puzzling

January 30, 2009

there’s some premises in life, some concepts that live in a nether region.  cursed with struggle but flooded with goodness.  good_vs_evil_pictureashx

hope and love for example.

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Melting…

January 27, 2009

the Reverend Doctor contest round 2 (click here for explanation)…use this creatively in a presentation of some sort and get free things from me:

ht to ysmarko


message prep meets web 2.0

January 27, 2009

800px-web_2_0_map_svgsometimes i wonder if technology is more of a benefit or a detriment to my lifestyle and ministry.  it’s a cause of a lot of procrastination.  it’s a seemingly endless distraction for tangential pursuits.  as i’ve shared often publicly, it’s also been a significant part of the problem in my struggles with porn.  

but despite all of this, i haven’t given up on technology.  it seems to me that there’s too much potential, too much good if channeled properly.  in the last few weeks i’ve had some cool opportunities to use web 2.0 to my advantage… Read the rest of this entry »


broken

January 15, 2009

reading through my journal tonight, working on prepping some talks, i came across this & thought it was worth sharing:

“i spend so much of my life on affirming my worth and pursuing my pleasure, it is incredibly humbling to consider serving One who is, in all ways, the sum of perfection.  the disparity between my sin and his holiness is great than i could conceive or imagine.  the brokenness of my character is greater than i understand.

and so, in this disastrous brokenness, where do i look to with hope?  in what could i ever hope of hoping in?  

only in this One that is outrageously different.  this One, that by his perfection seems so far, is in reality the only hope for me coming close.  close to him, close to life & purpose, close to what i ought to be.”


YM Handy Dandy Helper #1

January 15, 2009

youth ministry, i often joke, is the art not of creation but of recreation.  a good youth pastor doesn’t make everything from scratch but learns to beg, borrow, and borrow unbeknownst to the owner (some call this stealing).  many of my best ideas are other people’s.  the good thing about the youth ministry community is that most of us want everyone else to succeed, so we’re more than happy to share.  in this vein, i thought it’d be helpful to try and post, once a week (or so), a resource that i’ve found to be helpful, interesting, or otherwise noteworthy.  i’ve tentatively titled these “YM Handy Dandy Helpers.”  and this is post #1… Read the rest of this entry »


sled riding

January 11, 2009

old_lyme_cc_sled_hill_1athere were so many people at the sledding hill today.  before everyone else from my group arrived, i had 20 minutes or so to sit and watch and here’s what i observed:

something about childish games brings joy back to old bones.

something about brisk air that reinvigorates mundane adults.

today i caught site of children trapped inside adult bodies, seeing them relive their long-distant childhood with a thin piece of plastic and a long, steep, magic covered decent.

weathered men in carharts and camouflage cracking smiles for seemingly the first time across leathery faces. and then the smiles stuck, setting free wrinkles and laughs, cries of joy.

and the young ones, too; they seemed in their prime.  they slid naturally and skillfully, happily and free.

all together, now.  down and down.  first narrowly missing a returning explorer, just below the crest of the lip, hidden from site.  then, a head turns too late to warning cries and it’s a white-washed wipeout.  wild yet wonderful.  

ramps send more than bodies flying, but spirits and adrenaline and mittens and delight all soar together.  

bodies tire and it’s time to move on.  but memories will stay longer than the snow.


curriculum redesign

January 8, 2009

picture-191

we’ve just started a series on stewardship titled as seen above.  i’ve never spent a whole month on stewardship before, but i’m excited about how it’s coming together.  whenever i create a lesson for our small groups, i always try to incorporate a leader devotional at the start that speaks straight to the leader, challenging them to start thinking/pondering/ruminating on whatever topic we’re about to tackle.  i thought you might enjoy the one that goes with this month’s lesson and have included it after the jump, as well as a PDF of next Wednesday’s lesson, which incorporates a brand new curriculum design i just finished and am pretty amped about… Read the rest of this entry »


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