The Riches of Being in Christ (Eph. 1)
Definitly a highlight of this month has been diving into Ephesians in our Tuesday night youth group meetings. I can't tell you how profound a blessing it is to be able to study through the Word of God, have your own eyes and heart opened and challenged by it, and then be able to present it to the youth and watch God work in their lives. This is the first time I have ever taught through a book and the first time any of the youth have had someone teach them like that. There definetly has been some getting used to moving at a slower pace and going deep, but the youth have been surprisingly faithful in coming for the most part.
Praises and Prayer
- Praise for the faithful core group of about 10 youth who are committed and hunger for the Word
- Pray that God would open the eyes of their hearts (Eph 1:17-23) to the beauty and magnificence of Himself
- Pray that I would be faithful and effective in communicating the truth. Especially in my speaking, I don't think I am a very good communicator and it is sometime frustrating that I am so excited about the text but can't communicate in a way that infects others with that excitement and passion.
Every third tuesday of the month we have what we call, "Mid-Month Madness" where we just fellowship and do fun stuff, more of an outreach focus. This month we went bowling. Now for suburbanites that probably doesnt sound that unusual for a youth group event. But for us in the ghetto, bowling was a rare occasion. Needless to say our youth had a great time. I had fun, but I kinda got beat by a girl. It was pathetic. I didnt even break 100. But I did get a strike by bowling between my legs. Beat that Miriam. Most importantly the night brought some youth from the neighborhood out of the cracks who we have been able to build or rebuild relationships with.
- Praise God for blessing of sanctified fellowship!
A few tuesday's back I was teaching on Eph 1:7 talking about redemption and ended the night with a very personal, harsh controntation of the kids. I challenged those who proffess to be saved but are not living as if they were truly redeemed. It was one of those times that the Spirit powerfully moved in our hearts. We ended the night on our knees, weeping before God for our sin and thanking Him for His forgiveness. A dynamic night!
- Praise God that the Holy Spirit used His Word to convict hearts
- Pray that those youth's who were convicted about their hypocrisy and reaffirmed their faith and submission to the Lord would be encouraged in their walk and would lay aside distractions and sin in their pursuit to fix their eyes on Christ (Heb 12:1-3)
Our very Americanized Japanese international night went off without a hitch. It was a smaller group but one of the parents came and one of the staff also brought her friend who is from Japan. She talked about the state of the church in Japan and just general cultural interests. Very interesting. My highlight was dressing up like a ninja and throwing my ninja star at people.
- Praise God for his sovereignty in all the nations!
- Pray for the church in Japan
- Pray that God would bring more people to future international nights, and especially use it to build relationships with parents
For His glory,
by His grace