Friday, May 31, 2013

Free Resouce #47: Christian Media Magazine

ABOUT CHRISTIAN MEDIA MAGAZINE: "Our passion at Christian Media Magazine is to further the Kingdom of God with media. Within the last few years the meaning of “Christian Media” has changed dramatically. The possibilities have gone from being broadcast and impersonal, to social, reactive and interactive, with an explosion of opportunity to impact and share with the world of believers and non-believers directly and personally. This fact is both exciting and daunting.

Our mission at Christian Media Magazine is to focus on the people desiring to use these new outlets for the kingdom. Sharing their ideas and interacting in an immediate and personal way.
Join us as we discover the many new and varied points for impact as they are shared by knowledgeable authors and commenters who have a heart for the Kingdom.

CLICK HERE (to check it out!)

Ran-Dumb Youth Ministry Meme #34

Thursday, May 30, 2013

JH/MS Youth Ministry Invention #7: "Fold Away Bunk Beds"

For your next missions trip, retreat, even lock-in or anytime.  These are brilliant and amazing!  They are a bit pricey, but what a great invention that is absolutely perfect for those of us working in youth ministry!

Plus as an added bonus check this out at well, it folds down and turns into a couch!

Why didn't one us in youth ministry think of this first??

CLICK HERE (to buy one or find out more from "Hammacher Schelemmer")

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Game #33: "Scripture Scavenger Hunt" (Big Group Camp Game)

This is one of those classics, that has been floating around in file folders and computers for literally 18 plus years.  I remember playing a version of this with my first youth group.  It is a great one for this summer at camp, an outdoor fun night, or whenever.  tI can of course be easily adapted for indoors as well.  Use your own creativity and space to add or subtract from what I have hear and feel free to go in any order you like!

I like it because it gets students looking up passages of scripture and read the Bible.  It also works well with a lesson or series about the Bible, Know the Truth, Search God's Word, etc...

- 15 Pieces of paper
- 15 Plastic page sleeves (or you can laminate)
- A industrial stapler
- Roll of duct tape
- 1 Bible per team or at least one device with a Bible app (*make sure you decide and announce which version/translation you will be using)
- Large playing area/space. 

Set Up/Play:
It simply a scavenger hunt using verses of scripture as clues.  Beforehand you will take your 15-20 printed Bible references, using your stapler or duct tape attach them to objects that go along with the previous clue and that will lead the teams to the next clue/object.  The first team to find all the clues wins.  The final clue should be something that brings them back to you or the start point.

Example: First clue could be Rev. 7:3.  The group looks up the verse and reads: “Do not harm the land or the sea or the trees until we put a seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God.” They now must go find a tree that has the next clue attached to it.

Here is a sample Scavenger Hunt references and clues:  (reference in NIV)
- Gen 4:7- "Door"
- Nem. 4:19- "Wall"
- Ps. 119:105- "Light/Lamp" (light pole)
- Mark 2:13- "Lake" (water)
- James 1:10- "Flower" (flower pot or flower bed)
- Ez. 10:12- "4 Wheels" (car...)
- Matt 14:29- "Boat"
- Deut. 32:31- "Rock"
- Ps. 62:3- "Fences"
- Prov. 16:12- "Throne" (chair OR toilet)
- Mark 11:15- "Bench"
- Ex. 37:10- "Table"
- Judges 9:10- "Fire" (fire pit, fire circle, fire place...)
- Ps. 36:9- "Fountain"
- II Tim. 1:11- "Teacher" (You)

Additional Bonus Ideas:
- Is. 22:9- "Pool" (*if you are at camp)
- Lam. 4:9- "Field"
- Amos 6:5- "Instruments"
- II Chor. 6:13- "Platform"
- Gen. 8:6- "Window"

* Advanced Level Clue? - Gen. 11:27- "Lot" (parking lot)

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

News U Can Use: "Touchscreens and Our Changing World"

How Touchscreens Are Changing the World for Kids
- Dr. Claire McCarthy, pediatrician, blogger, and AAP spokesperson, marvels at the power of an iPad to change her son's world.
Touchscreens, I think, have changed how children think about and interact with the world forever.

