over the next week or so, i’ll post slightly edited versions of the notes from our junior high pastors summit. they’re pretty fragmented for someone who wasn’t there, i’ll admit (they weren’t ‘taken’ for this purpose). but for those who would like to read, i’m excited to share them with you.
parts 1, 2 and 3 are the summaries of the morning scot mcknight spent with us. then, parts 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 are the pieces of our discussion. one bonus post will have the book recommendations from the group to one another (this is one of our traditions each year, to share two or three books we’d recommend to each other).
here’s part 7…
Ministry Around “Love God, Love Others” and how to know if we are achieving it
Alan R – measuring it by how kids love others, honor their parents, etc.
Cristin – JH tends to be concrete and egocentric, they have a hard time with concepts so shouldn’t we find ways to discuss these things and help them think outside the box – yet have that incorporated
Nate S – a lot of them are going from concrete to abstract
Marko – the real goal is that they know how to live out loving God and others on their own time on their own turf – now and beyond
How do we Get students to enter into a love God relationship?
Eric – because kids are abandoned we need to have a ministry that is more active and less like kids just coming to a church building
Alan – loving God is obeying is commandments – that is the action piece, the spiritual disciplines are pathways to help students comprehend how to love God
April – is there an element of catching up between loving God and loving others
Alan – learning to love God is very different for every student,
Marko – loving God is not just keeping his commandments, it’s not an if/then, keeping his commandments is a result of
– it’s important to teach students why it’s beneficial to obey
Steve – spiritual disciplines are a big part of it, a key word in loving God is Abide – that is not a JH word but it’s a key part – helping kids see they are cracked eikons
Judy – you can convey that in stories and when they can visually see how God has love his people
Andy – most of the JH don’t know who God is, we give them Spirt. Disc. And we talk about Jesus but we don’t teach them who God is –
Marko – the disciplines can lead to a deeper knowledge of God – if we have kids spend time in silence and let them hear from God – we need to leave room for God to do his work
Jim – do you go with the love God first? Is there a priority in having kids love God first before we teach them to love God, self, others and the world
Steve – Pg 162
Jim – Do we start with teaching kids to love God, self, others, world and then go from there in re: to thin slicing
Marko – it could lead to a misshapen gospel for kids
Eric- we need to not do it in a linear way – they are all intertwined, it’s a unified thing and we keep wanting to break it down
Marko – How do we know?
Kurt – is it important to know? It feels like it’s dangerous – measuring the tangible can be totally scued and we measure what we can’t see
Marko – it’s not a measurement in the way we’ve measured things before – are we “achieving” the goal of having kids love God and love others
Jeff – we have an idea because we look at the environment of our youth groups
Eric – what does it look like for a MS to be loved, markers are used: they know names, they invite them places, etc.
Marko – student leaders would give grades and be used as a starting point for discussion of the atmosphere of love
April – a lot of it comes from asking questions, it’s a feel, when it comes to planting seeds and not seeing results – is it just mindset on how you interact, teach JH
Kurt – even the markers can be off, certain kids will “feel” better if they are popular, etc, – this muddies the measurement
Nate R – had kids on 3×5 card write answers to certain questions so you get 300 stories, you will be amazed at the response
Nate S – how do you partner with parents and encourage what they’re encouraging while trying to teach this gospel
Jeff – let the parents know what we’re teaching, educate them as to what’s priority
Sean – learning from parents what they are teaching and help them with resources
3 thoughts on “jh summit notes, part 7”
I’m finding so many paralells between counseling chemically dependent sex offenders, murderers, and drug dealers and doing Junior High ministry. Let me explain …
When we do our assessment interviews, we are told to pay particular attention to the age when the client first started experimenting with drugs. There is a sense of “arrested development” that takes place emotionally (and cognitively). Coincidentally, most of our clients experiment with drugs before age 12. When I’m counseling, I’m often talking to a 12 year old mind in a 47 year old body.
But when I say, “Love God, Love Others.” Light-bulbs go on. Talking about the need to be restored and reconciled to God, self, others, and the world–they can grasp that. Rest assured everything you guys have been discussing here is having a secondary ripple effect in the lives of the 26 guys I’m counseling at the InnerChange Freedom Initiative (at the Lino Lakes Prison in MN).
Maybe YS should consider publishing a new line of Junior High materials: “The Adult Offender Editions”. Or would that be redundant?