Playbook Unlimited // Search Results For: Dating/Marriage
The sad tragedy is that no one ever teaches you how to be a parent until it's almost too late and you have kids. No one teaches you how to handle finances until you get in a big mess. Perhaps more importantly, no one ever teaches you how to affair-proof your marriage until long after you've said "I do" and someone has crossed a line. Unfortunately, I think sometimes we plan more carefully for birthday parties and Christmas celebrations than we do our future marriage. Statistics tells us that 2/3 of married men and 1/2 of married women in America will have at least one affair in their marriage. How heart wrenching!
In this Source, "Affair-Proofing Your Future Marriage," we repeatedly remind students that "dating is just dress rehearsal for marriage." And, if we step into infidelity traps while dating, there is a high probability we will in marriage as well. So, using a fun video, a memorable story and God's Word, we take the opportunity on this night to teach students how to "affair-proof" themselves, their lifestyle, and their future spouses. Equipping our kids now has the potential to save a whole lot of dating and marriage heartache later.
NYLC Breakout Session
Jon has a full-time job in sales and is also a volunteer with LifeChurch.tv & Switch Youth Ministries. Paula has volunteered for many years in youth ministry, including one of Jeanne's. Along with being volunteers, they have two small children at home. It's challenging balancing a ministry and a family, but it's especially challenging for volunteers that also are working a full-time job besides. In this session, Jon and Paula share how they balance it all using a blueprint to help set priorities and, using wisdom from Proverbs 31, give four examples of how they do it in their own lives by considering their options and making good choices, planting fruitful vines and making the best use of what they are already doing, girding up their resources and planning for success, and finally taking time to evaluate what they're doing.
NYLC Breakout Session
As a youth pastor's wife, you have choices. You can either be his personal cheerleader, or his critic. Paula Darracott's husband, Marty, decided to go into full time youth ministry after they got married. She has taken lessons learned as a cheerleader in high school and applied them to her role as a youth pastor's wife. Paula warns, if you don't encourage him, there will be someone else that will. In this session, Paula shares specific ways to encourage and support your husband in youth ministry.
Are you, by the way you handle relationships, a "Chew And Spit Person"? Many of us would consider people who just chew their food to get the PLEASURES OF TASTE, without swallowing or digesting the food to be crazy, right? However, this is the approach many people take when it comes to sex. They say, "I want to pursue this relationship sexually, but I'm not interested in doing it within the context of marriage. Like a person that chews food for the taste and spits it out, with premarital sex, we just want a "taste"...and then throw the person to the floor.
In this month's Source, "Chew and Spit Romance," I'm talking about what the Bible says about sex outside of marriage. It's a touchy topic, but with some creative elements and an incredible closing story, this message is one that students can deeply listen to.
Romance can be a TRICKY thing! As Christians, it's sometimes painfully easy to "play both sides" spiritually (kind of like flirting with two loves at the same time). In blunt terms, because of our half-heartedness, it's kind of like being "torn between two lovers." So let me ask this one important question: "Are you COMMITTED...or are you really in more of a SPIRITUAL AFFAIR?"
In a "do now, pay later" generation, today's students want the best of both worlds without having to live with the consequences. In this month's Source, I bring up the "red flags" of living a double life. While students may not feel the immediate effects in the moment, eventually, the PRICES will COST them. This is a challenging Source that could help your students CHOOSE which side of the line they will walk on.
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In this Youth Leader's Coach I get to deal with one of my favorite topics, "Cultivating A Healthy Marriage While Doing Youth Ministry." Not a glamorous title, but unfortunately a topic so strategic that it's taken a whole lot of great people out of ministry.
Success for me is that "Those who know me best, love me most," and at the top of the list is my amazing husband and sons. But so often the relationships in your life that are the most precious, with the passing of time, become the most familiar. So in this Youth Leader's Coach I share 10 things that I have learned to keep my marriage a healthy and fulfilling one while in the youth ministry trenches. Even if you're not married, listening to this will help you understand the priorities of your leaders who are and help to prepare you for the day that you too may share your life and ministry with a spouse.
