you
probablyh hve no idea what that is or why I would be concerned about
it. The funny thing is, there is no hard definition for what it is.
that was something I was hoping to get answered this weekend amd why I
went to the session. Tony was one of the most interesting sessions I
went to because he got beyond programs and into the thinking of how
you define your theology or even what your theology is. I have always
loved learning more of the 'why' we do things than the how. I love
asking the question, 'why are bad words bad?' because most people
don't have a good answer to it beyond saying that someone or society
told them so.
To me that is the Emerging curch. Ask the qustion of why we do things
in the churc and how does that affect or life. I fit into that camp,
maybe not as much as Tony and the rest of the movement but to a point.
I believe in questioning why we do things in worship, why we believe
what we do about God and Jesus, is the Bible real and how do we know
and many other things. Tony seems to think that takes you out of the
denominational group, to a point. 8 am not sure I got it all but that
might be the point.

Will blog more...

--
Roy E. Probus Jr
Youth Pastor @ Platte Woods Church
Cell: 816.522.2946
Blog: http://soulshaper.blogspot.com

Friday, November 02, 2007

What is Discipleship

I started this post during the National Youth Workers Convention and never sat down to finish it. I am not totally sure where I wanted to go or why even write this, but I figured I would finish it.

Discipleship to me is the building of a relationship with Jesus Christ through learning. I know this probably isn't the best definition or even correct, but that is what I think. I have always tried to find the best approach for discipling students, to help them know more than I do. Discipleship is more than a Wednesday Night Bible study or Sunday School or even Worship. Discipleship is what a youth ministry should be. Everything that is done within the youth ministry should be about teaching our students to grow deeper in Christ.

As a youth pastor, my job is to help students know Christ more. To lead them on their journey and with Gods help, give them the tools they need as they leave my ministry and go into the "real world". When I was at Covenant and up until that point, a lot of what I did was trial and error. I would come up with an idea that I thought was great, sometimes they would work and other times they wouldn't. Here at Platte Woods, I am trying to do my best at making the entire program work and flow together. This would include all the events we do, the games we play, the music we listen to and our themes in our lessons. We are getting there slowly.

To be a true Disciple of Christ is more than just lip service. Teaching students to be disciples is even harder. Most students (especially in my group) have been there and done that. Whether they have attending church their whole lives, or have known friends who have or who just don't care, showing them the how/why/where/whats of Discipleship isn't that easy and takes real work. Our ministry is trying to be very calculated in what we are doing to make sure that we balance out everything. We try to make it fun, but you still learn. Exciting but Jesus centered. Creative but still focused.

I believe that we as youth leaders need to remember why we are doing what we are doing. I know too many youth pastors (myself sometimes) who get caught in the doing and forget to think about the whys and the who's. Discipleship is all about getting closer to God, not playing the latest game or using the latest technology.

Day 1 in the books

Well, I finished my first convention day around 10pm. Not as late as I thought I would be out but I bailed on the worship service before it was over. I have mixed feelings about the convention. I was bored for a bit. Having no one to talk to while walking the store and exhibit hall was pretty sad. I did get some really cool stuff, 3 shirts (1 I am wearing), pens, Frisbee and a button and other odd and end stuff.

I was hoping to get online when I got back to the hotel but I guess high priced hotels don't have free internet. go figure. so I just relaxed for a few minutes before going to bed. Was kind of nice not being glued to the internet.

Today will be cool though because the conference actually begins and we have some great sessions lined up. I am looking forward to hearing from some of the big names in youth ministry and getting some great ideas.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Shallow world

I just finished my first session at NYWC. Deep Ministry in a Shallow World. I started reading the book this week because I know I would be in this seminar. I was amazed at some of the stuff we talked about and what that means for my ministry. Some of the things they talked about I knew bout or had an idea but some of it just floored me. I almost cried in hearing about how we as adults are hurting our kids and causing all kinds of problems for them.

Now that isn't sayking all the problems are all the fault of the adults but we do play a big part. We are selfish in how we put pressure on students to fit into our box and what we believe how students should act. I am amazed but also saddened. We as adults and parents (myself included) really need to think about the pressures and expectations that we are putting on our kids. Are we giving them the tools to make it in this world? Do we even know the world they are living in? So many parents I know have a very small clue of what their student is actually going thru and base their expectations on how they (The parent) had to deal with as a teenager.

I am excited about the rest o this seminar and then finishing reading the book. I know this will/has changed the way I do ministry.

NYWC 2007

So this weekend I am in St Louis for the National youth Workers Convention. This is 4 days of training, worship and fellowship with other youth leaders. This is my first time doing this and I am extrememly excited. I am looking forward to here some new ideas and ways that I can bring back amd make my group that much better. We have some struggles in the group and hopefully something this weekend will help my bring things together.

I am hoping that next year I won't be by myself and can bring some of my team here. Our budget has some money for that training.

Look for updates throughout the conference and I as go to the different training sessions...

