It's just my junk

We all have junk in our heads. This is mine.

Archive for the month “October, 2014”

The end is near… or should it be first in planning?

I helped our Student Leaders organize and run a successful Hay Ride this previous weekend. It was a huge success due to some common goals…
Student Leader goals…. everyone has a job (responsibility) that takes place prior and during the event, everyone connected to a new out of their hang out group, everyone felt good about it.
My goals… the Student Leaders would have a win, with some growth opportunities, we could attract new students, we could have a fun safe night, people went away with a smile on their face.

One thing that made this succeed was pre-planning , the event has been running for about 15 years, of which 7 have been under my leadership. We talked about it two months ahead of time at our monthly leadership meetings. We had some time to process and put the right things in place.

But we started with the end in mind.

We took our schedule and worked backwards from everyone leaving to everyone arriving and so on. It was a different approach (tool) for the students to consider, because we have always began and ran it in order of start to finish. Staring at the end will give you a concrete finish and we all know there is a static start time (depending on if your students arrive fashionably late… like mine). It offered our students some open ended questions…

1. what time do we need to be done for rides etc.?
2. What experience do you want to send with them? you know.. happy, connected etc…
3. What will you give them when they leave? Do you have prizes etc.
4. How will you follow up with them, letting them know you are glad they came etc…

I could list several more but you get the point.
I know we will vary the approach and communication in running special events.
We follow up every special event with a debriefing time at our next student leader meeting… this weekend.
I, as the main leader, will facilitate the conversations… some questions I will ask each person is:
1. What was the big win for you?
2. How can we improve next year?
3. I will talk about some tweaks…. for example.. a couple of student leaders didn’t move groups much, we didn’t plan for a dark hayride.. one person (a high schooler) filled out a welcome form and didn’t put his address down.. cant do follow up without an address… how will we deal with that in the future? I will add questions based on the conversations too.

I know our goals was to introduce students to our ministry, to have a big win for the Student Leaders and finally to get students who generally meet in small groups into a large organized event.

Missing the Key

We had a wild situation this weekend….. locking the keys in the vehicle.. well you think it isn’t a big deal but it is when the only known key (my spare broke from the key chain and is now in limbo) is in the van. We had enough window space that allowed my daughter to reach in and open the door.

I have been thinking about this event over the past two days and I keep resting on a similar parallel in our faith journey.

We have a good grasp of faith and living it out for Jesus, most of us attend church services Sunday. We are equipped and ready for the week. We are ready to bring the good news of Christ to the world, our world around us. We are pretty excited about it and ready to role..only to find our keys locked in our vehicle.

How often do we have an event in life, slam us… maybe a meeting at school, or work didn’t go to well.. maybe your teacher or boss isn’t as nice as you liked… the alarm went off and you missed it, driving in a hurry to work and the traffic jam happens… Just as if the world is out to get you, life happens.

So, who is there for you? Who has the ability to reach in and rescue you?  It might be a co-worker, or a friend or the barista at your local coffee shop? Who is it that you turn to for help? What if they aren’t there or are having the same type of day as you, then what?

I find Jesus speaks to us in extreme radical ways while we are in the mood. But are we listening? Are we looking for a quick answer or one that might simply sound as soft as a whisper?  I turn to Job of the bible.. He had the good life, riches, healthy and abundant family, a tight relationship with God. (read about it in the Old Testament book of Job). Then Satan tests him. He asked God to allow him to mess with him. God’s only condition… don’t take is life. Well, to make a longer story short… he takes everything but his life…. all gone… his family, riches and health… to make it worse his friends meet him and try to encourage but really end up discouraging him big time. What did Job do?  He waited..

Eventually, the story turns to joy and a restored life to the full but it was in the wait that he grew.
Join me friends in navigating through the middle seasons of life that God wants to speak to us.

God Bless you in the middle

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