Oct 20
Jay Lowder

“I was bullied in school, abused verbally and physically at home to the point I broke. I got high, drank and let boys take advantage of me because I was so starved for attention. So I started a tally, began cutting my wrists for every boy I let take advantage of me. The cuts stopped at 37. That night I looked at myself in the mirror and called myself names over and over. Eventually I started cutting my thighs as a way to shift focus from mental pain to physical.”

You have just read a portion of an email from a high school girl named “Angel”* who I met in Georgia on a night she had...

Oct 13
Jenna DeWitt

“I was in a loving, healthy, great relationship for four years. It was long distance, and either your boyfriend is going to look at porn or he’s going to look at you.” – Jennifer Lawrence

In an interview with “Vanity Fair,” the film star with more awards and accolades than just about anyone her age (or anyone, period) reveals just where we are as a society. It’s one of the things we love most about her: putting into words that which no one else is...

Oct 08
Bryan Belknap

I am not a theologian. I do not hold a seminary degree. So what follows is not a thesis-like careful exegetical dissection of eschatology, dispensations or any other big words I could throw at you that mean “end times.” This post is nothing more than a slight caution against allowing Christian entertainment – and the “Left Behind” book and film series in particular – to define your students’ beliefs about the future.

Could the premillennialist view of the end times where believers disappear before the onset of the tribulation be correct? Sure. Will it all go down exactly as...

Oct 03
Bryan Belknap

1)    All babies, children, homeless people and good drivers get raptured to heaven.

2)    Dogs do not.

3)    Heaven has a strict no clothing, jewelry or personal items policy.

4)    Until the rapture, all Christians are required to wear some form of Christian jewelry at all times. That way, when the rapture comes, everyone who gets left behind can figure out where they went.

5)    Ironically, all mall cops and shopkeepers also get raptured, which...

Sep 29
Kent Dobson

The religious world of teenagers is plagued with very unhelpful storylines about the Bible. The Bible appears at first glance to be some kind of moral guidebook. In it, readers learn how God wants them to behave. They also learn what happens to people who don’t obey. This is all very convenient for educators and parents if they want obedient boys and girls who conform to the socially acceptable religious world of adults. If they don’t conform, they are shamed for hurting God’s feelings.  No wonder many young people are ambivalent about the Bible. No...

Sep 22
Bryan Belknap

“The Maze Runner” is yet another film based upon yet another popular dystopian young adult novel that hopes to capture the hearts (and dollars) of your students. On the surface, the story of a group of teen boys living trapped in the center of a gigantic maze doesn’t appear to have much spiritual connection. (If “students trapped in a deadly maze” DOES have a direct correlation to your ministry… please seek help immediately.) This harrowing tale does, in fact, offer some opportunity at meaningful conversations with fans.

First, this group of young men is thrown together with nothing...

Sep 15
Natalie Spronk

If it seems that we are crazy, it is to bring Glory to God. And if we are in our right minds, it is for your benefit.

- 2 Corinthians 5:13 NLT


Today, at 26, I am a South African missionary, currently serving at Kwathu Children’s Home in Livingstone, Zambia. As a young person, however, many people told me that my desire to serve in a foreign country was foolish and irrational to say the least. Here are a few tips for surviving a season of “foolishness.”

1. Cling to scripture. Despite doubt from various...

Sep 08
Sean Nolan

And as they were eating, he took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to them, and said, “Take; this is my body.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, and they all drank of it. And he said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. Truly, I say to you, I will not drink again of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.

- Mark 14:22-25


The world of education has picked up on a principle that has...

Sep 02
Jonathan Malm

A few years ago, I was a worship leader at a medium-sized church. Most of the musicians who played with me were teenagers, which was great because the teenage talent pool at this church was phenomenal.

My only struggle was when they couldn’t find rides to practice or when they got grounded for having a bad attitude.

One of my newer electric guitarists was coming along nicely. He didn’t quite have the skills of my other bandmates, but I knew most of that would come with age and practice. He had all the potential to be as good as the...

Aug 25
Brock Sund

Even though I have had many hard days, long nights and extended time away from my family, I love the adventure that is known as youth ministry. It has taken me a while to get to the point where I can truly enjoy and see the greatness of this calling. I came into this whole thing with several wrong assumptions.

First, I thought what my students needed most was a buddy. I thought if I could just “be cool” with them then that would give me the street cred that I needed to speak the truths of God into their lives. That...