Please Take My Super Short 2014 Reader Survey

I want to know more about you. But not in the creepy stalker sort of way–don’t worry! Between 500 and 800 people visit this blog each month, and I’d like to serve you better. This short survey will help me know how to make this blog more relevant to your needs and interests.

Will you please take a few minutes and fill out this short survey? This will help me serve this community of readers better, by making more content even more relevant and targeted for you.

Thanks in advance for your help! Your response is super important to me. The survey is only ten questions long. It’s completely anonymous. I can’t tell who said what. And, it will take less than 5 minutes of your time.

Please fill out the survey below, or, if you’re receiving this via email, click here to take the survey.


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Jesus-Style Disciple-Making: a Look at Christ’s Relationship with Peter

Earlier this week, I posted the first talk I gave at the JV Fall Conference about meeting with God.

In this second talk, we look at the life of Peter, and how God called him to radiate God’s love in ways Peter never could have imagined . . .


(If the player above doesn’t work, click here to play or download the file.)

If you’d like to listen to the whole conference–which I highly recommend!–click here.

Take a look around . . .

Hey friends,

Welcome to the new site! Please take a look around, and be sure to leave a comment or send an email if anything is broken. I hope you like the new look!


Have You Seen This Person?

Friends–This post isn’t about youth ministry. It isn’t about God. It’s not even about Christianity–at least, not directly. It’s about people–me and you–and it’s about life. I wrote it about two weeks ago. It’s longer than usual, because it’s more story than blog post. Thanks for experiencing it with me …

The rain is beating against the top of the tent as I write this. I’m sitting on a blue, nylon cot, my back aching for lack of a normal chair. Caleb, on the green cot a few feet away, is peeking out at me from inside his sleeping bag. Hopefully soon sleep will overtake him for his mid-afternoon nap. Occasionally I reach up with a black Maglight flashlight and push the puddle off the roof of the tent, so it doesn’t begin to drip through. It’s been dumping rain like this for the better part of two days.

All told, I’ve spent more than 2 years of my life camping in tents. I’ve endured Idaho rainstorms so powerful that the wind rolled tents down the beach–with people still in them. But this is the first one I’ve sat through on the back patio of a house. Why? Because Caleb and I simply can’t go inside.
[Read more…]

Why I’ve Been Quiet . . .


It’s been almost three weeks since I last wrote–my apologies! Let me explain: for the last 14 weeks, my wife has walked a most difficult medical road. I won’t go into full details here, but it has included a spinal fluid leak, over 30 medical visits, and lots of pain. She’s been amazing through it all, but it hasn’t left much time for writing–hence my quietness here . . .

I plan to ‘relaunch’ this blog at the beginning of June, so I hope you’ll remember to check back then. In the meantime, feel free to read a post or two you may have missed, or add a comment to a discussion. We all benefit from your thoughts.

By the way, I sure appreciate your participation in this community.  Over the last 7 months, almost 1500 people from 55 different countries have visited here. How fun!  I’m excited to learn what God teaches us over the next months together . . .

Question: What topics or questions would you like to talk about when this blog relaunches?

A Birthday Request

Today is Marc Jackson’s Birthday.  It’s also Billy Graham’s birthday.  And it’s mine.  (Kind of fun to share a b-day with Billy Graham!)

It’s also been a little over a month since I started blogging again.  Thanks for joining me!  I consider it a privilege to share a few thoughts with those who read.  And, I’m excited for the months ahead.  We’ve got some great conversations in store, including:

  • How to Lead an Effective Small Group–a look at the way Jesus taught, and how that should impact how we teach
  • The Art of the Question–what makes a good question ‘good’?  Why do some questions work and others cause ‘frozen faces’?
  • Essential Postures of a Youth Leader–ancient shepherd (not sheepdog), guide (not expert or fellow traveler), etc

I want this blog to bless people–that’s my prayer.  Would you do me a favor?  If you know someone who would benefit from this blog, would you tell them about it?  You could forward them this message (or one of your favorite posts).  You could tell them about it on Facebook or Twitter.  You could even tell them in person (although that would be strange . . .)  :).  No pressure–great numbers isn’t the goal.  But, if you think the content here could be useful to someone else, feel free to let them know.

Thanks!  And, happy birthday Marc–and Billy Graham!

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