Free 'Stuff from Sermonspice.com

I love getting free stuff. I have a huge collection of backgrounds and other media that I have collected from all over the internet. I get lesson plans, and ideas for free from wherever I can.

There is one site I use that gives a free video each month and is also offering another free gift for me just blogging about them. Sermonspice.com is a great place to get videos, countdowns and loops to use in your sermon, lesson or talk. I have bought a bunch of different items from them, as well as downloaded their free stuff when it is available. As a church we have started using them also, so that pastor can "spice" up his sermon.

But the reason I am blogging about it is that I get a free $20 gift for doing so. :)

Monday, October 29, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 10/28/2007

Attendance: Below Average
Lesson Topic: The Other Brother: Prodigal Son
Fun Factor: Average
Volunteer Involvement: Above Average
Music: Above Average
Lesson Quality: Above Average
Length of Lesson: 25
Student Response: Above Average

I was once again gone this week, so Jim Nelson filled in for me. I got back in time to sit in on the Sr. High service. Jim and the gang did a great job. I heard the music was great. I thought the lesson was intriguing and got the students talking. This upcoming week, Deb Ayers will be filling in for me while I am in St. Louis. I love my adult leaders...

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Self Improvement

I have a problem. I have to much passion for my students. I tend to get down on myself when I think that they aren't connecting to God like I think they should. Right now I in a kind of re-evaluation of my life and ministry. Trying to improve how and what I am doing. I know that I have so much to learn and sometimes I feel overwhelmed. When things settle down for me, I am hoping to try some different things in my ministry that should make things better.

One of the struggles of a youth pastor is not always seeing the fruit of your labor. You spend many hours with students and don't ever feel like you are getting anywhere. I had lunch with a student who started my ministry as a seventh grader. He was never a bad kid but didn't always make the right choices. I worried about him after I left but after talking to him on Thursday. I felt better and can see how he is maturing not just physically but also spiritually. Made me feel kind of better.

Sometimes God gives you those moments to remind you that you are still doing His work.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Back in Nashville

So ths weekend the family and I headed back to Nashville to visit my wife's family. I wasn't really excited about going back but it grew on me. I spent yesterday hanging with some former workmates and eating lunch. I went back to Emdeon and visit some others. I enjoyed seeing everyone but was glad that I didn't work there anymore. Lots has changed and I didn't like it.

I then spent the afternoon at panera bread waiting for my friend Mike to come into town for dinner. I had some former students come and vist and even took one home. I love talking to them and glad they came by.

I am glad to be home but I am ready to get back to KC. Next week head to st. Louis for the NYWC and I am totally stoked.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 10/21/2007

Attendance: Below Average
Lesson Topic: Live God Loud: Family Survival?
Fun Factor: Average
Volunteer Involvement: Above Average
Music: Average
Lesson Quality: Above Average
Length of Lesson: 25
Student Response: Above Average

I was gone last week but heard that everything went well. I am hoping to post the video on here soon. This week we decided to talk about family and what living God loud looks like when it comes to dealing with family. Each of us has been given two parents, who may or may not love us. The state of your parents shouldn't be reflected in how you treat them. If we are Living God Loud then our goal should be to obey our parents the best possible because that is what God has called us to. God didn't say, "honor your father and mother only if they do everything you like" because that will never happen. But we must honor our father and mother even if we don't like it, because our Heavenly Father has asked us to and it is our obedience to Him that overrides everything else

I know what it is like growing up in a not-so-perfect household. I had a father who was an alcoholic. This didn't make being a Christian easy or living my life easy. But I still loved my father and did what I could to obey him and my mother. We will not always see eye to eye with our parents, sometimes no matter how hard we try but I know that if the communication is open between both parents and adults, and that God is in the middle, we can make it through anything.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Transformers

I couldn't wait for this movie to come out on DVD. Timmy and I saw it on the day it came out at 11pm. I actually woke him up from sleeping to go see it. He was soo excited to see it.

I loved Transformers as a kid. I actually owned several of them and used to watch it all the time on TV. When I heard they were redoing the movie, I got stoked. I became worried about how the movie would come out because of the other many tv to movie remakes that turned out horrible.

I was highly amazed at this movie... The effects were awesome. They storyline was great. The acting was good. Overall an amazing movie. Clean for the most part.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Hitting the Schools!

So today I spent the day at two different schools. I had lunch at Plaza Middle with several of my students and then went to watch the Parkhill vs Parkhill South Varsity Soccer game. I love spending time at the schools and visiting my students.

At lunch, I sat with a few students and said Hi to some others. Getting into the schools isn't always the easiest thing in the world. I tried to make this trip easier by contacting the Principal first. He had no problems letting me come in, just was cautious. The district allows me (youth pastors) to come in and sit with students. The funny thing is, once I got in, I had several teachers/ administrators that they thought it was cool that I came in and spent time with my students. I was laughing at it, but got some good conversation in with them.

