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Jr High Parents’ Update – Oct 28th

Posted by on Oct 28, 2014 in Featured, Parents | 0 comments

October 2014 - A Strong Foundation - Web Graphic

Hello parents! I apologize for my lack of updates over the past few weeks. I just got back from one of my favorite places on earth, Newfoundland. My family has a cabin on the ocean in a small fishing town called Port Anson, and as often as I possibly can, I head out there to relax, enjoy the outdoors and hit the reset button on the business of the year. I haven’t been able to get down east in the fall for a few years, and jumped on the last minute opportunity to go and spend some time with my parents, and grandmother who is currently in the hospital.

Things have been exciting in the FUEL Jr High world over the past two Tuesday nights, as we had our annual Turkey Olympics (we had over 130 students join us, crazy!) and this past week, my wife Breanna spoke in my absence. Bre opened up our new series, “A Strong Foundation” with her teaching on Outreach, and the importance in helping others on behalf of the Church, and God’s mission.

Tonight, David Looby will be speaking on the second part of our foundation, Scripture. Here is what he has to say about his teaching tonight:

Tonight we’ll be talking about why scripture is foundational to our lives!  In our small groups tonight, I hope to see everyone go to the next level and discuss how we can use scripture during our daily lives and not just when we run into hardships.  I want our leaders to feel free to take the conversation within their small groups to a place that benefits our students most! Encourage them to see the importance in reading their bibles and memorizing scripture! 

Here are the follow-up questions that our students will be discussing in small groups:

Question 1 What are some life events that may shake you up if you don’t have a firm foundation?

Question 2: How can we ensure that our lives are built upon scripture?

Question 3: How else can we use scripture in our lives?

Question 4: What verses have you memorized that have helped you through tough times?

Out Key  Verse:

I have stored up your word in my hear, that I might not sin against you.

Psalm 199:11 (ESV)

Thank you so much for investing in the lives of your Jr Highs each week!

Josh

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Sr High Parent’s Update – October 22

Posted by on Oct 21, 2014 in Featured, Parents, Youth Workers | 0 comments

October 2014 - Influence - Main Graphic

INFLUENCE

Week 3 – Green Beans

October 22nd

 

 

 

 

 

 

Main Thing …

Most of us remember in grade 3 getting to plant a green bean in a Styrofoam cup and watering it and watching it grow.  It was so cool to see that seed turn into a plant.  As you think of the things that influence you and how you spend your free time, you need to think about what seeds are being planted in your heart and what they are going to produce.

 

 

Scratch the Surface…

  • High’s and lows
  • Can you recall planting the green beans in grade 3 … did yours die?

 

 

Dig a Little Deeper…

  • What are some of your favorite ways to spend your free time?
  • Refer to Galatians 6:7-10 … what are some differences between sowing to please the flesh and sowing to please the Spirit?
  • What kind of harvest do you think you would reap if you sow in the flesh?
  • What kind of harvest do you think you would reap if you sow in the spirit?

 

 

Personal…

  • You could share about what you do to “sow to please the spirit”
  • You could talk about how this is a battle every day and what you do to fight it

 

 

Applications…

  • Pray with your group that God would help us in this area
  • In what ways could you use your free time to sow good seeds?

 

Key Scriptures …

 

Galatians 6:7-10

 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.  Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.  Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

Psalm 19:9-10

 The decrees of the Lord are firm, and all of them are righteous. They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the honeycomb.

 

 

 

 

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Sr High Parent’s Update – October 15th

Posted by on Oct 15, 2014 in Featured, Parents, Youth Workers | 0 comments

October 2014 - Influence - Main Graphic

INFLUENCE

Week 2 – Whatcha’ listening to?

October 15th

 

 

 

 

Main Thing …

Media is all around us and it has a huge impact on us.  There are some media influences that you cannot avoid, but there are others that you are choosing that will have a negative or positive influence on you.  How does God want us to navigate through this crazy intense Media age?

