Search Results For "Backward$"


Excited to see Backward$: Rethinking Our Quest for Stuff stewardship/money series release this week at Simply Youth Ministry. If you’re interested in reading the “HSM Weekend in Review” from when Doug Fields and I did the series, check out the week 1 and week 2 summaries right here. Hope it could be helpful for your youth group!



We’re finishing up our Backward$ series this week in HSM, I’m actually heading out after lunch today to finish up the talk for this weekend. I just noticed that Simply Youth Ministry is releasing a resource that might be good following the series. Stripped Clean takes a look at materialism and goes after living free of stuff. Looks like a perfect match!


Little bumper video we played right before the message during this new series on giving.


Was bouncing around on Google Analytics today and saw an interesting trend. There was one search that was far and away the most-search-for phrase on my blog – like hundreds more than the next closest. So what is the most popular search on

Click here to experience it for yourself! It is a search looking for more information about the “hooks” we use in our high school ministry. For the past year, everything we print has had a hole in the top of it, so students could hang in up in a place where they would see it. We give away HSM hooks each weekend, encouraging students to hang it by their bed or a mirror so they could reflect on what they learned that week at church. It was one of the ways we went after

If you’re interested in getting some yourself, we purchased the hooks at Clearmedia Promotional Products.

Just as an aside, here are a couple more of the top searches recently:


Did a bit of brainstorming today thinking about sermon series in the new school year – and ran across some old sermon series ideas. Here are 25 or so for you to check out, if there’s a useful one in there, use it!

  • Loss For Words: When You Don’t Know What to Say to Someone
  • Shine Bright
  • Cheat, Steal, Lie
  • HERO
  • Call of Duty: What God Wants Us to Do
  • Read it and Weep
  • GodTwitter: 140 character verses
  • Instant Makeover: 3 Weeks to Look Way Different
  • How to Stand Out in a Crowd
  • The Sex
  • Accelerate
  • The Next Step
  • Worst to First: Big Turnaround Bible Stories
  • The World Will End in 2012 – a series on Revelation
  • It’s the End of the World As We Know It – a series on Revelation
  • Going Up? – a series about Heaven
  • Jesus in the Real World: Living Out Now What He Said Then
  • Top 2: Love God, Love Others
  • Talk to Me – a series on prayer
  • PostSecret – a series on secrets and exposing the real you
  • Say You’re Sorry – a series on forgiveness
  • STORIES – a series made up entirely of testimonies, baptisms and stories of life change
  • My Friend is Struggling with _____________.
  • Life After High School

This past year or so we’ve had fun with Backward$, Dear God and Save the Planet. Have you got a great sermon series title to share? Give us another one in the comments!


Weekend Teaching Series: Backward$: week 2 (series finale)
Sermon Title: Good for Your Heart
Sermon in a Sentence: Learning to give is a backwards way of thinking.
Weekend Scale of Difficulty: 6 out of 10

Attendance: Down 5% from the previous weekend, up 104% from the same weekend last year
Service Length: 78 minutes
Understandable Message: This weekend we ended up our 2-week series on giving with a look beyond money. I recapped last week’s talk and used the illustration of our robbery to talk about holding things loosely. I talked specifically about thinking backwards about tithe, talents and time – I loved using a current movie clip from WingClips (from UP), a poll from PollEverywhere and a great failure story about my holding money too tightly. Really enjoyed creating and delivering this talk.

Volunteer/Student Involvement: Students did lights, camera, sound greeted and ran the control room. The student band (freshman!) sounded about as good as last week’s senior band – and this week, Taffy took away the words to the song and the music stands. It was a huge improvement over recent services. Some adults were present throughout the weekend – the ones who come are so faithful and solid, we just need to double the number of them!

Element of Fun/Positive Environment: We played another round of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, and it was a total blast. The key to a successful round of game shows is the right questions, a strong host and a competent contestant. We were usually at least 2 for 3 so it worked pretty well. Jake was brilliant on stage as well, always playing the “angry at the audience for giving away the answers” game show host.

Music Playlist: Money, The Grateful, The Stand, You Deserve

Favorite Moment: Each service we gave away some dollar bills to random people in the audience. Each bill had the word “opportunity” written on it. They were told that every dollar in their wallet/purse was an opportunity to serve themselves or serve others – oh, and that the word written on the bill would soon disappear – it was written with disappearing ink and would look like all of their other dollars in just a few hours.

Next up: You Own The Weekend: Seniors

Weekend Teaching Series: Backward$: week 1
Sermon Title: Good for Your Heart
Sermon in a Sentence: Learning to give is a backwards way of thinking.
Weekend Scale of Difficulty: 7 out of 10

Attendance: Down 1% from the previous weekend, up 120% from the same weekend last year
Service Length: 71 minutes
Understandable Message: Doug Fields taught this weekend on giving. He went after how giving is good for our hearts and asked what the world would look like if we were more generous. The world offers one message – get more and more, consume, get, must have – our life becomes a quest for stuff. But Jesus offers a backward way of thinking about money and giving it all, and yourself, away. He used this great SNL clip about debt to kick off the message, too.

Volunteer/Student Involvement: The band and choir doubled as greeters and ushers. Other students ran the cameras and one student made a promo video for camp as well. I grabbed a few students to pass out bulletins and pens during the message, and they also helped hand out stuff at the end, too. A great band (led by a couple of seniors) and the choir always adds extra energy, too.

Element of Fun/Positive Environment: We played “Who Wants to Be a Hundredaire” – bringing a contestant on stage and having them work through some interesting questions on money. We did an “Ask the Audience” lifeline using that was fantastic as well. Taffy’s funny Killball Cup video played strong, too.

Music Playlist: Gone, With Everything, Everything, Your Love is Strong

Favorite Moment: We did several baptisms this weekend – four students from a local high school all got baptized on the same night, surrounded by tons of their classmates cheering them on. Epic.

Next up: Backward$ week 2 (series finale)

Used this SNL clip this weekend to kickoff our “Backward$” giving series. Revolutionary thinking!