Month: June 2011

Camp Illustrations I’m Using

So many of you were very kind to give me lot’s of great ideas for camp. The ideas you all send me help spark my imagination and bring me different ideas… and sometimes the idea you bring to the table is exactly what I need. So, here’s what I’ve settled on using. Initially, I asked for three wise men. I got a couple of offers and several fell through. When I began to see that I might not get my hands on one, I realized that I better come up with a plan B. Actually, the plan B is turning out to be a really good solution. I’m doing a live nativity… kids always love seeing their leaders act stuff out. I might have access to a non-illuminated set that is close to the camp… so I might use that along with the live nativity. I also asked about an illustration of misfits and brokeness. I actually fell in love with the idea of getting actual car parts… like some doors. I think that with a little more time, I probably would have gone after that. This one was still really tough. Eventually, I found myself in Hobby Lobby and came across some colorful and decorative metal buckets. It’s not perfect, but I feel that they will get the point across well. Lastly, I asked about symbols of “defining”...

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Off to Summer Camp

They say that Disney is the “Happiest Place on Earth.” That may be true, but I think that summer camp comes pretty close. I think though that when you add in the life-impact that so many kids experience, Disney doesn’t have anything on camp. So, I’m extra excited because I get to go to camp twice. That’s right. I’m the Camp Pastor for two Pre-Teen camps for Camp Zephyr in Sandia, TX. I got to speak last summer (at the one Gateway’s kids attended) and this year I’m speaking next week when Gateway is there and the following week as well. I’ll be speaking 9 times during the first week and 7 times during the second. I must say that I’m super excited! So, what am I teaching? Well, I’m really excited about this as well. We’re using “Chase the Light” by reThink. It’s solid curriculum for sure. The videos that accompany are top notch and the theme is PERFECT. If you’re looking for a GREAT summer curriculum, you should check out “Chase the Light.” So, I took the script and modified for our needs. The theme is “Chase the Light” with the verse John 8:12. When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” The fun part...

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Kidmin Leadership Give-Away

So, Brother Jim sent me a box of books to give away. I’m leaving for Camp on Tuesday, so I want to get them out in the mail to you on Thursday. So, I’ll be scanning the #kidmin hashtag looking for your tweets. The first 2 people to tweet this message gets a copy of the book: “Check out the newest leadership book for #kidmin!” For the remaining three books, I’m going to randomly pick a winner. However, to increase your odds you can do two things. Post the above quote. For each time you post it today, you’ll get your name in the “hat” (limit of tweeting the above line 3 times). Post the quote below up to 3 times to get your name in the “hat” three more times. “Join @jimwideman at the @Illumin8Conf #kidmin Conference in Austin and Birmingham. Price goes up on Fri. Register today!” Hopefully I’ll announce some winners on Thursday and get the books out before I go to camp....

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Kidmin Leadership

I must say, this is a smart kid… and I’m not just saying that because he’s mine. Check out what he’s reading. Yeah, you guessed it. It’s the newest book published by my friend and mentor Jim Wideman. It’s called Kidmin Leadership. Jim’s first Infuse group put this book together and I think it’s worth picking up a copy. Can you find better leadership books out there? Yup. But what’s so unique about this book is that it’s one of the very few books specific to leadership in Kidmin. Also, what I enjoyed even more was about how you picked up an learned concepts the Brother Jim has taught for years through the filter of experience from others who have put it into practice in their own ministries. A very cool concept. So, pick up a copy of the book right here. You’ll be glad you...

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Birmingham Illuminate Conference: Coming Soon!

In case you missed it, Illuminate is a new conference specifically targeted to volunteers. We’re bringing the best in Kidmin to local communities for an affordable but powerful conference. Read more about our plans for Illuminate here. So, Birmingham is rapidly approaching. The Early Bird price actually expires on Thursday. So if you live in the Birmingham area and you are planning to attend the conference, be sure to take advantage of the Early Bird pricing right...

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Do you use Things?

I don’t mean to confuse any of you with the title. More than likely only some of the Mac users understood my question right away. I’m wanting opinions and thoughts on the task management software – Things. I remember hearing many say good things about it in the past, but I wanted some details. Anyone using it now who swears by it? Is it worth the money? Why is it better than Remember the Milk or other similar systems. I just finished a good book on productivity and I want to take my to-do list to the next level and it looks like Things could help me do what I need it to do (with tags and such). Any thoughts would be greatly...

