Thought Factory Podcast #304 || Help Young People Love The Church: Kara Powell Interview

Churches are losing both members and vitality as increasing numbers of young people disengage.  In this episode, we interview Kara Powell, who is the executive director of the Fuller Youth Institute and a faculty member at Fuller Theological Seminary.  Kara co-authored Growing Young, which is about 6 essential strategies to help young people discover and love your church.  Growing […]

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Thought Factory Podcast #303 || Students Vacating Church & Losing Faith

Are students leaving the church? Fifty percent of students drift from their faith after graduating high school.  Of those who drift, 80% did not plan to drift from their faith when they went to college or went into the workforce.  Are we losing the battle with students or is there a reason to have hope […]

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Creating A Healthy Volunteer Staff Culture

Let me start with this:  We cannot do it alone.  We can not do it without our volunteer staff.   They are a huge reason we as student pastors, directors, the person in charge; can even do our job.  We need loving adults to pour into our students.  People that will sacrifice their time to invest […]

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Thought Factory Podcast #205 || The Crisis Moment for Students

Hosts Jeff Eckart and Jayson Brewer interview Charlie Alcock, a youth ministry professor at Indiana Wesleyan University.  Charlie has been a youth leader/youth pastor for 28 years and now raises up the next generation of youth leaders who sense God’s call into ministry.  We discuss many aspects of students’ life, but more specifically the time […]

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10 Ways To Invest In Your Students

But, that can mean a lot of different things in one student’s life.  Here’s a list of ways to show up in your students’ life.  And then some other random ways to invest in their life as well.   1. Show up to their sporting event, musical, play, band performance, art show, black belt showcase, speech, […]

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Thought Factory Podcast #107 || Social Media Part 4: Guidelines for This Social Game

In episode #107, we discussed how social media can be a guessing game when it comes to parents and their children’s use or youth worker and their students in a ministry context.  At times it can feel like we are at battle with each other, taking shots from opposing sides instead of playing this game […]

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Let Your Yes be Yes and… [Your Longevity Yes be Yes]

“Let your yes mean yes, and your no mean no. Anything more than this comes from the evil one.”  Matthew 5:37 (CEB) We tend to forget about our “long-term yes’s” in terms of commitments we make.  It can seem like a “one time yes” in the moment, but when we commit to saying yes to […]

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Set Up Your Year up to Win

I have spent a lot of time in ministry spinning my wheels.  I don’t know if you can relate, but there have been seasons where it felt like I couldn’t work any harder, pray any longer, but the results were just not happening.  Now I know some people will frown because I just used the […]

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How to Move Students Into a Deeper Relationship With Jesus

Sometimes I think we think it’s only about the physical stuff we need to do with our students or for our students in order to move them into a deeper relationship with Jesus.  When, really, I think the initial step starts with us, as their small group leader, peer, or friend. Building that trusting, open, […]

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Posture Two: Life Over God

As some of you know, we are in a short blog series where we are discussing Skye Jenthani’s Faith Postures.  Which takes a good hard look at with young people are growing up and leaving the church they’ve been raised in.  There are four postures that Skye says the church uses to teach its people […]

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