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Dangerous Dating
When Did Dating Become a Full Contact Sport?
David R. Smith

Shoshana Roberts, an aspiring actress, recently captured the attention of the nation when she posted an online video documenting the “cat calling” she experienced in just one day traipsing around New York City.

Turns out, that can be pretty mild stuff compared to what teens do...
JONATHAN'S BLOG: CONTEST- What are your top three?
A few weeks ago I was sitting with a group of youth workers and one of them asked me, “What are the top three youth ministry books you’d recommend we read, if we could only buy three?”

Great question.

This one caused me to pause for a few moments, after all, I’ve read a variety of insightful books that have helped me through my years of youth ministry (that lot in the picture are a pretty good bunch). But which three have proved foundational?

I’ll list the three books I shared with those youth workers that evening, and then I’ll ask you the same. What three youth ministry books have been the most influential and foundational for your ministry? (I’ll even make this a contest—chime in with a comment below sharing your top three and I’ll randomly choose three people as winners next week and they get their choice of any of my books!)

  1. Purpose Driven Youth Ministry, Doug Fields—this book forces youth workers to seek the “why” behind the ministry methods they use. No more Wednesday nights because “We’ve always done Wednesday nights.” What is your purpose behind Wednesday nights? Who will you reach? How? I first read this book before I knew Doug, in fact, before I even knew “of” Doug. I was amazed with its vision and practicality. If you haven’t read it, grab a copy now. Fantastic book! Still as relevant today as the day it was written.

  2. Connect, Jonathan McKee—this book not only lays out the Biblical groundwork for relational ministry, it provides the reader with tools to connect with the different types of young people they’ll encounter in today’s world of growing technological isolation. I’m passionate about this book because I’m passionate about teaching youth workers to recognize six types of kids (you probably have seen the video on YouTube), and seek out venues that put them in contact with all of them. This is the same book that provides youth workers with the stickynote training, a tool that helps us stay accountable to outreach and discipleship in our community. Be sure and grab this one if you missed it.

  3. Dare 2 Share, Greg Stier—maybe it’s the fact that my first 10 years of youth ministry were on the front lines in campus ministry. Maybe it’s the fact that this book is still practical in my adult life sharing my faith with my neighbors and relatives. Maybe it’s the fact that Greg’s passion to share the Gospel is so contagious, it bleeds from the pages and compels you to “always be prepared to give an answer” as well as living a life where people “ask you to give a reason for the hope within you.” (I Peter 3:15-18). This book is truly a field guide for sharing your faith, even providing sections on how to share with people from different religions. Practical, practical, practical. Get this book.


So what about you? What youth ministry books were the most practical and influential… and why?

Don’t forget the contest—chime in with a comment below sharing your top three and I’ll randomly choose three people as winners next week and they get their choice of any of my books!
I WANT TO READ MORE

Season 5, Episode 6, Consumed
“I’m trying.” It’s the phrase Carol and Daryl kept saying in this episode. And who can blame them. In a world with no rules, no moral code, and at times… no hope… survivors probably wonder, why even try? That’s the
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CAMPUS MINISTRY CORNER: The Power of Coming Together
Last weekend I was in a small town outside of Minneapolis where I witnessed something I rarely see in the world of youth ministry. I saw a network of 8 youth workers from different ministries come together to share ideas and do ministry together.

I almost pinched myself. A Lutheran, a Baptist, a Methodist, someone from the Covenant church and a Campus Life leader were drinking coffee together (sounds like a joke, right?) Yes, it’s not the first time I’ve seen it, but let’s just say I don’t see it often.

The youth ministry buzzword at hand here is called Networking. Faith leaders coming together to encourage each other, support one another and talk ministry. It’s something that doesn’t happen as often as it should.

I know, because I fly into about 30 cities a year to speak at conferences and events. In the majority of the cities I’ll sit down at dinner with a youth pastor and begin talking ministry. I always ask, “Do you know the youth pastor at the big white church I passed two blocks South? What about the church two blocks east across the park?”

4 out of 5 times the answer is, “No.”

“I’ve just been really busy. I’ve been trying to get things in motion here first, then I intend to start networking.”

Sadly, it rarely happens.

This small network outside of Minneapolis not only meets regularly, they run a weekly campus ministry together. Eight churches and Campus Life combine efforts to feed 400 to 450 kids weekly at the local high school. One of the churches is strategically located across the street from the school. Every Thursday, students have the option of going “to church” for lunch. They eat, they have fun, and they hear a little truth from God’s word.

The eight churches take turns providing the lunch, and all the churches provide leaders who interact with the kids each week.

None of the churches could do it on their own. But eight churches standing together… stronger than the Ecclesiastes 4 cord of three strands!

What might you accomplish if you came together like this?

What’s stopping you from stopping by that church down the street and inviting the youth worker to lunch this week?

JONATHAN DIVES INTO NETWORKING EVEN DEEPER IN THIS FREE TRAINING TOOLS ARTICLE: NETWORKING, VITAL… YET IGNORED

WHAT'S NEW ON THE SITE
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Outreach Resource of the Week RSS Feed
OUTREACH RESOURCE OF THE WEEK
Patch Adams

From time to time, all of us get frustrated with God. Your students are no exception. If some of your teens are currently facing that dilemma, check out this awesome resource from our MOVIE CLIP DISCUSSIONS page.

 

Movie Clip: Frustrated with God
Patch Adams is a film based on the true story of Hunter “Patch” Adams, a non-conformist doctor who 


Spiritual Growth Resource of the Week RSS Feed
SPIRITUAL GROWTH RESOURCE OF THE WEEK
What Good is Revenge?

Alright, the first arctic blasts have hit us, so it’s the perfect time to use this terrific resource from our SPIRITUAL GROWTH AGENDAS page. It will help your teenagers avoid seeking revenge.


Discussion Starter: YouTube Videos of Revenge 
This is pretty simple to pull off, and will provide laughter and a great way to make your point. Just 


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