Tag Archives: Youth

Q&P

What a powerful night it has been. I went into our youth group gathering tonight with no expectations but I came out with witnessing so much and experience the Spirit of God in such a tangible way. 

After service our youth pastor gathered the youth leadership team and me together for a meeting. A meeting that called us into prayers of compassion and intercession. Witnessing my younger brothers and sisters heart truly break for something and crying out to God really moved my heart. Tonight was affirmation once more that the body of Christ is a body that loves and prays, that reaches out to the Father in times of need together. 

After prayer we went into intimate and honest conversations on salvation. Multiple leaders were bold to ask hard questions to seek out answers and guidance. It was a beautiful sight to see them hungry and having desire to know more and be vulnerable to share their questions and doubts. 

Nights like these where we can ask questions and pray together really mean a lot to me. I feel like this is why God calls us to be a body. To be there for eachother and to run to God with one another.

I saw God today. 

Did you?

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COME TOGETHER 

For the last few years now annually our church and two other church youth groups come together for a praise night and that was tonight. I had plans that went longer than expected before the praise night so I ended being really late. But when I walked into the sanctuary I was taken back to see so many kids there. 

The time of worship really blessed me. I had a proud older brother type moment seeing two of my youth girls who I’ve known almost all there life now grown leading worship. In that moment, being led by them in worship, I saw seeds planted in their hearts from many years ago blossom into fruit. 

What else truly blessed me was hearing how loud the congregation was in worship. These kids singing out their hearts overpowered the praise team. It was extremely powerful witnessing children of God from different churches, backgrounds and denominations joining hearts and voice to bring praise to the Lord. 

The reality is we have differences amongst the churches. Different styles and ways in which we worship, preach etc. but to me seeing diversity in worship is beautiful. Witnessing multiple shades come together to paint a beautiful picture before the Lord. 

I saw God today. 

Did you?

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MATURING FAITH

It was quite challenging this past fall sending off some of our youth students to college. But with it being the start of winter break for most colleges, a handful of them came back to Cincinnati tonight. So we had a little reunion and I had the opportunity to hangout with some of them and catch up on what’s been going on in their lives and how their first semester of college has been.

It was such a blessing to hear their stories and witness what God has been doing in their hearts these past few months. It still blows my mind that they are in college now and in new chapters of their lives. But with that it’s obvious that they are in new chapters of faith.

This class is dear to my heart because I’ve known most of them for almost all my life. I’ve seen them grow through the years and have had the privilege to grow with them. Ironically we are now all in similar life stages since I’m still in college too. Therefore it’s awesome that we are able to relate on some things we haven’t been able to in the past.

As I was talking with them it was so obvious that they are all maturing. Maturing in life, academics and faith. God is taking each one of them on a new journey, even though for some it’s not the easiest, but what’s evident is that they are all growing and taking new steps in discovering what it means to be children of God.

One of my biggest fears in ministry and especially with youth group is for someone to go off to college and fall away from church. I am thankful that each individual I talked to tonight is still persistent in their walks of faith and that they are taking ownership of their faith.

I saw God today.

Did you?

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OPEN TO TALK

It’s been an exhausting but overall joy filled Sunday. It was one of those days where I took a step back and realized once again how thankful I am for everyone I am surrounded by every Sunday at church. There was a particular moment that truly was a blessing.

After the first service I was in the cafeteria having fellowship with some people when one of my youth girls asked if we could talk. So we went into my office before youth group and she started to share things that were on her heart. It’s been awhile since I’ve had a real sit down conversation wth her so it was really good to hear what’s been on her heart and her relationship with God. It was evident that God was truly doing something within and really doing His works.

What I was really thankful for was that she chose me to talk to. Out of all the people at our church she wanted to hear what I had to say and my input. For some people in pastoral positions this isn’t a big deal, but for me every time I get an opportunity like this I’m extremely blessed and thankful. Thankful that God wants to use me and speak through me to His children.

Ultimately I know I am unworthy and I know that I lack. At times I don’t have the right things to say. But even in the midst of that God chooses to work through my brokenness to shine His light and that I am forever thankful for.

I saw God today.

Did you?

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ONLY YOU

This past week my mind has been running nonstop. Constantly have things I’m thinking about that I need to get done. There hasn’t been a day I went to sleep before 5am. The end of this semester is really starting to get the best of me.

Today I told myself I will take time off from studies in the day so I can get some errands done and hopefully find rest doing so. That wasn’t the case. While I was doing other things school was still on my mind. It was like that all the way up until church.

To be honest I was extremely unmotivated to go to youth group tonight. I even contemplated skipping out and getting some possible rest before doing more work tonight, but I really felt convicted so I went.

For the whole first half I was extremely disctracted. It was hard for me to think about anything other than the work I had to do afterwards. Then we entered into a time of worship and that’s when everything changed.

I wasn’t intentional but something just clicked within me. In an instance my heart changed and my mind was freed. The only thing I could think about was God. I escaped from all my pre-existing thoughts and set my eyes upon God and God only. I don’t know how it happened so easily but it did.

The Holy Spirit truly moved and instilled in me a heart of worship. In that moment the only thing I desired was to sing from the top of my lungs and praise God. To be in His presence and to not care about everything that was going on in my head but rather focus on what God was trying to do in my heart.