 

 

Scratch the Surface…

  • High’s and lows
  • If Jesus were on the earth today had an iTunes account, what do you think his favourite band would be? Why?

 

Dig a Little Deeper…

  • Make a list of 10 positive media influences?
  • Make a list of 10 negative media influences?
  • What types of media can you not avoid?
  • What types of media do you choose?
  • Do you think that media has any influence on you?
  • Talk about how you think God wants us to think about Media?
  • Should we be careful?  Does God care? Should I do whatever I want?

 

Personal…

  • You could share about how you choose what media you consume
  • You could talk about a change that you had to make in the past because of the negative impact of media

 

Applications…

  • Pray with your group that God would help us in this area
  • Are there any changes that you need to make in regards to media?

 

Key Scriptures …

 

Colossians 2:6-10

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.  See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the elemental spiritual forces of this world rather than on Christ.  For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.

 

John 6:35

 Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.

 

 

 

 

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Sr High Parents Update – October 8th

Posted by on Oct 9, 2014 in Featured, Parents, Youth Workers | 0 comments

October 2014 - Influence - Main Graphic

INFLUENCE

Week 1 – Friends

October 8th

 

 

 

 

Main Thing …

  • Friendships are important to each one of us, and the Bible has a ton to say about friendships.  Depending on how you choose your friends, it can be a positive thing or a negative thing.  As we look at the dynamics of the relationship between Mary, Martha and Jesus, we will gain some huge insight.

Scratch the Surface…

  • High’s and lows
  • If you had Jesus coming over for supper … what meal would you make? Why

 

Dig a Little Deeper…

  • In this story … what did Mary do right and what did Martha do wrong?
  • What is the difference between having influence on your friends and your friends having influence on you?
  • What are some reasons why God would want you to choose your friendships carefully?

 

Personal…

  • You could share about a valuable friendship growing up
  • You could talk about a destructive friendship growing up and the lessons that you learned from that

 

Applications…

  • Pray with your group
  • Are there any friendships that you feel like you need to withdraw from?

 

Key Scriptures …

Luke 10:38-42

“As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him.   She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said.  But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”   “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things,  but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Matt 6:33

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

 

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Jr High Parents’ Update – Oct 7th

Posted by on Oct 7, 2014 in Featured, Parents | 0 comments

October 2014 - WE Are the Church - Web Graphic

Last week we discovered the importance of sharing a common vision together as Christ’s Church, and the steps that we can take to change our own attitudes and lifestyles to line up to fit that vision. This week we conclude our series, and talk about how we each have a part to play in Christ’s Church. We know that the Church isn’t a building, but it IS a body, and Christ is the head of the body. Each of the rest of us make up a different part of the body. 

We’re going to go back and look at 1st Corinthians, where Paul talks about how we each have a part to play. Together, we need to use our gifts, talents and abilities to benefit Christ’s Church. We aren’t called to do something that we aren’t good at, but we are called to use the talents and abilities that we’re best at to benefit and further the Church.

Here are the follow-up questions that our students will be discussing in small groups:

Question 1 What is your part to play in the Church?

Question 2: What are some gifts and abilities that you think you need to work on to use for the Church?

Question 3: How does this change the way that you look at your gifts, talents and abilities? Are there talents that you thought were useless until you knew that you could use them for the Church?

Out Key  Verse:

28 Here are some of the parts God has appointed for the church:

first are apostles,

second are prophets,

third are teachers,

then those who do miracles,

those who have the gift of healing,

those who can help others,

those who have the gift of leadership,

those who speak in unknown languages.

29 Are we all apostles? Are we all prophets? Are we all teachers? Do we all have the power to do miracles? 30 Do we all have the gift of healing? Do we all have the ability to speak in unknown languages? Do we all have the ability to interpret unknown languages? Of course not! 31 So you should earnestly desire the most helpful gifts.

