Arm Our Teens - Pocket Testament League Review

>> Sunday, July 8, 2012

“Why’re you wearing that shirt? Haven’t you ever heard of separation of church and state?” The noisy hallway grew quiet as Mattea considered the question.

“We can wear Christian t-shirts and we can pray in school…”

Anthony came along beside her and finished, “and we can bring our Bibles.”

The boy argued, “That’s not what we learned in History class. Church is church and school is school.”

“School officials try to bully us but it’s not legal.” Suddenly everyone scattered and left the two ‘rebels’ alone.

Mr. Porter, Vice-Principal, walked confidently down the hall. “Office, now.”

This is exactly what many of our students face every day.  I work in a high school and when they see my Bible on my desk, they’re surprised.  I tell them, "You can bring your Bible to school."  It's amazing how kids believe the lie that’s being told to them.  Our Christian teens need to know what is evangelism and they need to know how to how answer questions that come up from their friends when they carry their Bibles and wear their popular Christian t-shirts.  Both parents and their teens can go to the Pocket Testimony website and receive free evangelism training.  The evangelism tools are easy to learn to use.

There are many teens who are on fire and ready to flood their schools this upcoming year with the Word of God.  What better way than with the Gospel of John from the Pocket Testament League?  They can be ordered with over 30 different, up-to-date covers: all very appealing and colorful. 

Even in grade school, students are read books that introduce evolution.  It may not say the word but the concepts are there.  By the time they are in High School, they are primed and ready to be taught the theories.  Our kids need to know the truth.  In the free daily devotionals on the website, I am especially impressed with the very first lesson which deals with chapter one of John and will arm our students with that truth. The devotional points out that we have to face the most challenging question ever as a follower of Jesus Christ: "Where did God come from?" 

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.”  (John 1:1-3)

No Big Bang Theory there!  God, our creator – period!  This is a great devotional and I highly recommend completing it as a family to prepare our students as they enter into the new school year.  Help your child, “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks… to give the reason for the hope that (they) have.” (1 Peter 3:15 NIV)  Let’s arm our teens with the Word of God as they go out into the world August, 2013 and beyond.

Pocket Testament League is the perfect tool for you and your family!


Seeing the Crowds...

>> Sunday, July 1, 2012

This morning, Greg, our pastor, told the story of Esther. He didn't preach to us. He didn't read from the Bible. He was dressed in character and he became a part of Esther's time. Greg's been known to preach from time to time. :) He's also been known to read whole chapters from the Bible. I love the variety. He also mixes up the flow of the service. I especially like that. We walk in each Sunday not really knowing what might happen.

But today, I could imagine our service being a bit like during Jesus' time.  No one wiggled in their seats.  No one was bored.  We all were enamored because Greg was speaking our language.  He spoke to our hearts.  He made us feel for each character.  

"Seeing the crowds, he (Jesus) went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, His disciples came to Him.  And He opened His mouth and taught them, saying:
(Matthew 5:1-2 ESV)

After reading this, I wondered where all did Jesus talk to the people? 
  • Before He was even born, people were clamoring to see Him in Bethlehem.
  • "And he went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people. So his fame spread throughout all Syria, and they brought him all the sick, those afflicted with various diseases and pains, those oppressed by demons, epileptics, and paralytics, and he healed them. And great crowds followed him from Galilee and the Decapolis, and from Jerusalem and Judea, and from beyond the Jordan."  (Matthew 4:23-25 ESV)
  • Up on the mountain where He gave the Sermon on the Mount.  This was after he was tempted by satan.
  • No rest, the crowds followed Him down off the mountain too when He healed the centurion's servant.  (Matthew 8)
  • Peter's house (Matthew 8)
  • house of tax collectors and sinners (Matthew 9)
  • Beside the sea (Matthew 13)
  • His hometown Nazareth but was rejected (Matthew 13)
  • On the shore, right off the boat when He fed the 5,000 (Matthew 14)
  • Gennesaret - all the people had to do was touch his garment and they were made well! (Matthew 14 ESV)
  • Beside the Sea of Galilee and up the mountain - where He fed the 4,000 (Matthew 15)
  • Galilee and Capernaum (Matthew 17)
  • Judea - let the little children come (Matthew 19)
  • Jericho - blind men (Matthew 20)
  • Mount of Olives - "And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” And when he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up, saying, “Who is this?” And the crowds said, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth of Galilee.”  (Matthew 21:9-11 ESV)

I can imagine sitting on the side of the mountain, listening to Jesus. Or running after Jesus, reaching out for a piece of His robe. Or maybe cooking for Him and washing His dishes. Oh my! I can imagine doing all of this. My favorite thing of all, going out and finding Him in the coolness of the morning. Sneaking up on Him as he talked to His Father. And He would see me out of the corner of His eye and smile and I would know all was well.

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