Reflection and the Benefits of Writing…

We are all writers.  Even if you don’t realize it, we are.  In emails, texts, school work, reports for your job, in so many ways we all write.  The benefits of a journal are tremendous.  That is partly why I blog.  To be honest, I do for me as much (or more) than I do it for you.  I also use the MacJournal software.  It helps me reflect on my day/week/situation.

But do you reflect?  I don’t do it enough.

While this helps in every area of life, it is particularly useful in your spiritual walk.  To reflect on what God has done in the past gives us perspective for where are currently and where we want to go in the future.

In this Russell Moore video requested by, he discusses the ability to overcome writers block and the benefits of reflection.  Soak in his 2:21 of wisdom.

5 Reasons I Write My Own D-Now Curriculum

The Band has been rockin’, the speaker has been bringing the Word. Disciple-Now is in full swing this weekend for my ministry. The students just finished up a video scavenger hunt and have gone to a few hours of free time before our next session. In this moment to breathe I have decided to type up a quick blog on some of my methods. It was on my mind last night when I couldn’t sleep because I was thinking of all the details for the next day. If you work with teenagers, I hope this encourages you to take your next event to the next level.

Here are 5 reasons why I write my own material for event weekends like Disciple Now.

  1. It’s Free– When paying for a band and a speaker, hotel rooms, small group leaders, travel expenses, and the list goes on, here is an area I can save money. If you preach every Wednesday anyway, this is not very different study-wise, other than I just give the material to someone else to teach. By writing my own material I can maximize the funds toward keeping the cost low for the students. This year I charged $10. Bam. Success. There are lots of students who don’t participate in camps and retreats because it costs 100s of dollars. This is an event I want any and every teen to be able to come to. A little more work on my end helps keep it that way.
  2. Be Theologically Rich– Even though it is free, that doesn’t mean when you write your own material it will be lame! I make sure we tackle deep subjects and dive into the theological deep end! When you purchase a pre-packaged curriculum you do not know the theological leanings of the writer or the depth to which they will challenge your students. I want my students to have the best, so why would I leave that up to an unknown author? This weekend we are looking at Ephesians 3 – a theological treasure trove! Oh yeah!
  3. The Exegetical Approach–  On the heels of #2, I really believe every verse in scripture is important for believers. If that is true I want to instill that into my teenagers. When we take a whole weekend to unpack a single chapter of the bible, that is one message that is communicated. Also when you systematically approach a text, it makes it easier to see the bigger picture the author intended to communicate. I believe this also provides cohesiveness to the weekend. Each time we gather the students know where to turn in their bibles. I have not found any national chain producing exegetical material for events like this, possibly with the exception of Global Youth Ministry, but then again, refer to point #1.
  4. I know my group– When you write your own material you can tailor it for your specific group. While God can use anything and anyone to speak through, I doubt that same d-now material being used by 43 other churches this weekend can intentionally speak to the subtleties of a specific group better than a prayerful pastor who spends every week with them. So why not use a weekend to address what you want to see happen! It helps when another voice comes in and says the same things you have been saying all along.
  5. Graphics don’t have to be intimidating– “I cant make great looking flyers and promo material!?!” For real, don’t be scared, you can. Here are two things that make life super easy when it comes to promoting your event. Cool Fonts and Stock Photos. Combining these make great stuff.  My d-now was themed “The Mystery”, below is a cool stock photo and a cool font to title it. Bam, easy promotion. Sites I uses for photos are and Make an account and spend a few buck on a high res picture with no copy right issues for your next event. Then go to or just google “free fonts” and get some fonts that really add depth to your flyer.  It’s not that hard and for a couple bucks you can have a professional looking flyer/promo that corresponds to your personalized material.

I hope these thoughts help as you plan your next d-now or retreat weekend! Pray for me as we wrap up ours! May God be glorified by your efforts!


mystery image

High School Students Show Off Really Bad Writing Skills

So I’m not claiming to be much better, but I’d like to think I have a bit more skill than some of these students. Some may think this is a sign of the times, and to a small degree it may be. But for the most part I post this just for a light hearted laugh. I’m product of public schooling myself, so no stone throwing here.

🙂 Hope you enjoy reading these like I did (…and you go home and encourage your teenager to study hard in English class so they don’t end up in a list like this!)  – Adam

Saturdays with C.S. Lewis

The weekend is here. I hope you enjoy some rest and relaxation somewhere in your day. Today brings a new series I want to introduce to my readers.

Saturdays with C.S. Lewis

Each Saturday as you peruse your favorite blogs and Facebook interests you can stop in here for a look at one of the most eloquent laymen ever to speak and write about Christianity. C.S. Lewis was never a preacher or a pastor. He was never employed by a church or enrolled in theological education. In fact, Lewis described himself as the “most reluctant convert” to Christianity.

C.S. Lewis was an English professor at Oxford University. After converting to Christianity as a 33 year old, he thoughtfully began to apply his faith to real life. His craft was literature, therefore he began to use his craft for the glory of God. (Just as we all should bloom where we are planted and honor God with whatever talents He has given us.)

Lewis wrote fiction and non-fiction, and is well respected for both. He knew how to connect with real life and communicate with his readers as if they were old friends.

Why do I read and respect C.S. Lewis?

Because every time I pick up one of his books 1.) he makes me think. But not just to think about the topic at hand, he trains me to think. My christian worldview is honed and sharpened whether I am traveling the battlefields of Narnia or debating the issues in Mere Christianity. Next, 2.) he makes me deal with today. Even though he wrote in a day with no blogs, Facebook or Twitter (I’d love to hear Screwtape’s take on social media) his keen eye for the heart of the issue cuts through the cultural differences and speaks to universal principles that transcend time and space. The truths of Christianity are just as true in 1941 with WWII raging as they are in 2012 with all of our current issues. Lewis reminds me to speak to our day in a way that is articulate, thoughtful, and respectful. And lastly, 3.) he is simply a joy to read. His style and flow are the work of an artist. He connects with the child as easily as the scholar. On this point I will note that while his style is intoxicating, not all is theologically correct.

I even believe he is downright wrong on some issues. This drives home the fact that we cannot be blind followers of any man. We are to follow the Lord Jesus alone. While I think Lewis has so much to offer this new generation of believers, we filter everything through the lens of scripture. When Lewis doesn’t jive with God’s Word, we see that for what it is and choose to bring every thought captive to Christ. For example, Lewis, in the final Narnia series book, The Last Battle, leaves the door open to the possibility of people entering into heaven through other faiths. I understand this to be totally wrong. Recognizing this flaw I do not discard the entire Chronicles of Narnia, but am reminded that our theology informs our fiction and not the other way around. God’s Word alone is authoritative in describing entrance into His family.

Each Saturday we will enjoy snippets from C.S. Lewis together. Through his quotes, imagery, and arguments we will see that Lewis is spiritually profitable for this generation as much as he was for his own. I look forward to hearing your comments as we open the treasure trove of the life and works of C.S. Lewis.

Your fellow worker in the field,  Adam