But now let me show you a way of life that is best of all.

1 Corinthians 12:28-31 (NLT)

Here are three things you can be praying for this week:

1. That our students would know the importance of being a part of Christ’s Church, and discover their roles together.

2. That our leaders would be able to communicate this concept of the Church not being about the building, but about the people.

3. That as parents, you would discover your own role in Christ’s Church, and be able to radiate a passion for it towards your kids.

Thank you so much for investing in the lives of your Jr Highs each week!

Josh

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A letter to Parents

Posted by on Oct 2, 2014 in Featured, Parents, Youth Workers | 6 comments

 

 

 

 

type 3

A LETTER TO PARENTS … AFTER 19 YEARS OF YOUTH MINISTRY

Parents,

Here we go!  Adolescence.  4 years of high school.  4 years of youth ministry, and some would say … 4 years of chaos.  I have been involved in youth ministry for over half of my life.  I have worked with teenagers a lot.  I have seen many students go through this journey of adolescence.  To them it seems like a huge chunk of their lives and to parents it can seem overwhelming because their little kid has grown up and is now making decisions on their own.  This time goes by so fast, but it is so formative and has an impact on the rest of their lives.

I have seen many things happen to students through this teenage experience.  I have seen some focus on their relationship with God, sort out their faith, wrestle with tough questions and come through on the other side strong, vibrant and ready to continue on in their pursuit of Christ.  I have seen other students overwhelmed with life, with issues, with things from the past and sadly, rather than turn to God, turn to the things of this world for comfort.  I have seen other students run to this world for acceptance, assurance, and security.  I have seen other students totally buy into the lies of this world and throw themselves into the lifestyle of friends, parties, drinking, sex, drugs, etc.  I have watched them get wrapped up and consumed by this lifestyle only to wind up empty, hurt, broken, and full of regret.  My heart rejoices with families where students pursue God through these years.  My heart breaks for families who basically go through utter turmoil during this season with their son/daughter.

With all the different scenarios that teenagers can go through, I have seen the finger being pointed in many different directions.  Some point the finger at the parents.  “Man if you had done a better job.”  “If you would just spent more time with them.”  “If only you had been more engaged as a parent.”  “If only you prayed more.”  “You should have been a better example.”  Others point the finger at the church.  “Man, if that youth pastor would preach better.”  “If only they would go to more conferences.”  “If only they would host more events.”  “I wish that their small group leader would do a better job.”  I have seen the finger pointed at the teenager.  “You are such an idiot.”  “What is wrong with you?”  “Smarten up.”  “Make better choices.”  “You are screwing up your life.”  I have also seen the finger pointed at God.  “God, how could you allow this to happen.”  “This is my baby girl, this is my boy.”  “God, how could this be happening to me?”  I would suggest that we need to take the finger and point it at ourselves, and say things like; “My effort and involvement is crucial.”  “With God’s help I can have a positive impact.”  “I have something to contribute.” “What can I do to help?”  The best scenarios that I have seen throughout almost 2 decades of youth ministry are where the parents and the church work together.  Both parents and youth ministries want what is best for the children, and that is a genuine authentic relationship with Christ.

We as a youth ministry want to make a commitment to parents.  We will provide an atmosphere where your son and daughter can engage in worship, and inspired, age appropriate biblical teaching.  We will provide a scenario where your son or daughter will be in conversation and relationship with an adult mentor, and with other teenagers their age.  We will provide opportunities where your son or daughter can go away on retreats, and events where they can grow in their faith and have fun with others. We will recognize parents as the number one influence in their children’s lives.  We will cheer your students on, we will give them someone to talk to, and we will help them wrestle with their faith and their tough questions about Christianity.  We will not always do things totally right, but we will work hard at it because we understand how impressionable they are.  Parents, we need to do this together.  Will you do everything that you can to get your students here to youth?  Will you make church a priority as a family on the weekends?  Will you live out your faith at home in front of your teenagers?  Will you refuse to badmouth the youth ministry, but rather support us in conversations at home?  When your son or daughter complains to you about something, will you trust the leadership, and come to us and talk through the issues?  Will we stand together?

