Monday, October 4, 2010

Pray with Me?

This week at youth groups, we are electing our student leadership team members! Sunday, at our senior high youth group, we began our time together with a devotion on leadership. The students listed several qualities of being a leader and then we discussed how Jesus exemplified each of the characteristics they listed. Bottom line - we should strive to model our lives and ourselves as leaders after the example of Jesus. Afterall, it's all about example, right?! You may be the only Jesus somebody knows.
Also, this morning, in our stewardship Bible study, we were challenged to make a list of all of the things of which we should be good stewards (i.e. our bodies, our church, our money, our time, our attitude, our environment, and more!).
These two conversations convicted me to thinking further about myself and about three personal challenges I have been considering lately. I am challenged arond being a good steward of my time, attitudes, and priorities. I bet most of our students (and parents, for sure) can relate to these challenges!
For me, I've been convicted about being a good steward of my time and priorities, in part, because we hear so much about all of the miraculous healings Jesus was a part of in Bible stories. But, then I heard a challenge to consider the fact that Jesus frequently left people unhealed. Upon further investigation I realized that, quite often, Jesus said "no" to good things! I have a very hard time saying "no" to anything. What a great example to consider in today's busy, busy, busy culture.
As Blaine and I are living in to this new lifestyle of a 7:45pm bedtime (since he began kindergarten this year), I've been forced to saying "no" to friends and fun things, to meetings, and to many other options. Does time and priority challegne you? Do you feel convicted to say "no" to sport team practice or other extra-curricular activities on Wednesday nights so you can focus on your discipleship at youth group? Do you sleep in on Sunday morning or do you take moment to worship God with your church family? I heard a challenge today by the hip hop artist Jason Petty a.k.a. "Propoganda." When I was a teenager I loved to sleep! And there is not much better than a lazy Sunday morning! But this artist's statement is clear and profoud! He said (in the middle of sharing this epic poem) "You can chase down dreams or you can catch up on sleep." Click below to view the performance.

I'm also challenged about my attitude frequently. I mentioned in the front page devotion I wrote for our students in our October Student Ministry newsletter that I am a very emotional person and that because of that a growing edge for me is to think before speaking.
I've been especially challenged about being a good steward of my attitude in relation to the recent congregational survey at our chuch and an upcoming church-wide conversation about the results (this Sunday). I want to have and have been praying for the attitude of helping fix any issues for our congregation and discern the best way to move foward and bring excitement to Zion. On the other hand, it could seem that it would be much simpler and less challenging to just sit back and watch or remove ourselves from the conversation altogether. But, that would be too easy! And, I certainly don't think that is the approach Jesus would have taken. Does that challenge you?
I pray that our students and parents will join me in the challenge of being a good steward of our time, attitudes, and priorities as our church body gathers this Sudnay afternoon at 4:30pm to disuss the survey results and discern how to move foward at Zion Lutheran Church! Pray with me?

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