Monday, September 23, 2013

Youth groups are for... the youth!

I was at Jr. Pitch and Praise on the weekend with over 850 Jr Highers who were all hopped up on sugar (thanks organizers for throwing out lots of candy before meetings began!) and going through the "I'm trying to be a teen and a kid at the same time" personalities. There was (NO) sleep... okay some... and it rained the whole weekend pretty much. 

The teaching was good, the music was good, the juggler/entertainer was incredible, and the time spent with the youth in our small groups was very good! One thing I remembered very fast, youth group is definitely for the youth! Try keeping up to them! You need to be in shape to keep up their speed! Luckily at their age you don't have to be a physical guru, that's for Sr High leaders! 

This yearly event is something every youth should go to if they can. It is something they won't forget. For leaders? It is something they won't forget either - whether it's for the popping cups in the lunch room or screaming or the connecting with their youth in sports or spiritual times - their lives get impacted too. 

But it is definitely for the young! I'm in recovery mode... it was still fun though and challenging spiritually for all!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Halls of Faith - will we be in there?

I've continued my reading through Hebrews and at chapter 11 last night I was dealing with the topic of heroes of the faith, and it got me wondering if when walking through the halls of faith - would I be considered one to be counted in that list someday? You know, someday people would be able to look back and say, "He was a man of faith like Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and the prophets and apostles..." It's a humbling thing to think about. Are we being strong enough in our faith to one day have people look back and say we were a strong example for them to follow?

There have been times in my life where I know I have thought of myself higher than I should have. God had to humble me. I compare myself to the heroes of the faith and think can I ever match up? Then I remember - Moses made excuses, David was an adulterer, Samson had a lust problem, Peter had a temper issue, and more. They were human like me. They had faults like me and yet were considered heroes of the faith BECAUSE of their faith, not because of what they did. It gives me hope that I have a chance to be like them! A hero of the faith! Just human, but still someone others might look up to one day and say "What a man of faith..."

Friday, September 06, 2013

Daily Devotions Highlights - Hebrews 1

I'm doing something different for my BLOG, I'm using it for Daily Devotions weekly highlights. I just started the book of Hebrews, and today was Hebrews 1. In that passage it talks about Jesus being the EXACT representation of God's glory. That He is above the angels and described as God who will rule the nations with a scepter of justice. That His name is above the names of angels, and his place is at the right side of the Father, the position of power in that culture. To be seated at the right side was deemed to be the seat of power and authority, the opposite of what's wrong - giving equal honour and authority to the one in the middle. So Jesus being described as sitting at the right hand of God the Father meant He was equal to God in every way in power and authority. It's quite a description. 

Another thing to notice about the passage is OUR position - we are ministered to by the angels, to be served by them because we inherit salvation through Jesus! 

This could easily feed our egos, but it shouldn't. It should really help us to realize how fortunate we are. Other passages of scripture talk about how we as believers will some day judge angels! Wow. Heavy stuff right? 

So what does this mean to me - to us - today? Realize who Jesus is - what His position is, that He is God Almighty! He has the authority to rule. realize our positions - we are only where we are in the spiritual rankings above the angels because of what Jesus did for us. We ought not to take a high thought of ourselves, but in humility realize where we are and be gracious and humble. 

Humble does not mean doormat, but it does mean we consider others better than ourselves - looking out for their needs. I will be posting these devotional highlights weekly. So next week will cover Hebrews 2 - 8. Be prepared! God bless!