I would love to meet up with you at the LTC conference in December. Just let me know if your family decides to go. :)By the way, I can't wait to see this DVD. I think it's going to be excellent.Christa...Country Hearts
I can see the point of this video, but honestly I love that my kids get to go to Sunday School during the sermon. One reason why we are going to this church is because they are serious about kids not falling away and helping to grow their faith through serious bible study. I'm very impressed by the number of college-age kids I see every Sunday. I think having an effective youth ministry is possible, but they have to be serious about discipleship, holiness and personal accountability. It isn't about entertaining the kids. That's my two cents :)
Jackie,You are blessed to be in a church that has an ffective youth ministry. Being a pastor's wife, now a Chaplain's wive, and a product of youth ministries myself, I know that it is not only the teachers and youth ministers that have an effect, it is the children they are exposed to so often. I remember when my oldest daughter went to VBS one year at a church near us. They had a great program, the teacher was wonderful, but just that small interaction with some of the children had her coming home with an attitude that was so uncharacteristic of her. She came away with Bible songs and such, but not with loving Jesus. She got the head knowledge as we would say, but it didn't reach her heart. We have found in our family the greatest change that has come about in our own children's lives is having them with us, with us being their main disciplers, with them watching us worship. I will say, however, Sunday school done correctly is probably one of the areas where you could have some good results. This is mainly about children in children's church and the many activities youth go on (older) apart from their parents. Have a blessed day!
The youth group I went to as a teenager was awful. I'd rather my kids not to go to youth group if it was going to be like that. I think it can be done correctly and effectively, but parents have to be extremely discerning and in touch with what is going on in a youth group. Volunteering, would be one way to know. But, yes, I think entertainment driven ministry is a recipe for disaster and limited peer time is necessary. That is one reason I homeschool. Great topic!
This is such an interesting topic and dear to my heart as my oldest son has just joined a youth group at our church. We have had the kind of youth group before that was "of the world". The new youth pastor that we have, is all about holy living. It is amazing to watch him as he truly encourages families to stay families and for parental involvement to happen. He has very strict guide lines and rules when it comes to modesty, technology (cell phones, games, ect.) He treats them as adults and preaches to them as such. There is no watering down of the Word. I am very excited to see how he is motivated to teach our children that it is all about serving others, not themselves. Even though we have taught all of these things within our home. I believe it is being reinforced every Sunday night. I love being involved and watching Josh get to be with friends that have the same moral values that we do. To say all youth ministry is not OK, is bordering on legalism. Our church sought the Lord on this issue and prayed for years before God sent this young man and his wife to us. I'm just saying...we need to be careful. (Remember, I went to the same youth group Jackie did. It was AWFUL!) I truly know the difference and am praising God that we have a youth pastor that values the same things we hold dear as a family. He is a great tool, and I have told him so several times.
Stacie,I agree with you. To say all youth ministries are wrong is legalism. And, if you listen to most of those that sound the alarm on youth ministries, they will say this is for the majority of youth ministries. The ones that are not so are those that involve parents in the teaching, come alongside them in the discipleship of their children and are operating from a Biblical standpoint by not watering down the Word. You can praise the Lord that you are fortunate enough to be at a church that provides that. Unfortunately, most churches do not. I know, I have been in quite a few churches, and none of them had youth ministries that I would put my children in. And, I became more wordly because of the youth ministries I was involved with as a young girl. The key is to pray and ask God's discernment about where He wants our children rather than just placing them in various so-called ministries just because they are available and "everyone" else is doing it. And finally, which should really be first and foremost, does it line up with scripture? If we do not have a basis for it in the Word of God, then why do we do it? This is something the Lord continues to bring home to me. What is my motivation for this or that? Sola Scriptura ~ Scripture alone is our guide. May the Lord continue to bless you and your family as you are diligently training your children. Blessings, JackieBlessings,Jackie
Great topic! Good points from everyone! I, too, see legalism from the family-integrated people. It seems to me they ARE a denomination, and the one we were in for several months was made up of young couples with 4-6 children, more on the way, and homeschooling to boot. I'm not sure they would admit they demand their members to homeschool, but there is strong urging to.We homeschool, have 2 children, and were "older" when we married. I didn't see room for widows, blue hairs, singles, or Christian families who public school. With that said, we haven't found another church that doesn't have an entertainment-driven youth group, or a church that promotes family-togetherness. They all do rock music. Currently, we are attending the base chapel (yeah for chaplains!) where there are no other youth but ours. Our son hates it, but our daughter is starting to get it. I would desire a discipleship youth group for them, just to fellowship with other like-minded youth.
