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Tag Archives: youth

Part two Parenting Teens and Tweens: Connection Is More Important Than Rules

#2 Connection is more important than rules. When they leave the kitchen a mess, don’t clean their rooms, miss the bus, wear attire that’s less than desirable, must have the last word, are sulky, moody or non-talkative, don’t do their chore they way you want, etc, don’t sweat the small stuff. I know that it may not feel like small stuff to you in the moment, but in the realm of what is most important in life it is small potatoes. In the bigger picture it is much more important to stay emotionally connected to them than for you to get your way and get them to follow a rule. It’s not that rules are unimportant. They are. You need, for example, rules for boundaries (they can be angry but no verbal attacks) and rules of engagement (no cell phones at dinner table so we can be present with one another). But do not. Read more.

Is Evangelicalism Exhausted?

This question was uttered by Gordon MacDonald during a recent leadership meeting at New Life. It has caused me to wonder also: “Might it be true?” He noted three things: Society is unraveling and evangelicalism has few answers. Research studies, like Reveal, seem to confirm that mega-churches do no grow deep Christians. Those who do go “deeper” with Christ often leave. 80% of the quotes in evangelical books are from outside our tradition, i.e. from Roman Catholics and the Orthodox believers. Consider also the following data coming out of recent research studies: Studies by several different organizations suggest that about half of men attending church are involved in pornography (Genung, 2005). A significant minority of self-identified born-again Christians, particularly those under 35, has cohabited, and divorce rates are just as high among born-again Christians as among other groups (Barna Research Group, 2001). An estimated 8 out of 10 youth from evangelical Christian homes walk. Read more.

Prayer and the Healing Waters of the Love of Jesus

Prayer is carrying people, paralyzed by life, to the healing waters of the love of Jesus. We meet a man in John 5, paralyzed and suffering for 38 years, who has been unable to get to the healing waters of the pool.  Fred Craddock notes that, perhaps, this was because able-bodied people with headaches, sunburn, and fever blisters continually beat the lame, the blind, and the paralyzed to the pool. What kind of community would allow someone to suffer 38 years without once helping him to the head of the line? At our NLF staff meeting last week, we symbolically created the “pool” through placing a blanket in the middle of a circle. We then invited individual staff to step into the “center of the pool,” representing people paralyzed by life. The rest of us in the circle then picked up the edges of the cloth blanket and gently ruffled it, “troubling the waters.” We. Read more.