December 12, 2011

Coming soon....

Winter Calendar

Ice Skating!

Midweek Devotion

Key Verse: "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you he is Christ the Lord." -Luke 1:10b-11

Read this quote with your family and then talk it over.
"Those who missed His Majesty's arrival that night missed it not because of evil acts of malice; no, they missed it because they simply weren't looking. Little has changed in the last two thousand years, has it?"
 -Max Lucado, God Came Near

  • Do you remember the first time you heard about Jesus' birth? Share your reaction.
  • How have you "overlooked" Jesus' birth in past Christmases?
  • How can you be looking for Jesus this Christmas?

Amazing Grace

Donna Archibald joined us at youth group last night to talk about a mission of her Sunday school class, Amazing Grace. Donna saw an article in the newspaper a few years ago written by a former incarcerated young woman. She wrote about the isolation and loneliness of being at the Madison Juvenile Correction Facility. Donna couldn't ignore this article and eventually brought it to the attention of her class. Since then they have provided hygiene products, DVDs, craft supplies and more to the girls in Madison.

Last night the youth made Christmas cards for these young women, which we hope will provide some Christmas cheer and love during this holiday season. An ongoing project will be collection of some basic craft supplies and hygiene items. You can bring these to me at church anytime. Thanks for your compassionate and caring hearts!

Crafts items
egg cartons
paper plates
oatmeal canisters

Hygiene items
hotel size shampoos and conditioners
bar soap
sanitary products

The Amazing Grace class read Same Kind of Different as Me, which sparked their desire to take action. I'm going to read this over my break. Feel free to join me!

December 06, 2011

Midweek Devotion

Key Verse: "The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." - John 1:14

You can dye your hair, pierce your nose, and even walk on stilts — but no matter what you try, you can't change your genes. Your eye color, your hair color, your freckles, your ability to roll your tongue, your dimples, your double-jointed thumb, your height, your gender, and even the shape of your hairline are all determined by the genes contained in the 46 uniquely coded chromosomes you have within the nucleus of each of the cells in your body.

  • What are some traits that run in your immediate family? How about grandparents or aunts and uncles?
  • What are some unique traits you have that no one else in your family has?
  • Though we don't know what Jesus LOOKED like, we still know many of his traits. What are some of Jesus' traits and characteristics?

November 28, 2011

Midweek Devotion

Key Verse: "So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you." Luke 11:9

Read this quote with your family and then talk it over.
"If we think of prayer as the breath in our lungs and the blood from our hearts, we think rightly. The blood flows ceaselessly, and breathing continues ceaselessly; we are not conscious of it, but it is always going on." - Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest

  • How often do you think about praying?
  • Why do you pray?
  • What difference does it make to you to know that God hears you?

November 21, 2011

Progressive Dinner: December 18

Midweek Devotion: Thanksgiving Edition

"Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name." -Psalm 100:4

  • What do you think it means to "enter his gates with thanksgiving"?
  • How could giving thanks to God more often change your life?
  • How can we, as family members, encourage each other to be more grateful?

Daily Challenge
  • Write God a thank you not for specific gifts you know God's give to you.
  • Change your prayers to prayers of worship rather than begging God for things you need or want.
  • Volunteer to say the prayer before your family's Thanksgiving dinner. 

November 14, 2011

Midweek Devotion

"As God's chosen, blessed sons and daughters, we are expected to attempts something large enough that failure is guaranteed...unless God steps in." - Bruce Wilikinson, The Prayer of Jabez

  • Why would you try to do something you knew you would fail at?
  • Why would God ask you to do something you would fail at if God didn't step in?
  • What do you think God wants to do in you or through you that only God can do?
  • Why do miracles happen?
Try This: Buy or borrow the book The Prayer of Jabez, and read a chapter a night with your family. It's a short book - only seven chapters! Share with each other every night the amazing things God is doing in your lives. 

Key Verse: "For nothing is impossible with God." Luke 1:37

Save the Dates!

November 08, 2011

Winter/Spring Meal Sign Up

Thank you to everyone who has provided meals for the youth this fall. We really appreciate it!

Now it's time to sign up for next semester's meals. If you are able to provide a meal for about 25 people, please click on the button below to sign up. Feel free to team up with another family.

Thank you in advance for providing a meal for the youth and volunteers!

November 07, 2011

Midweek Devotion

Key Verse: For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
- Jeremiah 29:11

Daily Challenge

  • Spend five minutes each day listening to God.
  • Prays as you travel between classes at school.
  • Read several passages of God's Word each day.
Reading the Bible this Week
  • James 4:13-15 When you makes plans for the future, what attitude should you have?
  • Romans 8:28-29 What is God's ultimate plan for you personally?
  • Genesis 12:3b God's plan for Abram included blessing all nations through him. How are you personally a fulfillment of that part of God's plan for Abram?

October 31, 2011

Why the Cookie Project?

More fall fun!

Midweek Devotion

Key verse: "Do to others as you would have them do to you" - Luke 6:31

Read this quote with your family and then talk it over. 
"When I give I give myself."
-Walt Whitman

  • Is it hard to learn to give? Why or why not?
  • In what ways can our family learn to give of itself and put others first?
  • How should we be treading others? Why?
Try This! Have all your family members go through their closets and drawers and pick out clothes they'd like to give away. Put the clothes in a bag, and donate them to a nearby humanitarian organization that is accepting clothing. Then answer these questions as a family:
  • What does it feel like to give away something you've called your own?
  • How will the people feel who are receiving what we've given?
  • How can we be more selfless as a family?