I do find it funny how students respond to me coming. Most of them love it and get me to sit by them. I had a couple seek me out, but I also had others kind of ignore me. I always laugh at that. Anytime a student has introduced me to their friends, the reaction is good rather than bad. On several occasions, I have heard comments like "I wish my youth pastor would come visit me". I don't think I have ever heard anyone say the opposite. But oh well, I don't force myself on anyone. My goal is to visit each school where I have a student before the end of the year, we will see...

The soccer game was good, cold but good. We didn't stay for the whole game because of the cold and rain. We didn't want our kids getting sick. I like going to these games cause it gives me a chance to spend time with parents and watch the students. I also love watching and listening to the other students in the stands. I always find it interesting to see how they act, talk and hang with each other. The way they talk to their friends. Who they talk about.

One thing I did think at both lunch and the soccer game, is how many lost students there are in the Platte Woods and how most of them don't even know it. I and other youth pastors have our work cut out for me. Making the gospel appealing to kids who aren't interested, is a hard job. But like David against Goliath, we have a mighty God and He will give us the battle.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Surf's Up!

Today was a great day for me. I went to the beach with Kaitlyn and the rest of my family. I havemt been to the beach in a while. I spent most of my time helping my nephews surf. The waves were 4-6 feet high a times so it was rough for them at 12 and 10.

My brother and I would get them through the break and help them get started. We had a blast. My brother and I tried to surf also and that was funny. I haven't used a 6 foot board in a while so it just wouldn't work. We spent two hours in the water. Playing in the waves and messing around.

The bad part is that I didn't put any sunscreen on and a currently paying for it. I am horribly sunburnt... I habent been this burnt in quite a long time. I probably need to remember I am a mid-westerner now and not a Floridian. I am sure I will be peeling in a few days, so that should be fun.

But it was well worth it. the water was nice and the company was great....

Monday, October 15, 2007

Anniversary

This was written yesterday...

So today is the day. One year ago my father pssed away. It was weird because I had coffee today with my mothers new pastor and as I was driving home I realized it was 10:30, 5 minutes from the exact time my father passed away. It was weird. I remember that day vividly. All the events that took place and everything tht was said.

The day has gone good. I spent molst of it helping my mom clsen out the garage to give her some room. My father collected everything so we were deciding what to throw away and what to keep. We went to the cemetary and spent some time there. I will probably go back later tonight.

Rest in peace Roy Elmer Probus Sr.

Anniversary

So today is the day. One year ago my father pssed away. It was weird because I had coffee today with my mothers new pastor and as I was driving home I realized it was 10:30, 5 minutes from the exact time my father passed away. It was weird. I remember that day vividly. All the events that took place and everything tht was said.

The day has gone good. I spent molst of it helping my mom clsen out the garage to give her some room. My father collected everything so we were deciding what to throw away and what to keep. We went to the cemetary and spent some time there. I will probably go back later tonight.

Rest in peace Roy Elmer Probus Sr.

In Flight

Right now I am blogging at 15,000 feet. I am on my way to spend the
weekend with my mom as we 'celebrate' my fathers death. I can't
believe that it has a whole year. So much has changed since he has
been gone. I still miss him. I think about him every day. I know my
mom has struggled with him being gone but I think she has gotten into
the groove of her life without him. I know it has been hard, but after
36 years of marriage it would be.

I am glad I get this break though Kaitlyn and I are going to have fun
maybe even hit the beach. I will be back in KC Wednesday night. I am
missing an entire weekend of youth service but I am confident that my
adult leaders will do a great job.

--
Roy E. Probus Jr
Youth Pastor @ Platte Woods Church
Cell: 816.522.2946
Blog: http://soulshaper.blogspot.com

Monday, October 08, 2007

Blogging woes

I haven't really been blogging lately. I have gotten really busy and haven't had a chance to log on and blog. My viewership has really gone down. Not that it has every been huge or anything, but higher than it has been lately. I want to make an effort to blog more, to give my readers something to actually read. Not just about me but about my ministry and my God. There is a lot of things I can write about and I am taking some steps to do it.

If you are still reading this thanks, and I promise I will get better :)

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Best Job in the World

I have been a full-time youth pastor for almost 5 months now. It feels like a dream that you have over and over, and then when it finally comes true, you still think it is a dream. I feel that way. I keep expecting things to go back to "normal" and ending up back in Nashville working at Emdeon and Covenant. The dream hasn't ended yet. I am really enjoying our time at Platte Woods. I love the church and the people.

Over the last few weeks, I have really been thinking about my calling and what it means to be a youth pastor in this day and age. I know that I have the best job in the world. I get to spend most of my time with students and doing all kinds of fun things while I am at it. I love what I do. I love to be in the position to change someone's life. I love spending time with parents and getting to know them more and what they love doing. I love getting to know the students and how God has changed their life, to help them through their problems and really moving their life forward.

