We have updated our Favorite Music Video Page with this weekend’s music pick(s). One of our favorite groups put out a great Christmas Album. Today’s pick is “Little Drummer Boy” by MercyMe. What is your favorite Christmas Song and Singer? Be sure and check each weekend for the new song(s) we have added. We hope it ministers to you.
Tags: boy, Christianity, Christmas, Drummer, Faith, God, Inspiration, MercyMe, music, Religion, spirituality, teen, Teenagers, Teens, video, Youth, youth leader, Youth Ministry
Tags: all your heart, Christianity, Devotional, easy, Faith, God, Inspiration, ISS, Love the Lord Your God, Matthew, Mouse trap, Religion, simple, spirituality
When you wanted to know how to do something, have you ever had someone tell you, “It’s so simple anyone can do it.”? I know I have used that phrase before. You can find things out there from “ISS Mouse Traps” to “It’s So Simple Taxes” to “It’s So Simple Testy Studying Steps” to “It’s So Simple to Learn the Computer”. A lot of times these “It’s So Simple” products or programs really turn out to be not so simple. You really don’t know until you buy the product or take the class to find out if it is really that simple. There really is no guarantee. It boils down to our own personalities, intellect, skills and ability to learn, etc. There is one thing in life that does have a guarantee that it is so simple. Yet, most people (unknowingly sometimes with the help of the devil) make it very complicated. People want to make getting to Heaven and have a relationship with Christ so complicated. They have steps that you have to follow, works you have to do, etc. When in reality, Jesus made it all so simple.
The Pharisees were the religious leaders of Jesus’ time and they thought they had everything all figured out. They had the law Moses gave them to follow along with a lot of other laws they had created over the years. They took what God gave them and over complicated it. On one occasion they came to Jesus with a goal to trip Him up publically to draw people away from Him and to themselves and their religious ways. They asked Him to tell everyone what the most important commandment was to obey. In Matthew 22:37-38 we see His response:
37 He said to him, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. 38 This is the greatest and most important commandment.
Complete love and devotion to God with our whole being is God’s simple plan for a relationship with Him. If we just did this, we would naturally be obeying all the other commandments God gave Moses. We don’t’ need all the step by step man-made outlined laws of the Pharisees. It doesn’t have to be complicated. We just simply need to believe God loved us and sent us His Son to die for our sins and to rise from the dead and live again. We don’t have to do anything. We don’t have to follow any steps. We just have to believe and love God. We don’t need a list of works to do for God. We don’t have to knock on so many doors and ride a bicycle. We don’t need to attend only Saturday services or read out of a certain set of printed materials made by the leaders of the church. If we simply love God with all our heart we will hear God’s voice daily in our lives guiding us and leading us and showing us what to do. We will want to read His Bible every chance we can and learn about God and learn what He expects of us. When we love our boyfriends and girlfriends, we want to be with them all the time and share everything with them. We can’t wait to see them. Our love for them naturally causes us to tell them kind and loving words. We naturally want to give them things and do things for them. We need to apply this same lifestyle habit to our relationship with God. We need make it simple and love Him with our whole heart, mind and soul.
It’s like the ISS Mouse Trap. Just take a five gallon bucket with peanut butter and bacon bits in it and put a board up to the top of it and the mouse will crawl up it and fall in. How simple can you get? Just simply devote yourself wholeheartedly to God like you would to your boyfriend or girlfriend. Give God your all. He has already done that for you.
Tags: Christianity, Youth, Teens, Teenagers, God, Faith, Inspiration, America, history, teen, Bible, Youth Ministry, youth leader, Thankful, thankfulness, Thanksgiving, student, student ministry, HighSchool
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone! Tell us what you are Thankful for today. Share a favorite Thanksgiving memory with us. If you would like to learn some of the true History of our country listen to these great audio podcasts of the story of Christopher Columbus, Pilgrims, Native Americans, and Thanksgiving.