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Illustrating God and Friendship

Okay, I feel really needy right now. I’m finalizing the last few messages for camp which is coming up in July. One of the messages that I’m really looking forward to is answering the question: Who is Jesus? In the morning we’re looking at Nicodemus who sought out to understand who Jesus really was, so that evening I’m comprehensively explaining who Jesus is. It should be a lot of fun. This is an important message because so many kids follow Jesus early because it’s all they know. Parents, Church, Sunday School and all the other GREAT influences point them to Jesus, so they do. However, at some point a child who comes to faith really early has to transition to where their faith truly becomes their own. They have to understand how Jesus was the plan for redemption. Many 7 year olds can tell you that Jesus died for their sins because they’re repeating back something they’ve heard for years. It’s important that kids truly understand why Jesus HAD to die for their sins. So, I do have a part of my talk that is very information heavy. Alone, it could be too much. So, I thought I’d pace it using a technique I learned form Aaron Reynold’s “Fabulous Reinvention of Sunday School.” I plan to have 5 podiums on stage with an object on each one… covered by...

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Blue Like Jazz: The Movie

Four or five years ago, many people were telling me about the book Blue Like Jazz, encouraging me to read it. I wasn’t reading an awful lot at that time, so I didn’t ever pick it up. Then in 2008, I heard Donal Miller speak at Orange for the first time. I’ve been to four Orange Conferences and I’ll be honest, the sessions/breakouts I still remember from 2008 was a breakout with Nancy Ortberg, the opening session with Reggie Joiner and the general session with Donald Miller. The stories he told have never left me. After he was interviewed by Reggie at the 2010 Orange Conference, I finally picked up his books Blue Like Jazz and A Million Miles in A Thousand Years. His talk about story really intrigued me… and it was the stories he told in 2008 that stuck with me. So, last week I finally finished A Million Miles. Incredible. In a few weeks, I look forward to picking up Blue Like Jazz. It should be interesting reading since A Million Miles was based on the process of creating a screenplay of Blue Like Jazz. A few months ago is when I learned that they were actually making a movie of Blue Like Jazz as I learned about how they were raising money for the movie through Kickstarter. They raised way more money than they needed and the...

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An illustration on misfits and brokeness

So, here’s a huge illustration I’m working on and I’m still not 100% sure on what direction I should go. So, please send me some of your ideas. Let me give you the premise. One of the major themes for camp is about being a misfit. When we “Chase the Light” and follow Jesus, we’re going to be seen as a misfit. The world around us isn’t going to understand or see why we’re doing the things we do. So, we’re playing with the different perspectives of being a misfit. The initial thought I had was to have a container of tennis balls and another container of ping pong balls… or something else that is even more different than the tennis balls. I was going to illustrate how to the tennis balls, another tennis ball seems normal and acceptable. To the ping pong balls, another ping pong ball seems normal and acceptable. Nothing out of the ordinary. However, if I were to put a ping pong ball in with the tennis ball, the ping pong ball becomes the misfit. It becomes the strange and different item in the batch. In a ways, that is what we are when we follow Christ. We don’t completely fit with the world around us and although media, peer pressure and other factors will push us to conform and become more like the “tennis...

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Do you know where I can get some wise men?

Okay, my first big request. For Summer Camp I’m using “Chase the Light” curriculum from Orange. Let me tell you, it’s incredible. If you’re looking for some good camp curriculum, some curriculum for the summer break or anything special like that, you can’t go wrong with Chase the Light. I’ve had so much for preparing my messages and I’m excited to speak on these issues in particular. I think it’s going to be a life-changing week for hundreds of kids. So, the first message in the curriculum is about the wise men who traveled to see Jesus. I’m doing a bit of a fun intro at the beginning and I thought that it would be fun to have those light-up plastic wise men that people loved to put in their yards in the 80’s.. and some of them even now. I was going to set the scene and do it in a funny way explaining how there probably wasn’t just 3 wise men and how they didn’t arrive at the manger scene… just a little historical background information. I thought it would be fun to do with the plastic wise men. However, what I’ve learned is that these these wise men have become vintage. What you used to be able to buy at KMart for 10-20 bucks will now set you back $40 or $50. So, I figured that I’d...

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