But there is a problem... I also have one of the hardest jobs in the world. Hardest in the point of trying to change someone's point of view. Students live in a great big world that is telling them to do everything they want to do, no matter who or what they hurt. The world loves to tell students that sex is ok, as long as they love each other. That parents are just people in your life, but no one to really listen to. To show students a life that is neither attainable or actually worth having, but that students should have it. A world that produces 100 million dollar movies to show students that being "knocked up" isn't that big a deal. This world is what I am battling. A world obsessed with itself and doesn't care how that affects others. A world that is pushing parents and students away from each other, where students are raising themselves and currently failing at it. A world so into sports, that every student out there wants to be on an ESPN Highlight roll.

So how are I, we supposed to combat that world. Churches seem to be declining in attendance because we aren't seen as relevant anymore. People see all the major problems within the church, and all churches together. This is why I have the hardest job in the world. Everyday I struggle to show students that Jesus is relevant in their life and that the things their friends are telling them about God, isn't the truth. But hard or not, like David vs Goliath, I have God on my side. The creator of the universe has called me to this profession. He has brou
ght me to this place in my life and this church and these students.
No matter how hard my job is, He is more than powerful enough to overcome anything.

Weekend Wrap-up 10/07/2007

Attendance: Average
Lesson Topic: Live God Loud: Hanging with Jesus?
Fun Factor: Average
Volunteer Involvement: Above Average
Music: Average
Lesson Quality: Slightly Above Average
Length of Lesson: 215
Student Response: Above Average

We continue our series called "Live God Loud". Tonight we talked about having quiet time with God. We looked at some of the excuses, as well as how to prepare ourselves for our time with the creator of the universe. I believe this is one of the hardest parts of being a Christian than anything else. I know that I have struggled heavily with this. Life seems to take over when it comes time to setting time aside for God. We also did a practical application where the students were given a parable to look at and do a quiet time on. I asked them to Sum up the main point and to re-write the story in their own words. The Sr High did better with this than the Jr High did. I was surprised at how the Sr High really got into it and took it seriously. Hopefully this will help them get on the right track.




Saturday, October 06, 2007

Student Center takes shape

I am amazed at how God has been moving in my life and the life of my ministry since I moved to Kansas City. So many things have come about that can only be the work of God. One of those things is our new student center. When I interviewed here I was told that there had been plans drawn up to take some storage space and turn it into a student center. I was excited because up until that point, the students had no single place in the church they could call their own. No meeting room big enough to hold them all. I got right on getting this when I first got here and was really excited. Some people where pushing me to really get this done, but I have been in church long enough to know that politics play a part in everything, especially when you are talking about tearing down walls in a building.

Long story short, we started tearing down the walls on Saturday. This was a great day. 15 students and parents helped to clear out half of the building. I was hoping to get a little more done but I was happy with the progress. We have already scheduled our next work day, and we are hoping to get done by then. The sooner we get the demolition done, the sooner we can start the building. I will post updates as we move on and will keep the pictures coming.

If you want to see more, you can go to http://picasasweb.goolge.com/pwcyouth.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Trip to the COR

Tonight I took 9 students and adults to visit the Church of the Resurrection's Youth Group, Rezlife. Jason Gant is the youth pastor there and he is a great guy. I really enjoyed watching their service. Observing how the adult leaders interacted with the student. How the worship really got the students going.

The goal of the trip was to get the students to understand what it is like to walk into a new youth group and not know anyone and then the other was to see what things we could take back to our group, so that we could get better. There was a ton of stuff that we can take back and I was so happy with the response and excitement from my adult leaders.

Visit their website at www.rezlifekc.org, or visit his website @ http://jasongant.blogger.com

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 09/30/2007

Attendance: Below Average
Lesson Topic: Live God Loud: Where Are the People?
Fun Factor: Average
Volunteer Involvement: Above Average
Music: Slightly Above Average
Lesson Quality: Average
Length of Lesson: 30
Student Response: Average

We jumped right into our new series "Living God Loud" and talked about church attendance. We looked at what it means to attend church and the excuses for missing it. We also talked about how church attendance was more than just being in the building, but that we were called to reach out to those around us that need help.
Our numbers seem to be down a bit, not sure why but I think our services are getting better with more response from the students.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 09/23/2007


Attendance: Slightly Below Average
Lesson Topic: Live God Loud: Turn Up the Volume!
Fun Factor: Average
Volunteer Involvement: Above Average
Music: Slightly Above Average
Lesson Quality: Slightly Above Average
Length of Lesson: 30
Student Response: Above Average

We started our Live God Loud series tonight by talking about the Volume of our lives. Where does God fit in? Are we doing so much that we could never hear God talking to us? Our theme verse is Romans 12:1-2, where it talks about conforming to this world and being a living sacrifice for God. I know it isn't easy for students, because it isn't easy for adults, but we must strive to put God first in our lives and live like He would want us to. Look for the upcoming post regarding this series.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 09/16/2007

Attendance: Average
Lesson Topic: Super Soaker Sunday
Fun Factor: Way Above Average
Volunteer Involvement: Above Averge
Music: None
Lesson Quality: None
Length of Lesson: NA
Student Response: Above Average

This was the end of a great weekend. Probably one of the best I have had since moving to Kansas City. We started Friday Night with Friday Night Flites, then played paintball with 20 students on Saturday (had a blast) and ended tonight with a great time of water guns and balloons. I am hoping to post some pics soon. Next week we start our Living God Loud series and I am looking forward to teaching it.

