Easter_2013_Blog_Hub

The folks over at youthministry360 have just launched another round of free resources, just in time for Easter. They’re giving away three different Easter Bible study lessons, PLUS a set of 10-day Easter devotions for your students. It’s solid stuff that will help your teenagers prepare their hearts and minds for Easter.

Easter is such a powerful time for Christ-followers. These tools will help you lead students to do both reflect on and celebrate Christ’s death and ressurection. To download these free resources, head on over to the ym360 Easter Vault.

JG

My friends at ym360 have a great Thanksgiving resource for you. It’s a Thanksgiving page featuring three Thanksgiving lessons and a handful of Thanksgiving games. The best part? They’re all FREE! If you’re interested in downloading one or all of the Thanksgiving resources from ym360, simply head on over to  YM360 and as always if you have any questions or problems with the download, the ym360 team is standing by to help out.

JG




One of the questions I get all of the time is about what we put in the hands of new believers in our students ministry. We’ve done all sorts of things over the past few years: a Bible, Fresh Start with God workbook, Gospel of John, a Life Groups info card and more. But a new resource I want us to get in the pack right away is the book “New” from YouthMinistry360. Here’s a little clip from the SYM website:

When students give their lives to Christ, the Bible is pretty clear: They. Are. NEW! But what does it mean to be NEW? What does it mean to see God in a NEW way? What does it mean to live out the call to follow Christ? These questions can be daunting ones in the lives of the new or “young” Christ-followers in your youth ministry.

But don’t worry! That’s what NEW is all about. NEW: First Steps For New Christ-Followers is an interactive journal that helps students take the next steps in their new journey with Christ.

Looks really good!

JG

It’s one of the most important aspects of youth ministry.

And yet, for a lot of us, it’s one of the most challenging.

I’m not talking about teaching your 8th grade guys what the Bible says about sex. I’m talking about teaching the Bible to teenagers . . . period. The way I see it, youth ministry is primarily about helping teenagers know God and to be transformed as a result.

The hands down, best way to do this is through teaching students the Bible. After all, this is the main reason God gave us the Bible. It’s God’s most complete way of revealing to us his character and his ways.

If this is true, it becomes imperative that we not only teach the Bible, but that we teach it well. Essentially, when we teach the Bible as it’s meant to be taught, we’re leading teenagers to encounter God. And when we’re most effective at leading students to encounter God through the Bible, we’re simultaneously most effective at setting them up for meaningful life change.

But the fact still remains that teaching the Bible can be intimidating, confusing, or for many of us, deeply uninspiring.

I want to change that. That’s why I wrote “The 7 Best Practices For Teaching Teenagers The Bible.” This isn’t a dry instruction manual. It’s not overly academic. I don’t spend a lot of time making the case for why you ought to be teaching the Bible. (I mean, c’mon. You know it’s important.) What the book does, however, is pretty simple:
• It explains exactly what the 7 Best Practices are
• It makes the case for why each of the 7 Best Practices is important
• And it gives you a TON of practical examples of activities and strategies so that you can IMMEDIATELY apply the 7 Best Practices to your Bible teaching.

In case you’re curious, here are the 7 Best Practices:
• Best Practice #1: Engaging With God
• Best Practice #2: Prepare Well, Teach Well
• Best Practice #3: Context Is Key
• Best Practice #4: Embrace Unpredictability
• Best Practice #5: Plan For Interaction
• Best Practice #6: Teach For Application
• Best Practice #7: Know Your Role

Here’s the deal: I think most people want to be better Bible teachers, but don’t really know where to start to gain the skills. My entire purpose behind writing this book is to make it super simple for youth workers to become dynamic and effective Bible teachers. Nothing more, nothing less.

The question I hope you’re asking is, OK, where can I check this out? You can sample the first chapter and learn lots more info by simply going to this website. And if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to shoot me an email at andy@youthministry360.com.

Andy Blanks is the co-founder of youthministry360. Andy has worked in youth ministry for 13 years developing Bible study resources for several youth ministry organizations. Andy is a volunteer youth leader with his church’s youth group, leading small groups, and speaking and teaching whenever he gets the chance. Andy blogs about discipleship and spiritual formation daily at andyblanks.com.



Our friends at youthministry360 are giving away a FREE Valentines lesson. It’s a solid lesson that uses the story of Ruth and Boaz to talk about the God-centered love we see in the Bible versus the broken image of love the world bombards students with. The lesson also makes the connection that the aspects of love seen in Ruth’s story are perfected in the love we see in Christ. The lesson features a really cool, really interactive PowerPoint slideshow as well as a Leader’s Guide. If you want to teach the lesson, all you have to do is roll over there to check it out.

JG