My youngest child, Liam, is a touchscreen generation child. He's 7, and functionally it's all he's ever known. For him, everything is three-dimensional. Nothing just exists on a page -- there's always a way to go deeper, to learn and see and do more. When he sees something on a screen, he's always looking for another way to look at it, and for something to do with it -- which he controls intuitively, moving his fingers across the screen. It's absolutely fascinating to me -- and I think it makes him more creative, more inventive, and more empowered.

And for Liam, growing up surrounded by touchscreens and smartphones, the world is full of questions -- and answers. He's curious by nature. With the Internet literally at our fingertips, he doesn't understand why anyone would let a question linger. "Look it up!" he'll say, and we do. We read and learn together -- which usually leads to more questions and things to look up.

It's not like all his learning is on screens; many times the answers to his questions lead us to books or museums or get us cooking or building or exploring the backyard or the beach. That's just it: The screens make the world bigger and yet fully within reach, and infinitely full of possibilities.

He's different from my older children, especially my 22-year-old and 20-year-old, who were born when computers were big and clunky and programs were anything but intuitive, in the days of dial-up, before Google existed. They manage the technology seamlessly now, of course, but it wasn't part of how they began to experience the world and learning like it is for Liam.

I don't know what this will mean for him as an adult or what it will mean for his generation. But as I watch him on the iPad, playing and learning and exploring, I can't help but feel excited -- and hopeful.

Claire McCarthy, MD, is a pediatrician at Boston Children's Hospital, a blogger for and Huffington Post, and a spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Common Sense Media

Monday, May 27, 2013

Top 10: Your Youth Pastor Might Be Out of Touch?

10. They shop at the Thrift Shop... because it is all they can afford?

9.  They still the end of every lesson?

8.  They think Katy Perry.... is IN The Band Perry?

7.  You told them to get Face Time...and they showed up at your house?
6. They think Snap when they snap their fingers at you when you are talking to your friend during the lesson?
5.  You said you want to get a hold of them this week..... they gave you their pager number?
4.  They still think Newsboys and Audio Adrenaline....are all the original members?  
3. You told them post a video of retreat highlights...and you found a VHS tape nailed to the fence outside your house?
2. They got a new Tablet... it is spiral bound?

1. They took the youth group to Mc Donald's...and tried to order a HARLEM SHAKE!!!?

Friday, May 24, 2013

Ran-Dumb Youth Ministry Meme #33

Free Media #43 : "My Story: Dave Dravecky"

Although his story is known around the world, most of us don't know the personal pain Dave has been through. Discover how real people, offering the real grace of God, can literally transform a person's life.                                                                                                                         
Video Available:
- HD 720P (.mov, .mpg)                                                                             

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Game #32: Famous Last Words (Powerpoint Quiz)

Famous last words from uthguydan

* A Quickly Created Game to Play as Part of a Lesson on II Timothy 4 about "Paul's Famous Last Words."


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

News U Can Use: "SnapChats are NOT So Deleted After All!!?"

Want Those Snapchats Back? That'll Be $300

In the digital world, few things are ever truly deleted or destroyed. Not if you have the money to get them back.

That's why one company is making hay out of a new service Thursday that offers to recover Snapchats — those supposedly self-destructing pics beloved by teens and twentysomethings — from the recipient's phone. For a cool $300 to $500 per device.

The utility is obvious: this pricey service is for lawsuits, for seriously disapproving (and well-off) parents, and quite possibly for blackmail purposes. Our only question: what took them so long?
For now, the service is only available for Android phones. But the company in question, Utah-based Decipher Forensics, is working feverishly to add iOS capability. Which, considering that most of the 150 million Snapchats sent per day hail from iPhones, is where the real money is.

SEE ALSO Snapchat CEO: Delete is the Default

The fact that it works is no fault of Snapchat itself, which does delete your pics from its servers the second it sends them out. And it does delete the picture on the recipient's phone so thoroughly that you can't even get at it with root access to the device.

What it can't do is overwrite all the spare space on your device. So unless its hard drive is very close to full, or the snapchat was sent a long time ago, chances are a painstaking digital detective is going to be able to reconstruct the photo from all those free-floating 1s and 0s.

"The average person cannot turn on their phone and find these pictures," admits Decipher Forensics in its press release — which rather belies its attention-grabbing title, "Decipher Forensics Exposes that Snapchats are Actually Saved on Your Phone."