Monday, September 10, 2007

The Game Plan

I haven't been to the movies all summer. I think I have seen only a couple since moving to KC. I often get preview invitations for different Christian movies, or family friendly movies but don't often go. But last week I got an invitation to see a preview of the movie The Game Plan with the Rock in it. Since I don't watch a ton of tv but my kids are Disney channel freaks, so I have seen commercials for it and other interviews with the cast. I like the Rock (and not just cause he played football for UM ) but he just seems kind of laid back in his acting.

I wanted the whole family to see it but Beth had a Bible study to do, so I took Timmy & Abigail. They were both really excited to go (see Disney Channel info above). I am really impressed with this movie. I almost cried. Abigail & Timmy did. The whole movie was great. The acting was good. The Rock did a great job and so did Madison. The storyline was also very good. Normally, I have problems with Disney movies because they tend to blur the actual family lines, but this one didn't. The Game Plan really hammered home the need for a father, on top of taking the very selfish "Joe" and turned him into a big baby for his daughter. There was no language, no innuendos, just a good movie with a good story and good acting. I was glad that I could go and take the kids. They really enjoyed it.

I would recommend this movie to anyone, especially someone looking for a good family friendly...

Jr High Youth Group



Here is our Service from 9/9/2007. Enjoy it and let me know your thoughts...

Too Revealing or Over Zealous Complaints

I was sitting around watching TV last night and ran across this news story, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20644329/. I am always shocked when other people try to dictate what other people can wear. I believe that some clothes are revealing or just moronic to wear but I don't think I would ever goes as far as complaining to an airline because I believed that. The premise of the story is that the lady in the picture was asked to get off a Southwest flight because her clothes were too revealing, for what seems like another passenger. From the story it seems that someone complained to Southwest and they took it upon themselves to censor this woman from the flight. I am amazed that people are so self-involved that they feel the need to push their own agenda on other people and force them to change... I know that might sound weird coming from someone whose job it is to convince people that what they are doing is wrong and change it. I don't feel the need to go around and push my personal opionions of dress or anything else, on other people. I am not a tattoo or piercings person, but I don't condemn those who are. I know what revealing clothing is and I teach my daughter and students what it is, giving them knowledge to make the right decision, not forcing them to change to what I think is right. I believe we are too caught up in the little things to really see the major problems in this world. On a similar note, it seems Louisiana is headed in the same directions, they are banning baggy pants in their state. Now how rude is that. I believe that is over the top. What is next, no shorts in public because someone's legs are too white. This is what is killing this country, people who have nothing better to do than nitpick at other people just to make themselves feel better... Let me know what you think... Also, I do believe what this woman is wearing is on the edge of being too revealing.... but not enough that I would be embarrassed, I have seen way worse in public.

Favorite Football Team

I love watching football. I have watched the Miami Hurricanes for over 20 years, along with the Miami Dolphins. When the Titans came to town we started rooting for them (since they were in town). Now that we are in Kansas City, I am wondering whether we cheer for the chiefs or stick with the Titans. I love watching the Titans. I have never been a huge pro football fan, so I am not as worried about being called a Band Wagon fan, plus KC isn't all that great, so it won't be like I like them because they are good.

I have always found it funny how passionate people get about their football teams. I have complained about people being fans of teams in place they have never been. Like seeing UM fans in Tennessee who probably couldn't even tell me what city UM is in...

Let me know what you think, should I stay a Titans fan or move on to KC?

From Start to Finish...

Now that I am a full-time youth pastor I decided that I would try to write a 7 year curriculum for my youth ministry. I really believe this is something that needs to be done. If all goes as planned, a student in the 6th grade will finish the ministry getting a good grounding for their lives. The curriculum will encompass all the majors themes of the Bible plus many other topics they need to know.

Most of the people who I have talked to about this have told me Good Luck... I know this is a pretty big deal, but I think it needs to be done. I have an intern who is going to help me do it. He is in seminary and is supposed to be an excellent Biblical researcher. I have already laid down the major themes I want to cover, and this week him and I are going to layout the calendar for the next 7 years. I am praying that this will work out like I have planned. If all goes they way I want, then I will have a rotating 7 year lesson schedule to use, which will make planning all that easier, plus it will be easier for all the other teachers (Sunday School, small groups, etc) to be in line with what we are teaching.

My goal is to have the main topic covered during Youth Group (Sunday Night), then on Wednesday & Sunday Morning (small groups) they will reiterate what we talked about on the Sunday Night before. We will also have information to give to the parents at the start of each month or lesson series that they can use to open discussion between them and their students. This would be things like devotion topics, prayer topics, questions to ask, etc.

