Enjoying the Journey

Posts Tagged ‘teens’

A Post By My 17 Year Old Daughter

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Tammy and I thank the Lord for our children. Like every parent we pray that they will desire to follow Christ. More and more I understand the words of John, “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth” (3 John 4). Recently our oldest daughter Morgan posted some thoughts through social media on the subject of teen suicide. The Lord used them to speak to some young people and I asked her for permission to share her thoughts here. It is our prayer that they will encourage others. The following are Morgan’s own words… As I look on my generation I see a group of teenagers filled with questions, filled with pain, and filled…

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10 Suggestions for Those Who Work With Youth

Thank God for faithful youth workers. As a parent of two teenagers I realize more than ever that no one raises their children alone. My wife and I praise God for every youth pastor, youth pastor’s wife, teacher, coach, administrator, and choir leader who influence our children…and we pray for them. We need them. Our kids need them. The role of youth leaders is more indispensable than ever. They cannot take the place of parents or the pastor, but they can extend the influence of both. Youth workers are key in strengthening two God ordained institutions – the home and the local church. Much of our ministry has been with young people and helping to train those who work with…

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Counsel to Young People and to Those Who Counsel Them

It is my privilege to work each week with hundreds of middle school, high school, and college age young people.  It is fascinating that the older I get the younger they seem!  Not long ago (in my mind) I sat where they sit.  Making decisions and seeking direction. Recently I spent several days just meeting with kids, listening, talking, praying.  Full of hope for their future, every one of them is in the middle of a season of decision.  Decisions that will alter the course of their life.  Perhaps I am more concerned than they are because I have seen so many poor choices and sad casualties. Meeting after meeting it seemed that the conversation returned again and again to…

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Resources Just for Youth Workers

Today we had the privilege to host a number of youth directors on our campus at Crown College.  In the luncheon we discussed plans to begin a new youth fellowship for East Tennessee, the Smoky Mountain Youth Fellowship.  I am excited about the possibilities and encouraged to know so many youth workers with a heart to reach and teach Teens for Christ. We shared with these fine people a number of resources that have been designed to help youth workers in local churches.  I wanted to share them with you.  Take advantage of all that you can and feel free to share them with others.  We don’t have all of the answers.  (The longer I work with teens the more…

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Advice for High School Seniors

The senior year of high school can be both frightening and exciting. I love talking and praying with young people at this stage in life. Following the Lord is a great adventure if you keep your eyes on Him. Here are a few suggestions I like to share with teenagers as they approach graduation and begin the next season of life: 1. Make every decision based on one question: “Is this the will of God?” (Proverbs 3:5-7) Refuse to let anyone pressure you into making a decision until you know God is guiding you. 2. Stay close to your family. – Remember this is a transition for your family too. Family is forever. 3. Develop a more disciplined devotional life…

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Tips for Those Who Teach Teens

One of the great joys of my life is the privilege to speak to young people.  Recently I was listening to one of our youth workers at the Temple Baptist Church as he taught the Word of God to teenagers.  He was doing a great job and the Lord used him.  He is not a preacher, but he is a fine Christian and a faithful teacher. As he spoke, I jotted down several things that the Lord has taught me through the years about  teaching young people.  The most important thing is: teach the Bible!  Not stories.  Not your ideas.  Not hot topics.  The Bible. Do not try to be a youth teacher.  Be a Bible teacher, and God will…

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The Urgency of Youth

My favorite group of people to speak to is young people.  There is something special about their energy, their authenticity.  Some time back I was preaching to a fine group of teens and referred to “us” as “young.”  After the service my wife lovingly and diplomatically reminded me that I am not young to them anymore! Youth is hard to define.  When does it end?  Suddenly, without warning it is gone and…where did it go?  I still consider myself to be young (at least until I am 40) but in a very real sense I see youth slipping away. I have been flipping through an old poetry book this week.  Poetry has never been my favorite thing but one poem…

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Teens for Christ

One of the greatest privileges of my life has been the opportunity to work with young people. Youth ministry is not a stepping stone to another ministry. It is the work of a lifetime! D.L. Moody said if he had his whole life to live other he would give it all to working with children. I truly believe that the greatest work on earth is influencing the next generation with the truth of God’s Word and pointing them to Jesus Christ. When I was 12 years old God changed my life at a summer youth camp. I have never been the same. There are more young people alive at this moment than there have ever been. The majority have never…

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A Word for Those Who Love Young People

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”  Proverbs 22:6 For many years I have heard this verse quoted and preached.  Now that I am about to have a teenager it is beginning to mean more to me personally.  Recently, I told a friend that I have been preaching to teens for years but I never had to take one home at night!  I think the scary thing is not so much taking them home as realizing that soon enough they will be leaving home.  (Suddenly I think I am sounding like my dad.) This proverb has both a principle and a promise.  Like so many other…

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