Friday, June 08, 2007
The reason for the switch has nothing to do with Blogger. I have been very happy with this host, but for other reasons I must switch blog hosts. I will maintain this blog only for a little while longer.
Tuesday, June 05, 2007
When I think about transitions, I think about the picture on this post... This is a picture of my cousin and myself (I'm the one in the orange shirt getting hosed by the squirt-gun) having a water gun fight. What started as a simple and fun squirt-gun fight ended up being a serious game of strategy and purpose. In preteen ministry we must find the balance of making ministry to preteens simple and fun to something that is strategic and with purpose. The tricky part is transitioning from one mindset to the other, because it is easy to loose one mindset for the other. In the squirt-gun fight, my cousin and I shifted gears so fast that we totally lost focus of what we originally set out to do (That was shoot at our kids). When we got serious I lost interest, because I wasn't ready for serious strategy and such. He lost interest, because I didn't want to have a serious outlook to what we were doing. Our transition from one extreme to next was all messed-up, so we lost interest and quit. This happens too many preteens when it comes to their walk with God and their interest and involvement in church. This is why one of the keywords that is the backdrop, motivation and driving force for preteen ministry is "TRANSITION."
While a big part of preteen ministry is focused on reaching preteens where they are currently at, a lot of what happens in preteen ministry is geared towards preparing kids for the next level, whether that is preparing them for the 6th grade ministry, Jr. high/Middle school ministry, the student ministry, or preparing them to leave elementary ministry and enter into preteen ministry (This all depends on how your church is structured by grading and grouping). The reason for this is that the preteen years are by nature a transitional time in a person's life: puberty starts to take transformation in many preteens lives (Yes, this includes the smelly odors and such). The way preteens start to think is also beginning to transform, such as from concrete thinking to abstract thinking. Emotionally and spiritually, preteens begin to transform their thinking about the opposite genders, friends, and God in more serious ways than before. What's funny is that I have had some people tell me that not all preteens begin to show or demonstrate these changes. However, that is the funny nature of preteens - they are all over the place, they are all at many different transitional starting points in life!
Research has shown that poor transition leads to many kids not connecting with key relationships or the identity of the ministry at the next level they are entering into. What this means is that they will eventually fade from that ministry and most likely loose their connection with God. What we must do as leaders is make transition for preteens, who are both entering in our ministries and exiting our ministries, purposeful, intentional, and exciting (ie... full of anticipation). Over the next couple of blogs, I will shown you what we do at my church, I will show you what others are doing, and I will give you ideas on what you can do in your situation. Please feel free to chime in on this discussion - which is so important to preteen ministry.
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
This is the best preteen event around (I think it is the only one). I have been to this event three times and had a blast each time (They change the theme of the event each year). Both preteens and adults will love this event.
SuperStart is a two day themed event designed with the needs and interests of preteens. Preteens will experience three main sessions that are full of high-energy worship, interactive teaching, and small group time. On Saturday there is an off-site recreation time, called plug -N- play which was created to give preteens and their adult sponsors a time to build relationships.
What: SuperStart Preteen Event
Who: 4th, 5th, and 6th graders and their parents, youth pastors, children's pastors, and volunteers.
When & Cost: See their website for this kind of information.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
The other day my wife over heard my 11 year old son say something hilarious. He said, "A pack of paper - $1.99, pack of straws - $.99, spit-wade - priceless!" Apparently he said this after he spit a spit-wade at his sisters - what to do, what to do...
Then to top it all off, my 9 year old asked her older sister (Who is 13) if she wanted her fries. She said, "Angelica, do you want my fries - they come with free ketchup!" She will be a very successful salesperson some day.
Preteens - they sure keep a house full of laughter and life.Joe
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Secret Keeper Girl promises to be one of the greatest tools contemporary moms have to connect with their 8-12 year old daughters, while at the same time teaching them vital truth about beauty in a world that bombards them with lies. But don't count on this Bible study to feel like homework! Secret Keeper Girl is the most fun you and your daughter will ever have digging into God's Word together. (Think: facials, tea parties, shopping challenges.)
I have not, nor has my wife personally used these Ideas with any of our daughters, but one of the ladies that is in charge of our 5th and 6th grade girls purity retreat has , and she says that she really enjoyed doing this with her daughter.
Friday, May 04, 2007
Passport2Purity is a resource to help parents prepare their preteens for sexual purity. It will help them connect with their preteen during a fun, interactive weekend retreat! This exciting, guided weekend for father and son or mother and daughter will prepare their preteen for physical changes to come, preempt peer pressure, and establish biblical principles on sex and dating. They will have the opportunity to connect with their son or daughter in a deeper way, create a heart-to-heart time for some of life's most intimate issues, and help their child decide in advance what his or her convictions will be, based on God's word.
This is a resource that I have available for our preteen families to check out and use. My wife and I have used it with our oldest daughter (She is in jr. high now) and several other people I know have used it and highly recommend it!
CLICK ON PICTURE FOR AMAZON.COM LINK.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Is this what you've been lookin for?
If you have been looking for a Bible to recommend to your preteens and parents, or if you have been looking for a Bible to have for extras in your classroom - then this is the one for you!
It has a devotional plan, which takes preteens through the Bible. It also has really cool graphics throughout the Bible, which are not boring or cheesy. Whats more, it is designed with the preteen in mind. My 10 year old son loves to use it and he likes to read all the extra content on the sidebars (He also reads the main content :) )
Discover life “on the edge”—that exciting time between childhood and adolescence (a.k.a. the tween years). The Edge Devotional Bible is packed with great stuff just for tweens. This Bible brings the wisdom of the Bible right into the real world of today.
Check out what’s inside:
· 260 Daily Devotions by Mark Littleton and Marnie Wooding
· 52 Weekend Devotions by Sandy Silverthorne
· Power Thoughts highlight important themes and help readers see how the Bible fits together
· Line Art Sketches throughout for a "newspaper comics" appeal
· Five characters—Jenna, Josh, Miguel, Sam, and Kaitlyn participate in the devotions (and also appear as line art sketches) to help kids relate to the Bible passages
· Full Text of God’s Word in the best-selling New International Version®
· 22 Full-color Tip-in pages
Get the inside edge on God’s Word for tweens with The Edge Devotional Bible.
I searched far and wide for the right Bible for my preteen ministry and this one has really fulfilled what I needed. I recommend it for anyone looking for a Bible that they can recommend to preteens or have as extras in their classrooms.
(Click on the picture and it will take you to the amazon.com page for this Bible)