Lois,The family-integrated church is sort of like a denomination. I have been to several. I feel any church can border on legalism because we all can as Christians individually. It seems the churches have a problem with either being legalistic...or too permissive. The last FIC we attended had a mix of both homeschoolers and public schooled children. I have never felt that it was a must to homeschool...I always felt that those that had the family integrated mindset were already people that wanted to have their children in close discipleship and they chose to homeschool for those reasons. I have friends in both arenas and love them all. Having said all that...we are of the family integrated mindset, but we have also left the FIC we were in because it was not the right fit for us, for reasons I will not go into. We are now attending a baptist church that has a youth group (that is when my husband is not preaching on post). Our children do not take part, but we feel welcomed and loved by the members. And we are the ONLY homeschoolers in the church! We are reformed in our theology, but our current pastor is not...but he loves the Lord and lives that lifestyle among His people. We must not compromise our convictions and what God has called us to do...but we must also realize that there are going to be ALL types of Christians in heaven and we are not showing the love of Christ when we exclude brothers and sisters because we don't agree on non-essential points. I am so glad the Lord takes me right where and I am and loves me with all my faults and hang-ups! Blessings to you my dear friend, jackie
What a great post and ALL those comments!! I enjoyed reading through them. Thank you for posting Jackie! I shared the clip with my husband a few days ago (didn't have time to comment then)...it is good "food for thought". As for the "integrated" and "segregated" ministry...such a hot button issue! I agree with you...everything we do must line up with Scripture and be based solely in God's Word. THAT is where we get our moorings and direction. What an incredible task it is to raise the next generation for the LORD...how wonderful that HE promises to give the wisdom we need as we seek HIM for it! Where would we be without HIM?We, like you, are Reformed in our theology and are at a church that isn't. The people are lovely and welcoming. It is difficult to find *everything* in one location. The LORD faithfully leads us all along and teaches us...how wonderful it is to belong to HIM!Blessings to you Jackie!In Him,Camille
One more thing, as I re-read my disjointed post! I do agree with the integrated principles, and would like to try another FIC sometime. If there was a reformed church anywhere near us, I would like to attend. It was just the one we were in was southern Baptist, but was using the Westminster catechism, (a strange contradiction to me), KJ ONLY (almost a salvation issue with the pastor) and child discipline that involves the rod. (I could never justify punishing a small child for wiggling in church.) The concept of the father being prophet, priest and king absolutely is not scriptural, because Paul said there is no male/female etc. but all are one in Christ. My husband saw a spiritual dictatorship coming, so we withdrew.I agree wholeheartedly with you about churches today being too legalistic, or too permissive. And a few weeks ago, in the chapel, a young airman sang for special music. He read a passage from Matthew, and then from the Book of Mormon. The chaplain (of Pentecostal persuasion)was taken by surprise, but recovered nicely. We talked about it at home, and my son (who hates attending the chapel) said, "Well, even as a Mormon, doesn't he have the right to be at the chapel?" My husband has told our children that we are at the chapel to serve and minister, not to get something.That's more than "one thing" isn't it? Sorry for using your blog to rant. It just saddens me when Christ's body is so disunified. Thank you for your servant's heart, Jackie. Your blog really ministers to me.
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