The Gamerscore on the ol’ Xbox 360 has been flat for a while – between mission trips, conferences and HSM I haven’t been able to play much at all the past month. That changed last week, when the kids took on Megamind (B-), and I completed Army of Two: The 40th Day (B) and Battle: LA (C+). Fun!


One of the most frequent questions we got after youth workers saw our Summer Camp 2010 highlight video was about black light dodgeball. If you’re curious to know what we used, how it worked and how you can do one, too – Phil recently updated his blog with the details. It was SO much fun!


A sweet little video made by one of our students who went on HSM’s Kenya mission trip last month. Great memories!


During staff meeting today Pastor Rick asked us to make some changes to our student ministry teaching calendar – namely to drop in a 3-week series about parents. He is going to do a series in the adult services called “How to Raise Your Kids” and asked us to do a “How to Raise Your Parents” series at the same time. Should be fun!

Here’s how the rest of our High School Ministry (HSM) teaching calendar shaped up for this Spring:

You Own the Weekend: El Toro
You Own the Weekend: Capo

You Own the Weekend Celebration
Jesus: His Life
Jesus: His Last Days

Camp Weekend
How to Raise Your Parents (all-church series)
How to Raise Your Parents
How to Raise Your Parents

Senior Weekend
Promotion Weekend


Easily one of the most impressive dodgeball videos I’ve ever seen. We’ll be using a version of it to promo HSM’s Killball event in 2 weeks. Made by some students down the road at Cap High School for their school event. Amazing.


This weekend in HSM Steven shared his story about finding identity in Christ. Part of Tesoro High School’s You Own the Weekend services.


Weekend Teaching Series: You Own the Weekend: Tesoro HS (week 3 of 5)
Sermon in a Sentence: The world will try to steal our identity, but our true identity is in Jesus Christ.
Service Length: 74 minutes

Understandable Message: This week two students shared the message on identity – how God gives us a new identity in Jesus Christ and how the world is constantly trying to steal that identity away from us and claim us as one of their own. The message was taught by students who had a couple of really engaging elements to their talk. The first was the giant “T” on stage painted in school colors, actually transformed to a cross at the end of the message. They talked about how the point of their teaching was that our true identity was in Christ and the cross, not in what school you attend. It was a great moment in the service! The students also made a little takeaway, where you could put your thumbprint on a business card which had a verse on it and was to be a remidner that we are Christs, our identity is in Him.

Element of Fun/Positive Environment: Tesoro opened with Hello, Goodbye (Glee Cast version) and students decorated the refinery with all sorts of pictures of Tesoro students. They did a great job of theming the student room, as well as creating shirts and having tons of greeters. They also had a little spoken word piece before and after the message – driving home the concept of identity in Christ. You Own the Weekend is all about students doing everything … and it seems like they did think of most everything. Super cool.

Music Playlist: Yours Forever, One Pure and Holy Passion Work in Us, Burning Ones, Yes You Have

Favorite Moment: The transformed Tesoro logo into a cross became part of the response time during the last couple of songs. Students were asked to come onstage and place their thumbprint on the cross as a symbol of their identity in Him. Everyone of us is unique (thumbprint) but also one in Christ as followers of Him. Great moment and teaching!

Up Next: You Own the Weekend: El Toro HS [week 4 of 5]

This week we started a new experiment with our small groups – Life Group discipleship classes as an option for groups to attend together.

Now, we love what is happening in homes and relationally with leaders, but as we thought about areas where we’re hoping to improve, the topic of foundational doctrine and theology showed up pretty strong. HSM has been moving toward balanced health for several years now, and discipleship has always been on our radar but we thought we might be entering a phase were we needed to give it an extra emphasis. We don’t typically offer a ton of classes, we depend on the weekend service, small groups (we use the LIVE curriculum) and encourage students to grow on their own with all sorts of Bible studies, books and tools.

Ryanne had the idea to offer up some discipleship classes specifally for Life Groups. They attend with their adult volunteer leader and sit around tables listening to a master-teacher (for this 4-week session we asked our adult teaching pastor Tom Holladay) to teach the lesson. He teaches for 45minutes to an hour on a particular subject like the authority of the Bible or End Tiems, then leaves them to have a time of guided questions and discussion.

  • We thought it would help groups who are strong relationally but need help on the teaching side
  • We desire for all of our students to be firmly grounded in their faith
  • It would also make for a geat change of pace this time of year

So, this Tuesday/Wednesday night (both of the nights we offer Life Groups we wanted to offer these classes) were the first of our 4-week experiment to see if there would be interest. We had an incredible turnout … might be on to something here.