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[The Power of a Gift] The Best .Gif Of All

Katie Sutton —  December 18, 2013 — 4 Comments

I’m not going to pretend that I understand the humor of the .gif.


Most of the time, I just don’t get it. I’ve never been a fan of slapstick, so maybe that’s what I’m missing. But one thing I do know, these days, I’m almost guaranteed to have Bible study interrupted by one of these little gems playing on a smart phone. What’s the fascination?

I also don’t get Snap Chat. How can you have a whole conversation by only making goofy faces at each other?! I guess a picture is worth a thousand words. (Or 120, depending on what platform you are using.)

Picture-based communication has solidly rooted itself in this generation. Instagram, Tumblr, Reddit, and more. And while I don’t understand it all, I love learning this new language from those that use it most. I’m ok stopping Bible study for a moment so a student can show me some lady falling on a folding table over and over again. I like bringing attention to the sarcastic T-shirt wearing guy who walked into the church gym. I want my students to show me the picture that just pinged their phone and made them laugh.

If they will share it, I’ll look. It earns me the right to see more of their life. They know that I’m interested in what they like. It shows me a little of who they are. And just maybe, they will invite me to see some of themselves in real life. Like the other day, when one of my students brought her laptop to Sunday morning bible study so I could watch her dance recital (not previously posted). What a treasure! I got a peek into what matters most to her.

Sometimes the greatest gifts of all come from looking through pictures of the Confession Bear or being invited to see the 25 pictures your Jr. High student posted of their dog. This Christmas, receive all the .gif’s of the season!

Thanks for loving students,



*You can get Katie’s perspective as well as other women in youth ministry every Thursday when you sign up for the SYM Today Newsletter!*


Katie Sutton

Katie Sutton

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Katie has been serving teenagers and their families with her youth pastor husband, Darren, for over 20 years. They have three teenage boys that share the ministry adventure with them. She writes a blog for ministry spouses called Glass House Spouse and she is a contributing author to several Group resources including the Simple Truth Bible, Simple Truth LIVE Curriculum, Teenagers 50 Toughest Questions, and Two Sides of Youth Ministry. On any given day you might find her on the beach basking in the Corpus Christi sun or geocaching with her boys.

4 responses to [The Power of a Gift] The Best .Gif Of All

  1. I love this, Katie – all I can say is….

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