the parent organization (pbs – parents backing students) of the church’s school put on a 5th quarter tonight after the football game (we played lawless and it wasn’t much of a game – pbs 42 / lawless 0). pbs put the 5th quarter on taking care of all the details and i got to just walk in and say hey to my kids, meet some new ones, and basically just visit. i loved it. i didn’t have to organize anything, take care of details, order any pizza, or stay to clean-up. it was their ballgame and i was just a guest. i thought they did an excellent job with the whole thing and the kids seem to have a good time.
youth ministry wise parkview has been going through another attendance boom. when i first arrived at parkview we had between 15 & 25 teens showing up on wednesday nights for the view. they had gone through a rough time with the old youth minister leaving and the interim youth director. the group had shrunk from 100 – 140 showing up on wednesdays. slowly but surely things began to change and after 3 1/2 years we are averaging over 100 again. the great thing is that we’ve done it without gimmicks. we are not the “fun” youth ministry in town. in fact, i sometimes wonder if we might be boring. sure we change everything around all the time but we don’t do alot of “youthy” stuff. we worship, serve, and enjoy each other. that’s about it.
anyway here’s what sparked this trip down memory lane. tonight at the 5th quarter i had a senior in high school tell me he was going to start coming just because of the message series we are doing. this is the first time this has ever happened to me. here’s the kicker. the series is not a “youthy” message series. over the next 4 weeks i’m talking about the jewish “days of awe” and their relation to CHRISTian belief and practice. i would suspect a kid to come just to hear about relationships or GOD’s will for my life or something else like that. yet this is the first time i’ve ever had a teen say they were going to start coming to church just to hear a certain message. it’s not even like his a “spiritual giant” that we’re stealing from another church (which i hate). he doesn’t go to church anywhere on wednesday night because his home church doesn’t have a service. so he’s going to start joining us for the midweek service. not because it’s fun, not because of games or gimmicks, not because of a light show, or rocking music. nope because of a message series. i also tend to think that he knows that our kids and our adults love each other because of their love for GOD. i love my church and i love the youth ministry that i get to work with.