Learning my lines . . .
. . . discovering what it means to follow Jesus, seeing my story swept up into his . . .

Author: Walt Mueller

Youth Ministry Focus. . . A Quick Thought. . .

A youth worker friend asked me a provocative question regarding how those of us in our youth ministry world spend our time. He was wondering if we are spending too much time on things that don’t matter, as opposed the much-needed time on the things that do matter. Good question. So here’s something to think...
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Friday Fodder. . . Storm Warnings. . .

Hurricane Florence has me thinking about something an old friend told me over 30 years ago. I was living in Miami and the Director of the National Hurricane Center became a friend. When a storm was on it’s way or pummeling the coastline, Dr. Neil Frank was a mainstay all over the television networks, keeping...
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Teens and Social Media. . . A Helpful Infographic. . .

Our friends over at Common Sense Media have released a new report on teens and social media: “Social Media, Social Life: Teens Reveal Their Experience.” It’s worth checking out. Take a look at the infographic below, and be sure to pass this on to parents and youth workers. . .
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Friday Fodder: Kids, Work, and Some Grocery Store Theology. . .

“Everybody’s working for the weekend. . . !” At least that’s what the band Loverboy had us singing way back in 1981. The sentiment captured a philosophy of life that existed long before the band sang it out, and it exists as a passionate commitment among so many in today’s world. Somehow, work has become...
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Parents, A New School Year, Extra-Curricular Busyness, and Prioritizing Faith. . .

This week, we released the September edition of our CPYU Monthly Parent Page. . . a subscription-based resource that hundreds of youth workers and churches provide to their parents as a tool to equip them to parent better by understanding how the Gospel speaks to parenting in today’s rapidly changing youth culture. (A subscription costs...
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Youth Ministry and Winging It. . . .

A youth worker posted this yesterday in a youth min group we are both part of on Facebook. . . “Visited a church while out of town this weekend. The Pastor expressed how glad he was that the Holy Spirit was allowed to move in that church. Then he said and I quote, ‘I can’t...
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Friday Fodder. . . Truth Or No Truth? What Are You Teaching? . . .

The contrast I encountered this morning was overwhelming and discouraging. On the one hand, I read today’s entry in J.I. Packer’s daily devotional Knowing God Through The Year.  Then, shortly thereafter, I logged on to Facebook and a post from a high profile and influential pastor popped up in my feed. The difference was stifling. ....
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Willow Creek. . . Be Soberly Reminded. . .

There are lessons to be learned here. This is not a time to simply shake our heads in disapproval. Disapproval is certainly warranted and necessary. But disapproval must be cloaked in a healthy and realistic understanding that, yes, there but for the grace of God go I. Nobody, I believe, sets out to pursue the...
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Friday Fodder. . . An Old Word To The Young. . .

Someone once wisely told me that “leaders are readers and readers are leaders.” I believe it. The wisest and most effective leaders I know are women and men who read regularly, passionately, and widely. In this age filled with technological distraction, it’s especially important that parents, pastors, and youth workers are unplugging and reading. ....
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Pornography And Kids. . .

One of the most difficult and humbling things I get to do is talk to kids about the cultural scourge of pornography. That’s what I’ll be doing tomorrow morning with a group of 300 kids at a camp in Massachusetts. For several days now I’ve been asking the Lord to give me knowledge, words, wisdom,...
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Friday Fodder. . . I Love You Enough To Tell You The Truth. . .

One of the most difficult aspects of life in the Body of Christ. . . yet one of the most necessary for our flourishing. . . is loving confrontation. We all need it. When I am derailed or on a quick path to derailment, I need people who love me enough to call me out...
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Friday Fodder. . . Something To Think About. . .

My head tends to be a jumble of stuff. It’s a changing mixture that combines things I’ve read, seen, and heard in a mix that I continually pray prompts thinking, being, and ministering in ways that bring glory to God and result in Kingdom advancement. In an effort to not only sort out what’s in...
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Mike Trout, Youth Ministry, And The Marketing Of Self. . . .

Televised sports found its way onto my agenda last night, with me engaging in a flip-fest between the MLB All-Star Game, the Tour De France, and Cornhole (yes. . . Cornhole! . . . televised now as a sport on ESPN!). While tuned to the MLB All-Star Game I saw the Angels’ Mike Trout hit...
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A Letter to Senior Pastors. . . .

Dear Pastor, I’ve asked your youthworker and your students’ parents to forward this letter on to you. It’s about the kids in your congregation and the powerful role that you play as their pastor in their spiritual nurture. I know that you’ve got teenagers sitting in your congregation every week. From your vantage point up...
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Friday Fodder. . . Something To Think About. . .

My head tends to be a jumble of stuff. It’s a changing mixture that combines things I’ve read, seen, and heard in a mix that I continually pray prompts thinking, being, and ministering in ways that bring glory to God and result in Kingdom advancement. In an effort to not only sort out what’s in...
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Teens and Anxiety. . . Some Helpful Words. . .

Ever feel like this? . . . Apparently anxiety was a problem way back when Time Magazine ran this cover in 1961. The covered featured the now-familiar Edvard Munch painting known as “The Scream.” Interestingly enough, Munch painted this way back in 1893. I guess that proves that paralyzing and scream-inducing anxiety has been around...
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Friday Fodder. . . Something To Ponder. . .

My head tends to be a jumble of stuff. It’s a changing mixture that combines things I’ve read, seen, and heard in a mix that I continually pray prompts thinking, being, and ministering in ways that bring glory to God and result in Kingdom advancement. In an effort to not only sort out what’s in...
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Why Youth Ministry Shouldn’t Be The Greatest Show On Earth. . .

The truth is that I was jealous. I was convinced that there was no way I could compete. Even worse, I believed there was a competition. I was a young youth worker doing ministry in a suburban church during the 1980s, a decade marked by excess and greed. I realize now that I had allowed...
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Parenting: What Did You Expect?!?

It couldn’t have come fast enough. . . the birth of our first child, that is. Thirty-five years ago we learned that “we” were pregnant. As the anticipation built as fast as my wife’s belly grew, I spent countless nights laying awake and pondering the joy that was to be ours when our daughter would...
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Chris Pratt. . . I See What You Did There. . .

I’ve watched it several times now. Several of my friends thought enough of it to message it to me. It’s Chris Pratt’s gone-viral acceptance speech upon receiving The Generation Award at the MTV Movie and TV Awards the other night. Pratt took the occasion to speak “Nine Rules From Chris Pratt” to the next generation....
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