Tags: Christianity, Colossians, Corinthians, Devotional, Faith, God, High School, Psalm, Religion, spirituality, student, student ministry, teen, Teenagers, Teens, Thankful, thankfulness, Thanksgiving, Youth, youth leader, Youth Ministry
Many people, whether they be youth or adults, are not very good about expressing gratefulness or thankfulness for what they have or receive from others. There tends to be an attitude that everything is owed to a person. Kids think their parents owe them name brand and in-style clothes. When in reality parents really just owe kids descent clothes to wear and a roof over their heads. Adults think kids automatically owe them respect. When in reality many parents don’t deserve respect just because of the way they treat their kids. The media isn’t helping with any of these attitudes with shows like the Simpsons, Family Guy, Disney “Family” Shows and Network Sitcoms. The kids, youth and adults are being taught bad morals. They are taught to disrespect each other. They are taught that that they need to have the latest gadgets, clothing and cars from 15 second commercials. There are a series of car commercials that show that the kids or youth are too embarrassed to ride with their parents, just because they don’t have the sport car or the SUV that the next door neighbors have. It is a real shame to teach these poor values. When in reality the kid or youth should be grateful they have a ride to school. Many kids suffer through walking great distances to school, because the parents don’t even have a car due to job loss. We see images of parents pushing their kids to do better at school or in sports. They want them to grow up to be something great. When in reality they need to be grateful they have a kid or youth that is healthy and able to go to school. Our kids don’t need to grow up in to some image that suits us. They need to grow up in to who God wants them to be and we need to thankful for the gift He has given us in them. We need to stop trying to perfect our kids to keep up with the Joneses. Kids and Youth need to stop trying to live up to other people’s standards portrayed on TV or in the movies. Our country especially needs an attitude adjustment. We need to learn to once again be grateful or thankful for what God has blessed us with. Maybe we have a small home and a small old bedroom, but at least God has seen fit to provide us with that. It may not be that new zero-energy modern house with 5 bedrooms and a media room, but it is still a house. Americans would receive an instant attitude adjustment into the thankful mode if they just spent some time with no money living like Third World people lived.
The Bible is full of verses that remind us about being thankful. I will list a few here with their key reasons for thankfulness being listed after each one. Take this week to think about these things and have some time with God to share with Him why you are thankful. Then take some time and share with your family, friends and youth groups why you are thankful. You might just encourage someone along the way (including yourself).
“Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!” (Psalm 106:1) – Good is Good! Thankfully unlike many religions our God is a good God. We don’t have to worry about what He might do. The Word tells us His standards and He sticks to them. He doesn’t change His mind. His love is forever. Ask a person of Muslim faith, for example. They will tell you that they do not know what their god will do. There god is not guaranteed good.
“And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3:15-17) – God gives us peace. God gives us wisdom. God gave us Jesus to help us do the things we need to do.
“Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:15) – God gave us salvation through Jesus.
“Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever! Let Israel say, “His steadfast love endures forever.” Let the house of Aaron say, “His steadfast love endures forever.” Let those who fear the Lord say, “His steadfast love endures forever.” Out of my distress I called on the Lord; the Lord answered me and set me free. …” (Psalm 118:1-18) – God answers us and sets us free.
“Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples!” (Psalm 105:1) – God has done many mighty deeds throughout history and does many things for us.
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” (James 1:17) – Everything that is good in our life comes from God. It is a gift. God never changes. We can count on Him.
“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (1 Thessalonians 5:18) – God works everything out for His purposes, therefore we should give thanks that He is so involved and in control.
Remember how often you are to give thanks and for what:
“Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,” (Ephesians 5:20)
Tags: Ben Fielding, Christianity, Devotional, Faith, God, High School, Hillsong, Inspiration, music, Music Video, Religion, spirituality, student, student ministry, teen, Teenagers, Teens, thank you, Thanksgiving, Youth, youth leader, Youth Ministry
We have updated our Favorite Music Video Page with this weekend’s music video pick(s). This weekend we have a song video by Hillsong/BenFielding called, “Thank You”. Thanksgiving Day is this next week. These are just a few of the things to thank God for this week: Thank You for Your kindness. Thank You for Your mercy. Thank You for the cross. Thank You for the price You paid. Thank You for Your salvation. Thank You for Your unending grace. Thank You for Your hope.
What is your favorite style of music or Christian group/band/artist? Be sure and check each weekend for the new song(s) we have added. We hope it ministers to you.