In other words, what this company is offering is similar to the service you'll get at an established data retrieval company such as Drive Savers, which retrieves digital information from damaged computers in clean rooms over a period of days or weeks.

The only question in both cases is: how much is the data worth to the recipient?

So think carefully, snapchatters, before you send that next shot. Consider whether it is so outrageous, or so illegal, that your recipient might consider ponying up the cash to preserve it for all time.

Monday, May 20, 2013

TOP 50: "Top Ten Lists"

HEY, Guess What!!? We just passed a milestone a few weeks back... 50 TOP TEN LISTS. Don't feel bad if you missed it, I did too.  I didn't realize until I started counting!  It has been fun and little bit of personal therapy to come up with these on and off over the last year or so.  Thank you for all your re-posts, re-tweets, and fun additions.  I hope they have given you a brief moment of laughter as you started your week each Monday.  Mondays are truly the "youth ministry hangover" day, either coming down off a spiritual high, or trying to recover from some kind of ministry drama?  That is why I will try to keep churn these bad boys out, because we all need a couple minutes to laugh at ourselves and just relax!!  Also, It is amazing how much comedic material there is around youth ministry, church, and the Christian life!!? So here you go...

I sorted out some of my least favorites and came up with the 

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Free Resource #45: "Words to Winners of Souls" by Bonar (E-book)

This free resource includes:
-The importance of a living ministry
-How to walk with God in faithfulness
-How to walk in the Spirit and in Prayer
-Revival in ministry
-How to reap a harvest of souls for Jesus

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Game #31: "THE BIG BURGER BATTLE" (big group)

Here a quick little group game to play to go along with "A CHEESEBURGER NIGHT" and/or the lesson "NO MORE CHEESY CHRISTIANS" that I posted yesterday. It is a game similar to my "Sink Battle Ship" game. It was a huge hit with the group on our cheeseburger night that we did a few weeks back.  

- 6 fast food style ketchup and mustard squeeze bottles
- 4 rubber hamburger dog toys
- 2 small rolling kitchen carts or 2 small tables
- 2 different color bandanas enough to identify teams
Set Up:
Game Area: indoor or outdoor area large enough space for your group to have 2 large teams and be able spread out and run.  Divide the area in half, marking off the center line however you like make to defined “team territories”, similar to “capture the flag”.  On the far end of each playing area have your kitchen cart/table with your 3 squeeze bottles standing up and spread out at an equal distance. 

- Teams:  divide your whole group into 2 big teams and assign them a territory.

- Game Play/Rules:
The game is played similar to “capture the flag” with 2 teams battling to get into each other’s area without being “tagged”.   The difference in this game is instead of “capturing” you are trying instead to “destroy”.
Each team will battle to get into the opposing team’s territory with a hamburger, using it to knock over one the squeeze bottles, while also trying to defend their own bottles.   First team to knock over all 3 of the other team’s bottles wins.
- There is no jail in this game.  If a play is in the opposing team’s territory and gets “tagged” (2 hands) they simply give up the hamburger to the person who tagged them and return to their own side.  -  Hamburgers may be passed, or used to score.  Once a hamburger hits the ground in the opposing teams territory it changes possession.

*As always continue to check out the "GAMES" tab above to see the ever growing list of games!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Lesson: "NO MORE CHEESY CHRISTIANS" (Cheeseburger Night)

Mc Donald's in our town is doing $.49 cent cheeseburgers every Wednesday night, so I decided to come up a whole night based on CHEESEBURGERS!!!

Here is a great, fun theme night including:
- A Full Lesson (with object lesson, video clip idea)
- Fun Additional Ideas
- A Crazy Big Group Game!

Lesson/Night Overview/Main Thought:
"A Cheeseburger without a burger is just cheese, Like Christianity without Christ is just cheesy!”

Key Verse for the Night: John 1:14

CLICK HERE (to get the PDF for the Night)
* also continue to check back at the "LESSONS" tab above for my slowly growing list of lessons and series!

