What is a Father?

I really enjoyed teaching and learning with the students once again. The students did a great job participating in the discussion!

Our discussion revolved around the question, “What is a father?”.

We agreed that a father is:

  1. a source (of life and growth)
  2. a provider
  3. a corrector (a teacher)
  4. someone who loves us unconditionally

We looked at various father figures and they all met this criteria. Fathers (whether a biological father, adopted father or a father figure) affirm your life and develop you. Fathers make sure we have what we need to live and grow by providing for us food, shelter, education, and yes… video games! Fathers take the time to correct us and discipline us because they care and want to us to grow up to be wonderful, responsible adults. Fathers love us, even when we are not acting lovable.

So once we agreed on that, we compared those characteristics to God. And Shazam! He matched.

God is the source of our existence: 1 Corinthians 8:6

God is our provider: Galatians 4:6

God is our corrector: Hebrews 12:5-11

Lastly, God loves us crazy unconditionally: 1 John 3:1, Romans 5:8

The evidence is so clear! So while we celebrated our dads this past Sunday (and we should), let’s not forget to celebrate our Heavenly Dad who has proven time and time again that He defines the word, “Father”.

Thanks for letting me spend time with you. I hope to do it again soon.

Your friend,

Paul

Hey Mom, meet my new friend…

The dynamic of our Sunday morning group is fantastic! Each of the students come from different places in their lives and different backgrounds and they still find ways to meet in the middle. This past Sunday was no different! We talked about Esther, her life as Queen of Persia, and how she saved her people. That sparked other questions and statements about the students’ lives and where they were coming from.

It was so amazing to see that when one student said she didn’t believe in Jesus, another jumped in and asked why and we had a discussion about it. When the other students saw she was getting uncomfortable, they transitioned to another topic and kept engaging with her to and help make her feel welcome and loved. They wanted to guide her to the Lord and still show love which was incredible to see.

So great job NextGen for again showing us all why you are amazing!

-Vince

The Temptations We Face

Cat poop in brownies?! Thank goodness it was just a metaphor and wasn’t true. Karlye and I had so much fun talking with the students about what we consume via social media, movies, songs, books, etc.

We looked at James 1:12-16 and found that we are not tempted by God but by our own desires. When we give in to our desires (our sinful nature) we begin heading down a slippery slope that, if we continued to follow, would lead to death. This is the reason it’s important to stay focused on the path God has before us, the righteous path.

It was amazing to me how much the students were aware of what causes the slow fade within us. We talked about friendships and the difficulties of saying “no” when so many are saying “yes.”

It was a great weekend and such an important lesson in today’s world!

Have a great week!

Ashley

Is it Wise?

Ashley and I had a great time with the students this Sunday! We started the discussion by asking the students what’s on their watch list for the summer. Some students are looking forward to binge watching Arrow, while other are eagerly anticipating the premier of The Incredible’s 2. We also asked what other media they will “consume” during their time off. YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram, and Xbox games were some common answers.

Then, as I presented a tray of fudgy, frosted, delicious-looking brownies, I asked who would eat one if they knew I added in just a little bit of cat poop while baking them. Yep, you read that right. Cat poop. Most of the students turned away in disgust while others said they would still eat them! Yuck! Of course there was NO poop in the brownies (in fact, I didn’t even bake them)! I used that illustration to show the students that watching a movie or YouTube video with just a little bit of inappropriate content in it is like eating a brownie with just a little bit of cat poop.

What we consume physically and mentally affects us. I pointed them toward Philippians 4:8 as a great list of what we should fill our minds with.

Stay tuned for more details from Ashley.

Have a great week!

Karlye