Tags: Christianity, Corinthians, Faith, give, God, hunger, Hunger Games, hungry, Inspiration, Isaiah, James, John, Katniss, Matthew, poor, Religion, spirituality, teen, Teenagers, Teens, Youth, youth leader, Youth Ministry, youth pastor
This week the next movie release in “The Hunger Games” series will be in Movie Theaters. The first book was written in 2008. According to Wikipedia.com “The Hunger Games is a young adult novel written by Suzanne Collins. It was first published on September 14, 2008, by Scholastic, in hardcover. It is written in the voice of sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives in a post-apocalyptic world in the country of Panem where the countries of North America once existed. The Capitol, a highly advanced metropolis, holds absolute power over the rest of the nation. The Hunger Games are an annual event in which one boy and one girl aged 12 to 18 from each of the 12 districts surrounding the Capitol are selected by lottery to compete in a televised battle in which only one person can survive.” In an interview with the author she describes the theme of the book, “…[tackle] issues like severe poverty, starvation, oppression, and the effects of war among others”. The book deals with the struggle for self-preservation that the people of Panem face in their districts and the Hunger Games in which they must participate. The starvation and need for resources that the citizens encounter both in and outside of the arena create an atmosphere of helplessness that the main characters try to overcome in their fight for survival. Katniss’s proficiency with the bow and arrow stems from her need to hunt in order to provide food for her family—this necessity results in the development of skills that are useful to her in the Games, and represents her rejection of the Capitol’s rules in the face of life-threatening situations.”
Can you imagine living in a world like that? What is sad is that this book and the movie is more wildly popular for the young characters and the action. It won’t be popular because people are deeply concerned about real hunger issues that abound in our world even today. We are not living in a post-apocalyptic world, but we do have real hunger issues going on. We even have hunger right here in America, a prosperous nation. How does something like that happen? It happens because we care more for ourselves than we do others. There are quite a few verses in the Bible that deal with helping to meet the needs of others:
Isaiah 58: 10
8and if you offer yourself to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted one, then your light will shine in the darkness, and your night will be like noonday.
Matthew 25: 37-40
8“Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You something to drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or without clothes and clothe You? 39 When did we see You sick, or in prison, and visit You?’ 40 “And the King will answer them, ‘I assure you: Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of Mine, you did for Me.’
II Corinthians 8:13-14
8 It is not that there may be relief for others and hardship for you, but it is a question of equality— 14 at the present time your surplus is available for their need, so their abundance may also become available for our need, so there may be equality.
II Corinthians 9:8
8 And God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.
I John 3: 17-18
17 If anyone has this world’s goods and sees his brother in need but closes his eyes to his need—how can God’s love reside in him? 18 Little children, we must not love with word or speech, but with truth and action.
As Christians we should be concerned with those around us who are poor, in need or hurting. We should be giving to others to show them Christ’s love. God provides for us, we need to provide for others. In the Book of James we read:
17 In the same way faith, if it doesn’t have works, is dead by itself.
It is our faith in Jesus that saves us, but it is our good works that show our faith. Your faith becomes dead when you do nothing in your life that shows the love of Christ to others. Don’t be like so many Christians who sit in the pews and live in abundance and do not share. Give where God leads you to give. If you have no money, then help serve where you can serve. There are missions to the poor in most towns you can help at. There are people laying on the street you can give blankets to or maybe even skip a meal and give your lunch too. Be a rebel and make your faith alive.
Some suggested organizations:
Baptist Global Response (World Hunger, Disaster Relief, Projects to be involved with or donations, etc.)
FaithWorks InterFaith Ministries Network (Projects for the poor are listed that you can help at)
Kids Against Hunger (You can volunteer your time or donate)
Share our Strength (Various groups holding bakes sales you can do to raise funds for the hungry)
Stop Hunger Now (You can help put together food packages for the poor or donate to the cause)
Tags: Center of it all, Chris August, Christianity, Devotional, Faith, God, High School, Inspiration, music, Music Video, Religion, spirituality, student, student ministry, teen, Teenagers, Teens, Youth, youth leader, Youth Ministry
We have updated our Favorite Music Video Page with this weekend’s music video pick(s). This weekend we have a song video by Chris August called, “Center of it All”. Do you ever feel like nothing is going right? Do you ever feel like you are going crazy? Remember God has been there from the start. He will be there at the end. Remember God is in the Center of It All!
What is your favorite style of music or Christian group/band/artist? Be sure and check each weekend for the new song(s) we have added. We hope it ministers to you.