Tonight I was reminded once again the importance of coming back to the heart of worship. Coming to the feet of Jesus and laying everything else aside. To take a moment and just gaze upon the Father and give Him what I can. Worship is a necessity.

I saw God today.

Did you?

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HEARD THE HEART

A few days ago I got a call in the middle of the night from one of my youth boys. It was evident that something was really heavy on his heart and he needed someone to talk to. It was a blessing that God gave me that opportunity to use me to speak truth and affirmation into his heart at a time of need.

On the phone that night told me he couldn’t come to youth group tonight, but surprisingly enough he made it out. He rearranged his schedule so he could make it tonight. It truly put a smile on my face to know that he is wanting to take the right steps in faith to overcome his current battle.

During our time of worship I couldn’t help but listen to him cry out to God. It wasn’t his voice I heard tonight but his heart. He came tonight to give it all to God, reach out for Him and be intentional in pursuing God the Father. It was a blessing to have the privilege to witness intimacy arise between God and His child.

I saw God today.

Did you?

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LOVE YOURSELF 

I had the blessed opportunity to lead the youth service tonight cause our youth pastor is out of town. The moment he asked me to lead I knew exactly what I wanted to do and I was filled with excitement since yesterday. So this past Wednesday for Refresh we did an encouragement circle type of thing where everyone would go around and speak life into each other but the twist was that the individual had to encourage themselves too. When we did that on Wednesday I thought it would be great to do with the youth also, and of course perfect timing God gave opened the door.

The group tonight was awesome because we had a very diverse group. A handful of 7th graders who have only been in youth group for a few months now, a new member and our upperclassmen too.

Before we did the activity I had the kids go on their own and spend intimate time with God to ask Him for His eyes to see themselves with. So they can see the beauty, gifts and strengths within them. Then we got back together in a circle and shared as well as encouraged eachother.

I know that in their age they go through a lot of identity struggle, self doubt and self pity. So it was a true blessing to witness these kids speak life into themselves and to realize how beautiful God has created them to be. The reality is, it’s pretty easy to be loved at times by others but the true challenge is to love yourself, so to see these kids pour love into their own hearts was amazing. To see them discover the treasures God has placed in their hearts was priceless.

I saw God today.

Did you?

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ESCAPE THE ROOM

In the last couple months we formed our new youth group leadership team for the year. To start things off we decided to have a fellowship night with them. We had dinner and then went to Escape The Room Challenge. It was one amazing experience filled with fun and intensity. We had one hour to escape from a locked room and we succeeded with only 1.5 seconds to spare. It was extremely challenging but we were able to accomplish it through team work.


Through the whole time in the room I realized how different each one of us are. We all have different skill sets, perspectives and ways of thinking. But when our differences came together unified we were able to overcome the challenges.

In the same way all of us have different functions and abilities but when we come together as one body we are able to serve God’s kingdom. God uses our differences to use us as a whole. With brothers and sisters by your side things that seem impossible can be achieved.

I saw God today.

Did you?

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PRAYERS OF A PARENT 

Tonight before youth group we had our first ever PTA prayer gathering. We thought it would be a great idea to start meeting together with the parents once a month to pray for our youth group and share prayer requests we have for the kids. Being our first one and also with it being Labor Day weekend many parents couldn’t come out but God still showed up.

We began with worship and then went around sharing prayer points we wanted to pray together for. It was great hearing the insight of the parents and seeing their true cares and compassion for not just their kids but the youth group as a whole.

After discussing what we need to pray for we began to pray together with our voices. I couldn’t help but take a step back and listen to these parents hearts crying out to God. Lifting everything to Him with a hunger and desperation.

I was able to witness first hand how amazing parents of faith are. To see their genuine care and love for the kids, all of the kids like they are their own. I believe through them I got a glimpse of God the Father. Seeing their hearts for the kids put in perspective how much more our Father God loves us. Just like these parents were crying out for their children I believe God does that times a hundred for us.

I saw God today.

Did you?

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THE UNEXPECTED EXPECTED 

There is a girl in youth group that I have been able to witness grow in the past few years she has been in our community. Just like everyone else in the group she really is something special. The biggest thing that shines about her is her heart of worship.

She has the voice that pierces through any loud room. That voice becomes radiant during worship. She sings not with just words but from the cries of her heart because she genuinely loves God. She is the type to not care at all about how she sounds and only cares about giving praise to God.

But the thing about her is that her circumstances aren’t always the greatest which prohibits her from being able to come out to church all the time. Some may use her attendance as a reason to judge her faith but I don’t and haven’t at all. Why? Because I know her genuine heart for God. I have always confidently known that God will use that heart in amazing ways and today was a moment when that was revealed.

Even though she is a loud and outgoing person she isn’t the type to be that way in front of a large crowd. She is the type that serves in the background but God chose her today to use her in the foreground.

Today she joined the praise team for our first service as a vocalist. Many probably didn’t expect that but to be honest I knew this was going to happen. I knew God wanted to use that heart of worship to spread this heart to others. I was beyond blessed to see her being used today for the kingdom. To witness her heart being poured out in worship and leading us in that heart.

I saw God today.

Did you?

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