October 24, 2011

Midweek Devotion

"I will say of the Lord, 'He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.'" - Psalm 91:2

  • How can we put into our own words what this verse tells us about God?
  • What does the author mean by saying that God is a refuge and fortress?
  • Why should we trust God?
Daily Challenge
  • Trust God to help you mend a broken relationship. 
  • Ask God to help you try something new that you'd be afraid to try on your own. 
  • Go to God in prayer as you trust God each day. 

Hayride 2011

October 17, 2011

Midweek Devotion

We all need God!

Key Bible verse: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. (Deuteronomy 6:5)

"I would rather walk with God in the dark than go alone in the night."
- Mary Gardiner Brainard

  • Do you agree with this quote? Why or why not?
  • What would be the result of putting God first in every situation?
  • What are some ways we can encourage each other in our relationships with God?
Try this! Pay the game Jenga, and watch how shaky the tower becomes as the foundation becomes weaker. Talk about ways all of you can strengthen your relationships with God for a secure foundation!

October 03, 2011

Midweek Devotion

Read about Noah in Genesis 6:5-22.

"Obedience is a lifelong learning process."

  • What are some of the life lessons you have learned the "hard way"?
  • How can learning obedience to God and others be a blessing to you?
  • How can your family help you make decisions to obey God?
  • What does it mean to obey God?
Try This! Sit down with your family and talk about family rules that have been set over the years - and about why they exist. Then read the Ten Commandments together, talk about why they exist, and discuss the ways family members struggle to obey God daily. 

September 26, 2011

Midweek Devotion

Review the story of Cain and Abel (Genesis 4:1-16). Then read Romans 12:10.

  • We've all been angry with our family before. Why did you feel that way and how did you handle it?
  • How do you think God helps you treat your family members with God's love?

Bible Point: God wants us to love and honor our families.

Daily Challenge

  • Celebrate with a family member when he or she does well at something. 
  • Help a family member with something (even something you don't like doing). 
  • Give your parents a break - take over their responsibilities for a night. 

September 19, 2011

Midweek Devotion

Read Genesis 3.

Something to Discuss:

  • Why did God create humans when he knew the consequence of our sin?
  • Why didn't God just make it so we couldn't sin?
  • Why do we sin?
  • How does our choosing not to sin allow God to demonstrate ever greater acts of love and mercy?
Daily Challenge:
  • Keep the TV off this week to avoid temptation.
  • Read God'd Word to keep your mind off temptation (and to get to know Jesus better),
  • When your friends tempt you with gossip, resist!

September 13, 2011

Midweek Devotion

"Becoming the Beloved is pulling the truth revealed to me from above down into the ordinariness of what I am, in face, thinking of, talking about and doing from hour to hour." (Henri J.M. Nouwen, Life of the Beloved)

Read Psalm 139:14
  • How does knowing God loves you change the way you think about yourself? other people?
  • What difference does God's immense love for you make in your ordinary life?
  • How can you live more like God's beloved child?
Try this! Think about how much God loves you. Now thank about how much God loves each member of your family. Choose a day this week and commit to treating your family members as God's beloved children for that entire day. The following day, talk about how it felt to treat each other and be treated that way. Was it as easy or hard as you expected it to be? Why or why not?

September 07, 2011

September 06, 2011

Midweek Devotion

Midweek Devotionfaithweaver
This past Sunday all the youth started a new curriculum from  FaithWeaver. We talked about Creation (Genesis 1).

Here are some things to think about as a family this week:
What can we learn from what God has created?
What do you think Bible means when it says we are created in the image of God?
What are some family traditions our family has created? What do they tell us about our family?

Try This! Pile everying on the family car! Take a drive around a city and then into the country. Have different members in the family point out things they are thanksful God made. Piutn out unique animals, trees, clouds - anything that show's God creativity. 

September 01, 2011

Mid-week Devotion

Are you looking for a way to connect Sunday morning conversations to your family during the week?

Starting this Sunday, preschool, 4th-12th grade and some adult classes will begin a new curriculum called FaithWeaver. Each week these classes will study the same Biblical story in a way that is appropriate for their age. As the Discipleship and Formation Team, we hope this will help your family grow closer together as you share the Bible stories together.

Check out a devotion you can use next week!

August 16, 2011

UMYF Fall Kick Off!

Volunteers Unite!

Recruiting volunteers can be a time consuming task! Our Family & Children's Pastor, Danyelle, introduced me to VolunteerSpot and we're going to try it out. I've set up a sign up for UMYF meals. It was VERY easy to create and looks very user friendly. Check it out and let me know what you think. While you're there, you should sign up for a meal too! (Clever, eh?)

Less Paper Please!

I know it's a pain to sign the forms every time we have a youth event. Believe me, I don't enjoy filling my office with paper! For the time being, we need to keep the liability form for each event. However, there will only be ONE covenant form that you have to sign for the WHOLE year! This will reduce paper drastically and save you the hassle of getting signatures all the time. Bring this signed covenant with you to the Kick Off (this Sunday at 5:30!!) and you won't have to turn another one in until NEXT year! 

Fall Calendar

High School Fall Retreat, Sept. 9-11