The Source for Youth Ministry
Jonathan's Resource Ezine

Weekly Resources, Ideas and Articles from The Source for Youth Ministry
Tuesday, March 20, 2007

In This Issue

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Two Discussions from Jonathan's Popular New Book: Try out these two discussions from Jonathan and Fred's new discussion starter book using questions about current slanguage

Don't miss Youth Specialties #1 Bestseller right now on their new

You know that we at THE SOURCE love to give you a ton of free resources. And on occasion we like to point you toward something we think is worth buying. We're doing both this week by exclusively giving our EZINE subscribers two different discussions out of YS's hit new slanguage book. (Let's just say that we know one of the authors!) ;)

What's a Fo' Sheezy? Don't miss this one. (it's only $4.99) Fred Lynch, The Source Slang Dictionary editor, and Jonathan McKee just finished a new book What's a Fo' Sheezy. Much like the books Would You Rather, or Unfinished Sentences, this book has more than 300 Questions to get teenagers talking, laughing and thinking. These questions are perfect for small groups or even casual hang out times.

The book is recommended by Chap Clark, Josh McDowell, Chris Hill, Walt Mueller, Greg Stier, Efrem Smith, Les Christie, Larry Acosta... and more. It's a valuable resource that you're going to find yourself using again and again.

And some of you might not know, but we're doing this one a little differently. We're making this one so you can receive it in just 5 minutes! That's right... it's an e-book. WAIT! Don't be too quick to judge if you're the type that wants to hold it "in your hand." Think about this for a second. One: because it's an e-book, we're able to sell it to you for just under $5. Two: this book is a discussion starter book. And this e-format allows you to print out exactly the discussions you want, when you want them. If you're a youth worker, you can cut and paste them to your volunteers. You can print this stuff out in bite size pieces. Check it out, you won't be disappointed!


Speaker and Author Greg Stier says it well:
    "What's a Fo' Sheezy? is an easy-to-use, fun, and
    effective tool for understanding the language of
    today's youth culture. More than that, it's a year's
    supply of relevant discussion-starting questions to get
    kids talking. Jonathan and Fred do an amazing job at
    presenting a crash course on ?slanguage' and give youth
    leaders opportunities to connect with their students on
    a whole new level."

    -Greg Stier, author, Dare 2 Share: A Field Guide to Sharing
    Your Faith; president-founder, Dare 2 Share Ministries

CLICK HERE to find out more about this fantastic new resource and hear what others are already saying!


    A) n. a school cafeteria: "Meet you at the grill at lunchtime."

    B) n. a person's teeth or smile: "Man, you better shut up, or I'll bust your grill!"

    C) v. to study or rehearse: "Wait 'til I'm done grilling my math."

    D) adj. huge like an ape; enormous, usually muscular

    B) n. a person's teeth or smile: "Man, you better shut up, or I'll bust your grill!"

Fox's Teen Choice Awards has a category each year titled "Choice Grill," which someone is awarded for having the best teeth...usually decorated with gold, diamonds, and other bling-bling. Gold dental fixtures are popular within hip-hop culture, but they were originally intended for dental restoration, not for fashion. Grills are also known as fronts, golds, caps, shines, and pullout. In Texas several school districts banned removable grills on the basis of etiquette and safety.

  1. Would you rather see someone with white perfect teeth or teeth covered in bling-bling?

  2. If you could spend an unlimited budget on your teeth (including dentistry, orthodontics, and bling-bling), what would you do to them?

  3. Americans seemed much more obsessed with their teeth than people in many other countries. Do you think people with crooked teeth should get braces?

  4. Do you think people with big noses should get plastic surgery if they want to? What about implants and other cosmetic surgeries?

  5. We've seen certain celebrities get so much facial surgery that they look straight-up weird. Most people agree that's way too much. On the other hand, most people believe braces for your teeth are okay. So where's the line on how far we should go to change our looks?

  6. In the Bible Paul talks to us about where our focus should be: "For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake"
    (2 Corinthians 4:5).

  7. Describe people who preach themselves. Where is their focus?

  8. Where should our focus be?

  9. If our focus should be pointing to Christ, how much should we be obsessed with our looks?

    A) adj. empty, vacant

    B) adv. extremely, very, or exceptionally: "That dog was holla big!"

    C) v. to contact someone, to communicate with someone, usually via phone or e-mail: "Hey, don't forget to holla back, young'n'."