I will be updating my blog and site with our progress. I am hoping to get a couple years done before the holidays start. Just depends on how fast we can get things together...

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Mel Brooks kick...

I guess tonight I am on a Mel Brooks kick. Most of the time on Sunday Night I just come downstairs and work on some little stuff that I missed during the week. I also do the attendance for the week, etc. We have a pretty good size DVD collection but almost all of them I have seen many times over.

Anyways, tonight I put in Robin Hood: Men in Tights to play while I work and then when it was over, I put in Spaceballs. Both very funny movies (even after many viewings) by Mel Brooks. This gives me time to relax after a busy Sunday.

I am actually going to take my day off tomorrow. I didn't take a day last week, not an entire day, then the family and I are going to see a preview of "The Game Plan" tomorrow night. We haven't been to the movies in a while, so I am excited. I get preview requests all the time and this was one of the first I followed through on. I hope that it is good....

Wondering Thoughts...

There are many times that I question my calling. Whether I truly should be working with students or not. Most of the time it is because something I have planned didn't go well. I get pretty upset with myself if an event doesn't go as planned. I usually try to cover all the bases when planning my events, so if it doesn't turn out right, I begin to question myself or the loyalty of the students.

Such an event occurred this weekend. I planned to try to have a concert the first Friday of each month to help bring kids into the church in a non-threatening environment. We have had 3 such concerts so far and the number of attendees is dropping each time. We have gone from 100, to 40 to 16 on Friday night. I am not sure what the problem was. I know kids are busy but I figured that a concert by a good band would be worth the visit. One Star Story was playing and they did a great job. Vanessa, Geno and crew put on a great show and are worthy of playing at any venue. We will definitely be having them back. I was upset that we put so much into the concert for only 16 people. I have a hard time justifying the cost of a concert against the number who come. I am still trying to figure out what went wrong. I know we aren't advertising as much as we can. I am going to try this week and touch base with the other youth pastors in the area and some other organizations to try to get more people involved.

I do worry about my students, in this group and previous, when I see them not take God and Church seriously. I believe church is an essential piece of being a Christian. Not a requirement but something that every Christian should do, but more and more I see students making the decision to do other things besides church and more and more parents allow them to do other things. I remember when I was growing up, I was always made to go to church. My mother pushed me hard. She did me and my sisters. I struggled a bit in college but then (obviously) got back into it. I just hate that so many students don't believe God is worth the time, but so many other things are. Our next lesson series is on Living God Loud, and what it means to live your life for God where people can see God in your life without you even saying a word.

Weekend Wrap-up 09/09/2007

Attendance: Average
Lesson Topic: How Does Your Story End?: Revelation 22
Fun Factor: Above Average
Volunteer Involvement: Above Averge
Music: Above Average
Lesson Quality: Above Average
Length of Lesson: 25 minutes
Student Response: Above Average

This week was much better than I thought it would be. I have struggled this week with all other kinds of issues and I didn't think tonight would go well. I guess God had other plans. Our praise band is coming along great. Bill is doing a great job with them, and the other kids are getting excited. We will continue to push them further with some new music.
Tonight we concluded our Joining the Story series. This begin during the summer with Creation and finished tonight with a look at Revelation. The whole point was for students to realize that we are much bigger than ourselves and part of the overall Christian story. God is continually writing this story and we must get on board if we want to have an abundant Christian life. I think the lesson was well received by the students and all of them seemed to like it.

Look for the video to be posted soon....

Monday, September 03, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 09/02/2007

Attendance: Below Average
Lesson Topic: The Great Escape: Acts 16:16-40
Fun Factor: Above Average
Volunteer Involvement: Above Averge
Music: Above Average
Lesson Quality: Average
Length of Lesson: 25 minutes
Student Response: Average

Again, the difference between Jr High and Sr High is enough that I should be blogging about both. I will get there. Our attendance was way low. The holiday weekend really hit it us in our attendance, we had about 1/3 of our students there. I think the Jr High service went great for having so few students, but Sr High still needs some work.
We talked about being falsely accused of doing stuff and looking at Paul & Silas being thrown in jail under false lies because of a healing they did. As a big program we can easily become happy with where we are and allow the little things to bother us. We must always be looking forward and not allow satan a foot hold in our program. We must also follow the example of Paul & Silas and deal with all problems by finding the good in them and continuing to try to better ourself.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

What to blog about?

So this week has been incredibly eventful for me and there are so many things I could blog about but I don't know where to start. Hopefully I will get to everything in the next few days. As a youth pastor I deal in all kinds of issues, especially when you are dealing with a group like mine.
The one thing I want to blog about more than anything. This week has really shown me that God is in control of all that is going on. On Thursday I got an email from a parent telling me that a friend of her son had a father who passed away. I didn't get many details until later. It seems the father of this boy had committed suicide at his office in the courthouse. I couldn't believe it. I can't imagine it. I have dealt with the loss of a father but not in those circumstances. I spent yesterday and today at the funeral and the viewing making sure someone was there to be with their 8th grader and 5th grader. I also took some time to be with my students who were affected. My heart went out to that family and all the friends he left behind...
I was surpsrised to find out that this man was a good family man who spent many days watching and spending time with his kids in their sports and their lives.

