Sunday, September 26, 2004

Sat night speaking

Well, I did my 10 minutes of speaking. I talked about it in previous posts here and here. Anyway, it was what I expected. A lot of older middle aged men. Not many young people. The president of the organization talking about strategy, program material and the challenge of the times, and on and on. I thought my little 10 minutes was really really good. At least I thought so. It was a little difficult though, because I didn't want to come across like I was deriding the whole material based program. A strange kind of thing in general. But the 10 minutes was fun.
Here are my notes, note that you might not understand some of the stories in here.

1 - intro
Matt 11
"From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been
forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it."
decided to follow Jesus thru Brigade - age 14
hemlock staff thru high school
HOC - senior in high school
volunteer leader for 10 years
CSB was vital to my spiritual formation

2 - forceful men
* Mark - observer week
12 year old kids, on the threshold of being men
took them rappelling for the first time
all kids except the last one went down ok
the last one, made it over the big first step, but pulled
himself up back over and over
Mark - who sometimes has this infinite patience - God must
have been planning him for twins
unclips from his belay, extends his arm from the belay point, points one foot
on the edge
put his other foot on his chest to get him down the first step
forceful, yes?
* other extreme - showed up for a Battalion meeting
with no preparation - read from the Brigade story book

* somewhere in the middle - took achievement to be the
end goal - instead of a relationship with a boy centered
around intentional discipleship
many times it was about getting thru the book work
and nothing else
disengaged, limp, took the easy way out

Forceful men who are advancing the kingdom are not
focused on a program
They are commited, passionate, sold out followers of Jesus Christ
and they understand the role a program plays - that it is a tool
to bring the kingdom forth
They are haunted by Jesus
They are challenged by a catalytic dynamic of learning, risk,
and innovation by being led by the Creator of the universe.
The program is merely a tool

The generation that you and I minister to -
the one that is technically savvy, media saturated,
they demand, and deserve men and women that minister to them
out of a Jesus centered heart.
It does not work any longer to just give out the information
about discipleship, this generation requires, and rightly so,
men and women that are authentic about their lives and how
Jesus compels them.

3 - close - story from SPACE
At Grace, I've got this great opportunity to experiment.
Started and run a core component of the youth ministry focused
on community service and strategic summer missions.
Time of teaching and debriefing and of course plenty of teaching
I have gone from the extreme of having a program fully planned to
having nothing on paper at all. Sure, we have mission statements
and values and stuff like that.
Nursing home story -
55 kids, 4 leaders, 4 cars. Feb vday, almost snowing with kids in beach clothes for a beach party.
got kicked out because we had too many kids.
turned into spontaenous worship at a village center
flowed into another nursing home
But no set schedule, no set material that we use, etc.
It's dynamic and fluid and exhilirating.

As you seek to engage this new reinvention of the organization, my challenge
is that you be forceful men, focused on the Kingdom. Not focused on program,
a set of achievements, or the easy way out.

A passion for Jesus based on is how the kingdom advances
May God bless you as you forcefully advance the kingdom

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