    D) n. a pregnant yak

    C) v. to contact someone, to communicate with someone, usually via phone or e-mail: "Hey, don't forget to holla back, young'n'."

  1. What is your choice communication method? (e.g., in person, texting, chat rooms, phone, etc.)

  2. How much time do you spend talking, chatting, texting-all of the above-with your friends each day?

  3. Why do you think teenagers love talking, chatting, etc., so much?

  4. The Bible says we were created in God's image. Do you believe God enjoys communicating with us?

  5. How do we communicate with God?

  6. How does God communicate with us?

    The Bible says, "The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth" (Psalm 145:18).

  7. This verse says God is near all who call on him "in truth." Another translation says, "All who pray and mean it" (The Message). What does God require of us when we talk to him? Is this fair?

  8. What's one way you can be truthful with God?

This is just a SAMPLE of 52 different
discussions from slanguage


Easter Resources and Ideas: Check out complete talks, activities, and Movie Clip Discussions

Easter arrives soon, and we've got a bunch of free resources and ideas on our web site for you!

Where do you look when a certain holiday is coming? Try our HOLIDAY IDEAS page. Just pop on our web site, look over at our left hand side bar menu and you'll see the words HOLIDAY IDEAS under the FREE RESOURCES & IDEAS section. Click on HOLIDAY IDEAS, and then scroll down to where it says EASTER. You'll see a ton of free resources and ideas.

Here's just some of the resources and ideas you'll see on our HOLIDAY IDEAS page:

Spiritual Growth Agendas:
Movie Clip Discusssion:

Movie Reviews: Jonathan and Todd banter about THE ULTIMATE GIFT in the theatres and THE PRESTIGE for rent. They also review ERAGON, CASINO ROYALE, 300, ZODIAC and WILD HOGS

Jonathan and Todd have added quite a few reviews to our MOVIE REVIEW page lately. Take a peek at their "2 cents" about these recent theatrical releases and rentals


The Ultimate Gift (3/9/2007)

Rated PG for thematic elements, some violence and language.

Directed by Michael O. Sajbel (One Night with the King)

Staring Drew Fuller, James Garner, Brian Dennehy, Abigail Breslin and Ali Hillis

Jonthan's Rating: Rental

Todd's Rating: Rental

A great film to watch with the whole family.

Based on the best-selling book by Jim Stovall, The Ultimate Gift is the compelling story of one man's journey to discover the things that are so much more valuable than money.

The film is brought to us by Michael O. Sajbel. Yes, Michael isn't James Cameron, but he's getting his feet wet in Hollywood and is starting to bring us some decent (not "Wow!"... just decent) clean family entertainment.

The movie basically opens at Howard "Red" Stevens' (James Garner) funeral. Grandson, trust fund brat, and all around jerk, Jason (Drew Fuller) arrives late and loud, disrupting the service as his muscle car rumbles through the cemetery.

At the reading of the will, Jason and the rest of his greedy and dysfunctional family eagerly wait to hear what Red has left them (like a scene out of John Grisham's book The Testament). After each family member is informed of their inheritance, they are asked to leave. They do just that, disgusted, believing they deserved more. Finally Jason is called into the empty room and given a DVD with a message from his late grandfather.

Jason seems skeptical that "Grandpa Red" would have left him anything... but he is curious. After all, Grandpa had a butt-load of money. But instead of money, Jason's inheritance is a well-devised plan for him to experience a crash course on life. Twelve "gifts," each forcing Jason out of the "spoiled brat" life he knew so well and into the life that will change him and those around him forever.

The Ultimate Gift is a powerful message about learning that, as one tag line said, "some things are worth more than money."

Todd's Word: Even in this family drama, there are plenty of lighthearted moments that made me laugh- like Gus (Brian Dennehy) waking Jason up with a cattle prod, or Jason and a homeless man arguing over a park bench.

Jonathan's Word: It was funny. I watched it with my whole family and it had us laughing throughout. I think that a lot of the humor in the film was brought by the character of the little girl Emily, played by Abigail Breslin (Best Supporting Actress nominee for Little Miss Sunshine this year). She was wonderful as usual, always bringing a smile. (I will forever remember her as the little girl in Signs, "There's a monster outside my room, can I have a glass of water?") Some of her lines in this film were classic.


"300" (released 3/9/2007)

Rated R for graphic battle sequences throughout, some sexuality and nudity.