One of the questions that camw up was probably the same question that comes up anytime this happens. Do suicide victims go to heaven? How do you answer that to an 8th grader who just lost his father... The deeper part of this question is. cana single act take you out of Gods grace? If this man was a Christian who lived his life for God but in a moment of temptation took his own life. does he deserve hell? That isn't an easy question to answer. You can say yes because murder is a sin and suicide is murdering yourself. Or you can say no because God forgives us for our sins. Explining this to students will never be easy and never should be. The biggest thing to realoze is that God loves us all no matter what we have done. He doesn't look for ways to keep us out heaven. He wants as many as will accept Him. His grace is bigger than any sin we can committ and I think it even goes beyond suicide. We all have our moments of weakness and as much as we would like to see everything end happily, it doesn't always, but God is still God and His love overcomes everything.

Ray for the Easton family and their loss.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up 08/26/2007

Sunday 08/26/2007

Attendance: Way above Average
Lesson Topic: Live God Loud; Acts 13:1-14:28
Fun Factor: Above Average
Volunteer Involvement: Below Averge
Music: Average (Getting better)
Lesson Quality: Average
Length of Lesson: 25 minutes
Student Response: Average

I think I am going to have to start doing two of these, one for Jr High and one for Sr High because their responses were almost completely different. It seemed the Jr High paid more attention and really enjoyed the service, while the Sr High (or most of them) seemed very uninterested. There are many things we have to work on, so we will just keep pushing foward.

We talked about Paul and some of his missionary journeys and what that means to use in our Christian walk. I spoke of Living God Loud or living a life where people don't need to hear your testimony to understand that God is in your life. This will actually be a lesson series in the future. At the end of the service we took the names of students who our students would like to see come to Christ and ways that we can Live God Loud. They were challenged to remember those things as they go throughout this week.

Personally, I am happy with where we are headed as a group. Things are moving forward and the students are excited about what is going on...

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Days Off

I finally got a day off. For the last three weeks I have been at church doing something, or spending time with my students. I love spending time with them but I also enjoy the days where I don't have to do anything. I am relaxing this weekend and really enjoying it. We are doing some household work and might go out today but for the most part we are just relaxing.

And that brings me to another questions, in our 7 day world, how do we make time for the Sabbath that God commands us to have. As a minister that is hard because Sundays is a day of work for me, and there are times I have events on Saturday, so that leaves my weekends out. And most of the time I get into my work during the week, so I "forget" to take a day off. I also used to work for a company where I had to work on Sundays and there are many others in the world who do.

I try to take at least one day off. A day of relaxing and restoration. I know for some that isn't easy to do but I think as a pastor it is essential that I do that. I love what I do and can easily be caught up in it, so I need to force myself to take some time off.

How do you spend your Sabbath? Do you take the time off and restore yourself or do you go 24/7 with no rest at all?

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Getting Old...

So in my busyness of life, I forgot to blog about my birthday. On Aug 9th I turned 33 years old. I can't believe it. I mean I don't feel old or anything but it is just kind of weird to think about. Beth and I were talking and actually discovered that we could now say that it had been 20 years since we had been in Jr High. I couldn't believe that. 20 years since I was in Jr. High. I also think about how some of my students could actually be my kids.

I can't believe it. It is amazing how time flies in life. My daughter is now in the 4th grade.. 2 years from being in my youth group. That is a scary thought. I really feel like my life right now is taking off. I am 33 years old and really kicking. Our youth ministry is revving into high gear. School is in session and the students are busy. I am happy with our progress and I know God is moving, but I am really looking forward to what else He has in store.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Weekend Wrap-Up 08/19/2007

Sunday 08/19/2007

Attendance: Way High
Lesson Topic: Being a Jesus Freak: Acts 9:1-19, 2 Corinthians 11:24-28
Fun Factor: Above Average
Volunteer Involvement: Average
Music: Below Average (Praise Band Premiere)
Lesson Quality: Above Average
Length of Lesson: 25 minutes
Student Response: Average

I am so in shock right now, but I probably shouldn't be. Tonight we had 73 students in our worship. Our Jr High had 50 students, we had to add more tables. I am excited. Anyways, tonight was our first service where we split the group. Jr & Sr High Worship was separate. The services were the same for the most part. We had huge issues with the sound and praise band but it was their first time playing in front of the group. I know they will get better, and they know it to. We actually recruited a few students to help us sing.
I kind of dropped a bomb on the students tonight. I came down kind of hard and serious on them. We talked about Paul's conversion on the road to Damascus. I wanted the kids to understand the seriousness of being a Christian. We looked at how the students/friends get soo excited about sports but are not as excited when it comes to their faith. I hope that some of them understand that thought and begin to live their lives out more for God...