News U Can Use: "Teens and Social Media" (Infographic)

  • For Facebook North American active users numbers are declining
  • The average age of Facebook users has risen from 38 to 41 years old
  • The number of Moms getting on Facebook is rising sharply
  • Teens are increasingly going mobile and Facebook is not their favorite app
  • There are a lot of hot, new apps like
    -  Kik Messenger
    - WhatsApp (*see last week's post- "JH/MS Ministry App #5?)
    that are grabbing the attention of teenagers
CLICK HERE (to see the bigger version)

Monday, May 13, 2013

Top 10: Things You Don't Want To Hear Your Senior Pastor Say?

10. "Man, Your Wife is Looking Smoking Hot Today"

9. "Can I Borrow Those Skinny Jeans?"

8. "I Just Booked a Gospel Quartet for the JH Boys Lock-In"

7. "I Need You to Explain the 'Blue Flame Thing'?"

6. "Can You Tell This is a Toupee?"

5. "Do You Want to Explain The Speeding Ticket in the Church Bus?"

4. "I am Thinking about a Mud Wrestling Outreach Event?"

3.  "Due to the Recent Lawsuit, We Need to Change a Few Things?"

2.  "I Have Been Working Out, Check out These Abs?"

1. "That is I Quit, You're In Charge...Good Luck?"

Monday Morning Video: "Church: Why the Mass Exit?"

Church: "Why the mass exit?" from Ed Burton on Vimeo.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Free Resource #44: "The Porn Circuit: The Science of of Porn Use" (E-Book)

"Science shows us that acting out with pornography taps into our powerful neurochemistry, and this can quickly lead a person to use porn habitually. Much like a drug, the chemicals that fire when watching porn cause the brain to increasingly crave it until eventually it can feel almost impossible to break free."

CLICK HERE (to download it for Free!)

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Youth Ministry Invention #6/Game #31: "FRISBEE FIELD GOAL"

Found this little gem in the clearance section at Target?!!  Great for this summer at your cookout, hangout, beach party, or bonfire? 

I see this as a great game for 2 people or 4 people, as per the instructions, as another similar game to change it up from horseshoes, corn-hole, or ladderball,  but I also see this easily translating into a big group game!!   Take your "Ultimate Frisbee" game to a whole new challenging level with this set of supplies.  If you are bigger group consider playing a 4 way battle with "goals" in the corners of your playing area.

Honestly if you are too cheap to shell out the money to buy the "official" set, a frisbee, a 4 sticks and a couple party cups and your pretty much set.   If you can't find it you local store, click on the Amazon link below to buy it for $15.

Enjoy and Have Fun!!

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Lesson Series: "J.B.F. Just Be Friends"

"JUST BE FRIENDS: Drawing Some Conclusions about JH Relationships"

Series Overview and Idea:
The Middle School and Jr. High years are a time to discover who you are and who God is in you?  Too much emphasis in our society is put on having to “date” or have a “serious” relationship during these years.  Instead student should consider finding “J.B.F.’s” people of the opposite sex that they can “Just Be Friends” with and not worry about “dating” until they are older. It will save them heart-ache and drama. 

The Series Outline Includes:
- key scripture passages
- big group activity
- upfront illustration
- video clip suggestions
- small group/discussion questions
- and MORE!!

Lessons Overview:
#1: "JBF's?- Just Being Friends"
#2:  "Understanding JBF"
#3: "Choosing JBF"

CLICK HERE (for the Word outline)
CLICK HERE (for the PDF outline)

News U Can Use: "The Cinnamon Challenge" (Youth Group Game Warning)

Alright folks, I will be real and a bit transparent. I have in fact used this as a youth group game. It was not recently. I know for sure it has not been in the last 7-8 years of my current ministry, but this in fact as been floating around in the youth ministry world for a while. Obviously if you have watched the Today Show or some of the other news shows within the last week or so, you have probaly seen something about this. Either way, here is some "News U Can Use" about the Newest "Chubby Bunny" of youth group games!? Stay Safe, Stay Smart....

"Cinnamon Challenge: Doctors Issue Warning Against Dangerous Trend"

The fad involves daring someone to swallow a spoonful of ground cinnamon in 60 seconds without water. But the spice is caustic, and trying to gulp it down can cause choking, throat irritation, breathing trouble and even collapsed lungs, the report said.

Published online Monday in Pediatrics, the report said at least 30 teens nationwide needed medical attention after taking the challenge last year.