Throughout your son/daughters high school career, they will have many experiences.  They will wrestle with their faith.  They will ask big questions about God.  They will face incredible pressure form their peers.  They will feel insecure.  They will be tempted to experiment sexually.  They will be put in situations where their faith will be challenged.  They will be offered illegal substances. They will be surrounded by people who have a negative influence on them.  They will withdraw and close off from their parents at some level, and they will seek help elsewhere.  My prayer is that they would turn to the church, rather than withdrawing from it.  Also that they would look to God, parents, the church, leaders and friends to find help and support, and to wrestle with their faith and work it out.  It is tragic that a teenager would grow up and never wrestle with their faith and ask those tough questions.  For many, if they wait till university and college it is too late.

Yeah … you could do it on your own.  Yeah … we could do it on our own with a handful of students.

But together we are stronger,

 

Kevin Norcross

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Sr High Parent’s Update – October 1st

Posted by on Oct 1, 2014 in Featured, Parents, Youth Workers | 0 comments

 Sr High - Pursue God - Web Graphic

PURSUE GOD

Eye on the Prize

Oct 1st 2014

 

 

 

 

Parents,

Here is a look at what we are talking about at youth this week.  There are so many distractions that are competing for the student’s attention.  This week we are going to talk about how to Pursue God despite those distractions.  There are some great conversations that you can have with your son/daughter about this, and about how you can fight these distractions.

Kevin

 

Main Thing …

 

Imagine a World Cup soccer player running down the field and breaking past the defence and getting a chance for a clear shot on goal.  Right before he takes the shot, he stops and grabs his phone and texts his mom.  He clearly did not keep his eye on the prize.  The bible talks very clearly about how we can get distracted by the things of this world and lose sight of the prize ahead of us.

 

 

Scratch the Surface …

  • High’s and lows
  • Have you ever texted on your phone and tripped or walked into someone?

 

Dig a Little Deeper…

  • Why does the bible compare our physical/spiritual life with a race?
  • What are some reasons why God would want us to run after relationship with Him?
  • What are some things that would distract a teenager from focusing on the prize and running the race?

 

Personal …

  • You could share about ways that you focus on the prize
  • You could talk about why you think this is important

 

Applications …

  • Pray with your group
  • Talk about things that are distracting us and pray about them

 

Key Scriptures …

 

Hebrews 12:1  “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,”

 

Philippians 3:14

“Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

 

 

 

 

 

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Sr High Parent’s Update – Sept 24th

Posted by on Sep 24, 2014 in Featured, Parents, Youth Workers | 0 comments

Sr High - Pursue God - Web Graphic 

PURSUE GOD

Do you brush your teeth every day?

Sept 24 2014

 

 

 

 

 

Parents,

Last Wednesday, the flu went through my house like a tornado, so I was unable to be at youth.  Thankfully Josh Black and Cam Korpan stepped in and they had a great night at youth.  We had to cancel Parents night, but we have rescheduled it for next week October 1st – I have some great thoughts to share with you about parenting and where we are headed as a youth ministry this year.  Please take a look at the small group that we will be covering this week at youth.

Thanks!

Kevin Norcross

 

 

Main Thing …

  • We all spend time getting ready for our day.  Some eat breakfast, tie their shoes, and throw on a hat.  Others even go as far as brushing their teeth and throwing on some deodorant.  In the same way that we get ready physically for the day ahead, there are things that we can do to get ready Spiritually

 

 

Scratch the Surface …

  • High’s and lows
  • What is your morning routine like (breakfast or not)?  Does it include brushing your teeth!?!