Directed by Zack Snyder (Dawn of the Dead-2004)

Staring Gerard Butler, Lena Headey, Dominick West, David Wenham

Todd's Rating: Theatre Worthy

I can't remember when I first saw the trailer for 300 but I know it was awhile ago and I watched it 4 times. I could not wait for its release. So when it came time to finally see it, I got to the theater an hour and a half before show time and the line was already ridiculously long. In 15 minutes, the line doubled and as each minute passed, the line grew and so did my excitement. A little after 7:00 the movie started and for the next 2 hours, I was completely blown away.

300 is an amazing movie that is based on Frank Miller's graphic novel, which is based on the historic Battle of Thermopylae in 480 B.C. In this famous battle, King Leonidas of Sparta led 300 of his finest soldiers against the advancing King Xerxes and his enormous Persian army. It was this battle that is said to have inspired all of Greece to band together against the Persians, and helped usher in the world's first democracy. In 300 this old story is narrated by one of the brave solders who tells a beautiful story of a horrific battle and the King who led them.


Zodiac (3/2/07)

Rated R for some strong killings, language, drug material and brief sexual images.

Directed by David Fincher (Panic Room, Fight Club, Se7en...)

Staring Jake Gyllenhaal, Mark Ruffalo, Anthony Edwards, Robert Downey Jr., Brian Cox...

Jonthan's Rating: Theatre Worthy

Most people over 35 probably remember hearing about the Zodiac killer in the news during the 60's and the 70's. I do... because it was in my city.

I was born in the Bay area of California in the early 70's. Most of the killings happened within an hour of my house. The Zodiac killer was never found... and this movie is the true story (based on the books by Robert Graysmith) of the murders and those that tried to capture him.

Zodiac was a fantastic film, an authentic glimpse of these true life events. The cast is filled with talent and performances were above par. The attention to detail is mind-boggling. The cars, buildings and wardrobe are spot on. The film offers some fun glimpses at San Francisco as it grew in the 70's including a time lapse shot of the Transamerica Building being built.

I have to give a shout out to the director David Fincher. David has a "Hitchcockian" eye that cares about camera movement and position. Some people won't notice this consciously, but Fincher's perspectives help the film's pace and flow.



Eragon (12/19/2006)

Rated PG for fantasy violence, intense battle sequences and some frightening images.

Directed by Stefen Fangmeier

Starring Jeremy Irons, John Malkovich, (voice of) Rachel Weicz

Jonthan's Rating: Rental

A fun adventure... but don't fool yourself, it's no Lord of the Rings.

It's kind of sad in a way. If any film falls in the fantasy film category now days, it automatically will be compared to Lord of the Rings. All three Lord of the Rings films almost achieved perfection by most people's standards, with incredible performances and some of the best visual effects ever seen. So most fantasy films pale in comparison.

Too bad for the tale of Eragon. An exceptional book was turned into a mediocre film.

Don't get me wrong... it's still worth the rental on family night. You'll probably all enjoy it if your expectations aren't too high. But for those who read the book, it goes under the category of, "Not even close to as good as the novel!"

For those who don't know the story, it's about a young boy named Eragon who is thrust into an unexpected adventure when he finds a dragon egg in the forest. As the dragon hatches and grows, Eragon discovers that he is the last chosen dragon rider, an extinct race. He develops his gifts on his journey to find comrades for his cause, battling an evil magician who seeks to kill him and his dragon, eliminating the last of the dragon riders.

My family enjoyed the film. My son, who has read both of Paolini's books in the series so far, gave an unenthusiastic, "It was a'ight!" He said the film omitted and changed so many elements of the book that it eventually began to bother him.


Casino Royale (3/13/07)

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violent action, a scene of torture, sexual content and nudity.

Directed by Martin Campbell (the Zorro films, Vertical Limit, GoldenEye...)

Staring Daniel Craig, Eva Green, Judi Dench...

Jonthan's Rating: Theatre Worthy

My favorite Bond film yet!

Yes... I know that I just committed blasphemy to many die hard Bond fans. No disrespect to Sean Connery... this was better.

I don't usually like to watch other reviewers before I write a review, but I couldn't help but tune into Ebert and Roeper's review of this film on the plane yesterday. They said something that I heartily encore. They said, "Sean Connery will always be the best Bond, but I believe that Daniel Craig might just be the best actor who has ever played Bond."