The number of poison control center calls about teens doing the prank "has increased dramatically," from 51 in 2011 to 222 last year, according to the American Association of Poison Control Centers.
"People with asthma or other respiratory conditions are at greater risk of having this result in shortness of breath and trouble breathing," according to an alert posted on the association's website.

Thousands of YouTube videos depict kids attempting the challenge, resulting in an "orange burst of dragon breath" spewing out of their mouths and sometimes hysterical laughter from friends watching the stunt, said report co-author Dr. Steven E. Lipshultz, a pediatrics professor at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

Cinnamon is made from tree bark and contains cellulose fibers that don't easily break down. Animal research suggests that when cinnamon gets into the lungs, it can cause scarring, Lipshultz said.
Dr. Stephen Pont, a spokesman for the American Academy of Pediatrics and an Austin, Texas pediatrician, said the report is "a call to arms to parents and doctors to be aware of things like the cinnamon challenge" and to pay attention to what their kids are viewing online.

An Ypsilanti, Mich., teen who was hospitalized for a collapsed lung after trying the cinnamon challenge heartily supports the new advice and started her own website – _ telling teens to "just say no" to the fad.

Dejah Reed, 16, said she took the challenge four times – the final time was in February last year with a friend who didn't want to try it alone.

"I was laughing very hard and I coughed it out and I inhaled it into my lungs," she said. "I couldn't breathe."
Her father, Fred Reed, said he arrived home soon after to find Dejah "a pale bluish color. It was very terrifying. I threw her over my shoulder" and drove to a nearby emergency room.
Dejah was hospitalized for four days and went home with an inhaler and said she still has to use it when she gets short of breath from running or talking too fast. Her dad said she'd never had asthma or breathing problems before.

Dejah said she'd read about the challenge on Facebook and other social networking sites and "thought it would be cool" to try.
Now she knows "it's not cool and it's dangerous."
AP Medical Lindsey Tanner can be followed on Twitter at

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Top 10: Worst Youth Ministry Advice

10. Spend more time at church and less time with family?

9.  Give out your cellphone number to everyone, especially JH girls who love to text?

8.  Your wife will not mind if you plan an event on your anniversary?

7.  Swear occasionally during a lesson it helps make your point?

6.  Don't set regular office hours, just sleep in and come in the office whenever?

5.  It is not important to have good relationship with the parents of your students?

4.  You don't have to be a reader, to a good youth pastor?

3. College, education, and a degree in not that important?

2.  You have to be young,  act cool, dress in the latest brands, and be up on pop culture, in order to be a good youth pastor?

1.  Don't listen to the older people in your church or older staff members, they are out of touch and "don't really get it"?

Thursday, May 2, 2013

May Featured Website: "Church Stage Designs"

A free website dedicated to sharing stage design ideas and setups.  Although the site it focused on big stages/main stages in more adult settings, it full of some great ideas and inspiration for youth ministry.
Find some stuff to shink down and adapt to your settting, minsitry and context!!

They also offer a FREE E-book on how to get started called THE STAGE DESIGN START KIT!

CLICK HERE (to go there)

JH/MS MInistry App #5?- "What's App"


According to Tech Crunch, it is
"What's App?"

"WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum was on stage today at the AllThingsD Dive Into Mobile conference in New York City, where he said that the app is now larger than Twitter by monthly active users. He wouldn’t say exactly how many the company had, just that it was north of 200 million users.

Koum also noted that the messaging app now sees an average of 8 billion inbound, and 12 million outbound messages per day, and with less than 50 engineers, the highest ratio of active users per long-term employee today of any active tech company.

Twitter noted that it hit its own 200 million monthly active user count back in December, while WhatsApp noted in January that it had reached the 7 billion inbound messages per day milestone. To some extent, comparing the two is a bit like comparing apples and oranges, but recent evidence suggests that social networking tools like Facebook and Twitter are losing the attention of younger users, who are turning to platforms like WhatsApp instead.

Koum said that the company has yet to see any drop off in user numbers or engagement resulting from their recent decision to start charging $0.99 per year, which means that right now WhatsApp has a pretty ideal combination of user growth, user activity and inbound revenue. Koum is adamant that the company isn’t entertaining any acquisition offers, and with those pieces in place, there’s little reason for them to."

CLICK HERE (to download it for yourself)