"There is hardly any activity, or any enterprise, which is started with such great hope and expectation...and yet which FAILS so regularly...AS LOVE." That's a pretty accurate depiction on love in today's society. There's probably nothing that our world gets more messed up than the whole deal of "Love and Romance." In fact, many youth and youth adults may think that there is something wrong with them if they aren't dating someone and they are obligated to give away something that the Lord holds so pure and close to His heart!
While I know this can be an awkward topic for some, we can't afford not to let our kids hear our voices on this subject matter. Join me as we dive into God's Word...together!
"ENTANGLED"...Sounds like a title from an afternoon Soap, doesn't it? But it's really a message geared to helping your students in their romantic and relational lives. It's a theme we hit often in youth ministry because it is the number one way the Enemy attempts to take your students out of the ballgame. The entanglement of wrong romantic relationships and wrong friendships is a repeating theme in significant youth ministry.
You'll especially enjoy the powerful closing story which you can easily act out for a creative ingredient of the night. Most of all, may the night have eternal destiny for your kids as you encourage them to live a life that is not...ENTANGLED.
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C. S. Lewis once said, "The only place to be free from the dangers of love is in hell." How true that statement is, especially as relates to today's youth culture in its painful search for love and belonging.
This Source, "Falling in Love Without Losing Your Mind," tries to give some pragmatic specifics in this challenging arena. I tried to "de-mystify" love and make it a matter of CHOICE rather than HORMONES.
The theme Scripture from 1 Corinthians 13 reminds us that "love does not seek its own way." So as we share these principles with the kids in our youth ministries, let's remind ourselves that the same principles work for youth pastors and youth leaders when it comes to building Christ-like love for the teenagers in our lives. These same principles over the years have helped me to "Fall in Love with YOUTH MINISTRY without Losing MY MIND!"
In life most of us deal with or have dealt with what I call "the compulsion for completion." We tell ourselves, "When I find the right person, I'll be complete." However, truth be told, our emptiness is not so much a case of a missing person, but a missing purpose.
What's the solution? It lies in choosing to follow the specific three step process God set in motion long ago with Adam and Eve. Following it can keep us from sliding into the abyss of continually trying to complete ourselves in others when completion can only be found in Him and Him alone.
Curious as to what the three step process is? I hope so. Grab a cup of coffee and jump back in time to "In the beginning..." Through a shocking news clipping, funny drama, great video and a story that could make a grown man cry, we'll challenge students "not to awaken love before it's time."
Sy often says, "The miracle is not that I got saved out of a particular ditch of sexual sin...rather, it's that I've walked on with God for 35 years!" As Sy states, this is no small accomplishment, considering his history of abuse, deprivation, and promiscuity. So what worked for Sy in learning to get clean, and stay clean in a dirty world within and without? Even if your history is different than Sy's, we share the same humanity. Sy will offer insights that transformed his life, and which helped him learn to master, rather than remain mastered by, his sexuality.
Issues addressed: thought life, memory, fantasy, desire, masturbation, healing of sexual abuse, and rebuilding self-control.
While we may live in a sex-saturated world, the fight for moral purity is a battle our students can win! In this Source, "Let's Get Physical," we give practical ways to overcome physical and mental sexual temptation.
After a few weeks of serious messages, we switched things up for this night in Oxygen. It was a fun evening composed of thirteen 60-second sermons from some of our key students and leaders in the ministry. Not only did it allow for their voices to be heard, it provided some pretty funny and memorable moments that I don't think I'll ever forget.
So grab a cup of coffee and prepare yourself for a laugh or two, along with some great practical advice that will help keep your students from train-wrecking their lives. As always, thanks for the long-distance opportunity to hang out and be a voice in your life. You are treasured my friend.
In this Source I've decided to tackle the important topic of "romance." I often say, "If you're out of the romance business, you're out of youth ministry."
The goal of this Source is to call students to a standard that is a more reasonably paced approach to romance. Often, in our culture, students rush ahead too quickly in this area - moving from one stage to the next way, way too fast! My challenge to my students is, "Let's slow things down!" This will be an easy night...but one your students will remember.
It's so hard to speak on the subject of romance in a way that relates to students and still actually challenges the world's approach to relationships. I pray that as you use this message you'll receive a special anointing to connect with your gang on this incredibly crucial topic.
