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Answering Teens: The Evidence Tells Me So

Previously, I wrote about the veracity of Scripture being based on Jesus’ testimony that the Bible is God’s Word. Every instance in which Jesus refers to the Old Testament is marked by the presupposition that the account being referred to is both true and accurate. One example of this is Jesus’ reference to the miraculous story of Jonah being in the belly of the great fish for three days and nights as a historical reality (Matthew 12:40). Likewise, all assertions found in the New Testament are grounded in Christ’s teachings.

Directions for Snow Days

The wintertime gets a great deal of hate because of the cold weather, the nasty storms, the lack of sunlight, and what seems an overly long length. One thing most people do enjoy is the day of “first snow.” If you live in a place where snow is a regular occurrence or grew up in such a place, you may remember snow days! These were some of the most joyous times—that in 2020 (with the advent of remote learning) many students will not experience. Gone are the days of eating cereal while watching your favorite shows and spending the day sledding, having snowball fights, and generally vegging out—after shoveling, of course!

Teaching Kids How to Make Faith-Based Resolutions

As January 1 is right around the corner, many people are starting to think about their New Year’s resolutions. From kids to adults, people are trying to set themselves up for success by creating resolutions they hope will help them lose weight, read more books, or spend less time working. Some of these resolutions can seem silly or impossible or not worth doing. But as we live out our identities as children of God, it can sometimes be fun to consider ways to shine with God’s love.

If your kids have expressed interested in making New Year’s resolutions, you might consider doing this activity as a family! Not only will it bring you closer together, but it will also bring you deeper into God’s Word! Making faith-based resolutions is a great way to incorporate more focus on Jesus into the everyday life of your family.

Teaching the Twelve Apostles: James the Lesser

In the final blog regarding Jesus’ twelve apostles, we finish with James the son of Alphaeus. Scholars often refer to this student of Jesus as “the Lesser,” in relation to James, one of Christ’s inner circle along with Peter and John. Although James the son of Alphaeus enjoys a smaller role in the recorded ministry of Christ, we take care not to minimize his contribution. Notably, Jesus gave him power to heal diseases and cast out demons, and he was present for the feeding of the five thousand, the Great Commission, the ascension, the selection of Matthias to replace Judas, and early outreach ministry as recorded in the Book of Acts. I will present lessons in relation to James and a suggestion for teaching in the Sunday School classroom.

Answering Teens: How Do We Know the Bible Is the Word of God?

It was a beautiful day; the glory of creation was undeniable, and the fruit looked tempting … or at least it did after that simple but fatal question: “Did God really say …?”

With that discourse, Satan led humanity into a downward spiral of questioning and doubting the perfect and loving words of the Creator, who seeks nothing less than communion and harmony with His beloved children. The question that slithered out so many ages ago continues to echo throughout our fallen race and even within our Church.

Advent: The Hope Factory

It was during Advent when I witnessed my first infant Baptism. The season of Advent has powerful imagery for me in the Christian faith I share with so many of my brothers and sisters because it was during this season that I came to the Lutheran Church with my family for the first time. I was at the young age of 12, and my parents had been searching for a new church home.

Creating Engaging Video Content for Your School

Whether you are coping with a global pandemic or living within a “new normal,” knowing how to make a video for your church and school is a valuable skill. Videos allow prospective families to not just read about your ministry but also see your ministry. Videos don’t need to be long; in fact, it is better to keep them short with key speakers and an inspiring song. When I am working with brands for my own social media, I prefer to make a 15–30-second video to showcase the product rather than typing a page about it, because it shows how I use the product in my everyday life. Videos allow prospective families to hear testimonials from teachers, students, and parents while envisioning themselves as a part of your community. If your church is wanting to market itself, showcase its campus, or run a fundraiser, a video is a great tool to use and a great addition to flyers you might create and distribute.

Epic Fails Are Normal

When was the last time you failed at something? Did you truly fail or just stop trying? 

In my work, I ask students to recall failure as part of our now-common virtual interactions. When middle schoolers or high schoolers answer, they usually reflect on a major test or quiz. When college students answer, their responses are more mixed, as experiences at that age are more diverse. Some speak of an entire course, while others venture into explorations of failed attempts at making a team or becoming a part of a group. We then talk about what we learned from failures and how weaving past mistakes into our approach can equip us for future success. These are all from a perspective we see commonly spoken about in our world today.

Prayer: Standing before God’s Throne on Earth

If there is a spiritual struggle I’ve heard colleagues and coworkers raise again and again, it’s the struggle to maintain a disciplined prayer life. Perhaps it’s the busyness of our modern lives; perhaps it’s because this is an often-unseen aspect of our Christian walk in the fishbowl of professional ministry. It can be all too easy to fall into the habit of offering perfunctory prayers at prescribed times and hoping those we serve don’t catch on.

How to Make a Video for Your Church and School Social Media Accounts

Although many churches and schools would agree that the use of video is important, those same churches and schools may still be trying to figure out the best way to integrate video into their services or to create videos for their social media accounts. 2020 has presented a new phase of using and integrating technology into our ministries.