When the "Fleming" gang decided that they were going to go back and do Ian Fleming's first Bond novel, Casino Royale, they made a smart decision to find a new young Bond. Controversy erupted (entire web sites were developed) criticizing the decision of making Craig the new Bond.

They're all eating their words now.

Daniel Craig was cool, he showed depth and emotion, and he was more believable as the "stud" that could do all these amazing feats-a truly more "athletic" Bond.


The Prestige (2/20/07)

Rated PG-13 for violence and disturbing images.

Directed by Christopher Nolan (Batman Begins & Memento)

Staring Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Scarlett Johansson and David Bowie

Jonthan's Rating: Rental

Todd's Rating: Theatre Worthy

Nolan delivers again.
    "Every magic trick consists of three parts, or acts. The first part is called "the pledge." The magician shows you something ordinary. A deck of cards, a bird or a man. He shows you this object. Perhaps he asks you to inspect it, to see that it is indeed real, unaltered, normal. But, of course, it probably isn't.

    The second act is called "the turn." The magician takes the ordinary something and makes it do something extraordinary. Now you're looking for the secret, but you won't find it, because, of course, you're not really looking. You don't really want to know. You want to be... fooled.

    But you wouldn't clap yet, because making something disappear isn't enough. You have to bring it back. That's why every magic trick has a third act. The hardest part. The part we call......'the prestige'."

You know that feeling when you see a really good magician (and I'm not talking about your creepy uncle and his lame quarter-behind-the-ear trick) you know that' "Wow, how'd he do that" moment? Well "the Prestige" is a lot like that.

Robert Angier (Hugh Jackman) and Alfred Borden (Christian Bale) are the two young magicians on the rise in turn-of-the-century London. After the tragic death of Angier's wife, he holds a grudge against Borden for an unforgivable mistake and the two part ways. Their once close friendship disintegrates into a bitter rivalry and their separate obsessions to become the world's greatest magician turn deadly.

TODD'S WORD: I loved it... from the opening scene where all you see is a pile of top hats and you hear someone whisper, "Are you watching closely?" to the fade to black and roll credits, I was hooked. I sat watching trying to figure out what was coming next, how did they "get" me, and wondering what I missed.

JONATHAN'S WORD: Similarly, I loved it at the beginning. But as the film turned darker, I enjoyed the film less.

Sure, it was a great piece of art. Critics everywhere are ranting about it. But I'll be honest: I like a "hero" in a film. I want to root for someone with character. The heroes in this film let me down again and again.

TODD'S WORD: Yeah, it definitely wasn't Happy Feet...

JONATHAN'S WORD: The penguin film?

TODD'S WORD: (sigh)... It wasn't an uppity little comedy!

JONATHAN'S WORD: Oh... okay.

TODD'S WORD: .... but with a director like Christopher Nolan, and actors like Christian Bale, Hugh Jackman and Scarlett Johansson, the movie could have been about paint drying and it would have been good.



JONATHAN'S WORD: You insinuated that if you have all kinds of good actors and a good director it had to be good. That's Magnolia. And the film was as boring as an insurance convention.

TODD'S WORD: May I continue?



Wild Hogs (3/2/07)

Rated PG-13 for crude and sexual content, and some violence.

Directed by Walt Becker (Van Wilder)

Staring Tim Allen, John Travolta, Martin Lawrence, William H. Macy, Ray Liotta, Marisa Tomei...

Jonthan's Rating: Rental

Wild Hogs is probably City Slickers meets The Three Amigos. But don't have your expectations quite that high.

Don't get me wrong... Wild Hogs is funny. It actually exceeded my expectations, but that's because my expectations were really low.

The film is about a group of suburban biker "wannabes" who go on a road trip hoping to find answers to their mid life crisis. Their trip turns South (SouthWest actually) when they tick off a gang of real bikers in New Mexico.



Reaching Out to the Unchurched Teenager Training: Coming to Detroit, Michigan on April 28th

Looking for an affordable training for you and your volunteers? Check out this Saturday training seminar from THE SOURCE coming soon to Detroit

Detroit, MI

April 28th, Jonathan is doing a Saturday workshop (9AM to 3PM) for youth workers within driving distance of Detroit, MI. If you're a youth worker, paid or a volunteer, this is for you!

Here's the details for this Michigan training:

    Saturday, April 28, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
    Two choices:
    • $15 at the door
    • $10 early bird rate if registered by April 21st

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