Can't Sleep...

So it seems that I just can't sleep. Ever since I have been in Kansas City I am sleeping less. Normally I have gone to bed at 11 or so, but lately it has been much later than that. Or I will go to sleep only to get up a few hours earlier and not go back to sleep. I have no idea what it is or why.

Sometimes I think that God is asking me to do something or just the realization that I have a bunch to do is keeping me up. I have gotten up and prayed or read my Bible, but most of the time I just get on the computer and browse the internet or read the blogs I read. (I might have to list those one day).

Right now, it is almost 2am and I am still up. I have been working on my lesson for tomorrow and watching movies. I need to sleep. Tonight I am not sure if I will sleep. It seems today I messed up my ear in the pool. I have always loved to swim and we went today to an outside Y. The first time I jumped in my ears felt tight, like I was much deeper than I really was. I have never had this happened and just thought it was something silly. I kept swimming and then Timmy and I were talking about touching the bottom of the pool at 12'6". So I decided to go ahead and try to do it, I have been deeper than that before with no problems. I jumped in and starting heading down, then I felt a pop in my ear. As I started heading up to the surface I felt dizzy. When I reached the top my head was spinning and I as disoriented. Since then my ear has been killing me. I have taken some medicine and put a heating pad on it to try to help it. I still feel like my ear is clogged, but only time will tell. Hopefully I can get some sleep tonight.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Sidewalk Prophets in Concert...

So this week we have Sidewalk Prophets in concert. I am really looking forward to this because I have been trying to get them to my church for a while now but have never had the chance. So when I started putting events together for this year, they were the first band I called. I really like their sound and hope that my students do also.

Our concert last week with Jonah 33 was awesome. We had over 100 students that came and most of them loved it. I really liked the personal touch of spending time with them. Check them out on myspace and order their new cd.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Jonah 33 in Concert

So this Friday night we are hosting Jonah 33 in concert. I am so excited about this event. I love concerts and this one is going to be great. Right now we have 100 people coming and hopefully more will come. This is part of our Worlds of Fun Rally that I have spoken about before.

Jonah 33 is a Christian Rock Band that playing some great songs. They have been playing on the radio for a few years and have a new album out. I haven't gotten a chance to listen to it yet, but I know they are good.

If you get a chance to come out, tickets are only $10. The doors open at 6pm on Friday Aug. 10th and the concert begins at 7:30pm. We would love to have everyone there...

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Busy Week

This week will be the culmination of a ton of planning and
preparation. Our Worlds of Fun Rally will start at 5pm on Friday and
kick of the biggest event of my career at PWC. I am truly excited
about this event. we have Jonah 33 coming to play for us and a day at
Worlds of Fun on Saturday. I know this event won't turn out like I
originally planned but I know it will be a great event for those who
come.

One of the other exciting things that will happen this weekend is that
our new 6th graders will get to join us. This will be their first
official event as a member of Flite Ministries. I am definitely
excited about that. I know a bunch of them are looking forward to
this event and to join our group.

We have some other exciting events coming up that I am also excited
about and will get into later...

Monday, August 06, 2007

Weekend Wrap-Up 08/05/2007

Sunday 08/05/2007

Attendance: Average (for the summer)
Lesson Topic: Can You Feel the Pres?: Matt 4:1-11
Fun Factor: Above Average
Volunteer Involvement: Average
Music: Average (2 songs)
Lesson Quality: Above Average
Length of Lesson: 30 minutes
Student Response: Above Average

We continued in our Join the Story series and discussed the Temptations of Jesus. We looked at the account in Matthew and talked about how Jesus gave us an example of what it means to overcome temptations in the our life. We had a visiting youth group with us and I think our kids responded well to them.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Lots of changes going on...

Holy cow the days are starting to blend together. Our youth ministry is about to kick into high gear and I am extremely busy. The next 3 weekends will be really busy for me. We have a workday this Saturday, which will probably start on Friday because we have a ton to do. Then Aug 10/11th we have our Worlds of Fun Rally with a concert by Jonah 33 and then Aug 17th is our Back to School Bash with a concert by Sidewalk Prophets. On top of that we are in the process or starting up some new programming. Very busy indeed.

One major thing we have just overcome is naming our youth group. Before I even got here that was my #1 priority. We held a contest for students/adults to submit logos and names for what they thought the group should be. We had 4 entries. The name that was chosen was Flite Ministries (Fellowship, Leadership, Involvement thru Evangelism) and the logo is what you see here. I think it looks great and have already started integrating it into our ministry. Now comes the fun part of getting all our marketing together with the new logo.

I am constantly amazed out how God works in our lives. I know for a fact that He moved us to KC. I am glad that He did, but there are times when I don't feel that what I am doing is really worth the compliments that I get (even though I am not the one who should take credit).
I just feel that there are times when I don't put my best into a lesson, event, or anything else in my ministry, but He overcomes that and makes into something special. I am just amazed...