Your Long-Distance Cheerleader,
My heart aches as I hear of yet another prominent name in the Christian circles that has fallen victim to sexual sin. I am angry at the number of Christ followers that continue to believe that they can "dance some of these lines"...yet not become another fatality victim. But the truth is, in today's world more than ever, the Enemy delights in the many opportunities he has to entice our sexual desires.
A quote that I heard often from my hero and husband Sam Mayo, was, "If not for the Grace of God...so go I." Proverbs says, "Guard your heart (affections)..." for Satan always reserves the right to collect on your sin (compromise) when it is his most opportune moment. So, let's take some time to unpack one of the most important things we can discuss as leaders...whether we're men or women..."Moral Purity in a Sex-Saturated World."
Sy's story is not untypical: broken home, childhood sexual abuse, peer group labeling, and rejection...the consequences of these circumstances propelled Sy into a world of promiscuity and sexual confusion. While God redeemed Sy's life more than three decades ago, the real story is how God brought Sy's life forward. What worked for Sy? Join Sy as he shares his story in order to give you tools to reach the young people in your sphere of influence. Important insights include how God's family effectively loved Sy onto a path of growth away from his past!
When it comes to guys, statistics tell us that over 80% of them view some type of pornography pretty often and 95-98% deal with masturbation on a regular basis. If the stats are even close to being correct, these are pretty heavy issues to leave sitting out there as "Elephants in the Pew"...problems people pretend don't exist in the church due to the uncomfortable nature of the topics. Lest you think this is a "guy problem," the percentages are rising for girls dealing with these issues as well. Meanwhile, the Enemy gladly capitalizes on our silence and heaps condemnation and hopelessness upon our teens.
Dr. Judith Reisman tells us that porn slowly creates an agonizing "brain makeover" by triggering an instant, involuntary and lasting biochemical memory trail. Furthermore, neurologists tell us that when you look at porn, the same endorphins are released in your brain that are released when a person does heroin. This holds true for masturbation as well. Thus, it's no wonder why gaining freedom in these areas seems impossible for so many.
While the awareness of what's going on internally brings understanding, it's only half the battle. For this issue of the Source, I talked with people living with this challenge and asked them what they wish someone had said to them earlier. Between them and some leaders I polled, 18 amazing pieces of advice emerged to help us in our pursuit of victory.
In her opening General Session, "The Rented Room," Jeanne asked the group of male youth workers present how many had looked at porn in the last year and the answer was a staggering 74%. Not just men struggle with porn, nearly 1/3rd of the people that struggle with this addiction are women and it's one of the fastest growing addictions among senior citizens. Listen as Craig Gross, one of the founders of XXXChurch, shares what he and his church are doing to help those who fight this addiction and offers hope to those who are caught up in it.
This Youth Leader's Coach deals with one of your most crucial roles in youth ministry, but probably one we haven't given a great deal of thought to. I've entitled it, "Questions To Ask Before They Buy The Ring." It's my way to help you avoid a high percentage of engagement disasters.
In all honesty, most people put more reasoned thought into the choice of a car or a home than they do into their choice of a lifelong mate. So I share with you, ten simple questions that you can ask your seriously dating single adults before they "pop the big question." Feel free to make several copies of this Youth Leader's Coach and hand them out to students early in the game when serious relationships are beginning to emerge. These simple ten questions will give invaluable specifics to help cut through the fantasy world of a "Cinderella romance."
Happy listening! This Youth Leader's Coach may someday save one of your students from a tragic mistake. So please take it seriously.
Remembering that "Puppy love...leads to a dog's life!"
NYLC Breakout Session
We all struggle to some degree with sexuality. WHY do such struggles exist AND persist? What can be done about it? How can you encourage and more effectively disciple others, AND better manage yourself in these sexually charged and defiling times? Sy shares insights from his decades of pastoral care and personal experience.
Sexuality is a topic that is often AVOIDED in the church. Many times it is because we don't fully know how to talk about an issue that is becoming more and more acceptable outside of church walls. Often the people that are struggling with their sexuality feel as though they would be condemned from the church and would not want to be open about it.
In this month's Source, "Sex- Anything Goes!" I talk about some of the topics that are more difficult to address including, homosexuality and transgender identification. I believe you'll find this to be an incredibly valuable resource. So, listen in and get some pointers on how to speak on such a sensitive matter in what I believe to be a non-offensive, Christ-honoring way that leaves people with a sense of hope.