 

Dig a Little Deeper…

  • What do you think it means to prepare spiritually for the day ahead?
  • What are some reasons why God would want us to spend time with Him every day?
  • What are some legit excuses why we would not do this every day?  How could we battle that?

 

Personal …

  • You could share about your own journey of daily time with God
  • You could talk about how you spend time with God and what works for you

 

Applications …

  • Pray with your group
  • Challenge your group to make some commitment to having a daily time with God

 

Key Scriptures …

 

John 10:10

“The thief comes only to steal kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.”

 

Matthew 22:37

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”

 

 

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Jr High Parents’ Update – Sept 23rd

Posted by on Sep 23, 2014 in Featured, Parents | 0 comments

October 2014 - WE Are the Church - Web Graphic

WE are the Church. The Church isn’t a building. The Church isn’t even a place. The Church is US. When Jesus left this Earth, he instructed His disciples to be the Church, and to invite others to be the Church. Together, we have skills, talents and abilities that when used for God’s mission, fill the gaps and make an unstoppable group that gives glory to God the entire way. 

This month we’ll look at how WE are the church, how WE have a common vision, and how YOU have a part to play in this amazing thing called Christ’s Church. 

But starting this week, we’ll take a look at Paul’s writing in 1 Corinthians where he explains that We together are the Church.

Here are the follow-up questions that our students will be discussing in small groups:

Question 1 Why do you think that we always have this idea that the Church is just a building? What can we do together to get out of that habit, and to understand that we, joined together make Christ’s Church?

Question 2: How do you think that we can join together, outside of just FUEL, and North Park, to be Christ’s Church with other people in London, and the rest of Canada?

Question 3: What do you think would happen if we all stopped seeing the Church as a building, but as a group of people, that each of you are a part of?

Out Key  Verse:

27 All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it.

1 Corinthians 12:27 (NLT)

Here are three things you can be praying for this week:

1. That our students would know the importance of being a part of Christ’s Church, and discover their roles together.

2. That our leaders would be able to communicate this concept of the Church not being about the building, but about the people.

3. That as parents, you would discover your own role in Christ’s Church, and be able to radiate a passion for it towards your kids.

Thank you so much for investing in the lives of your Jr Highs each week!

Josh

more info

Sr High Parents Update – Sept 17th

Posted by on Sep 16, 2014 in Featured, Parents, Youth Workers | 0 comments

Sr HIgh Parents Night - Web Graphic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A letter to Parents,

I am 37 years old and I have been leading a youth ministry since I was 18.  For over half of my life, I have been working with teenagers and parents.  Ever since I was a teenager … I have been working with teenagers!  This year was monumental for me as I dropped my grade 6 son off at Jr. High and looked at the youth ministry through my own eyes as a youth pastor and as a parent.  It was a profound moment.  It hit me hard on the one hand because I felt really old. (ha ha)  And, on the other hand because God really stirred me to write a letter of appeal to the parents of the teenagers that I currently work with and to parents of teenagers in the churches across our country.  Please join me tomorrow night in the fellowship hall, as I share that letter with you and talk about this year of youth ministry ahead.

Together we are stronger,

 

Kevin Norcross

PS.  Here is a look at the small group material for this week.

 Sr High - Pursue God - Web Graphic

PURSUE GOD

Do you brush your teeth every day?

Sept 17th 2014

 

 

 

 

 

Main Thing …

  • We all spend time getting ready for our day.  Some eat breakfast, tie their shoes, and throw on a hat.  Others even go as far as brushing their teeth and throwing on some deodorant.  In the same way that we get ready physically for the day ahead, there are things that we can do to get ready Spiritually

 

 

Scratch the Surface …

  • High’s and lows
  • What is your morning routine like (breakfast or not)?  Does it include brushing your teeth!?!

 

 

 

 

Dig a Little Deeper…

  • What do you think it means to prepare spiritually for the day ahead?
  • What are some reasons why God would want us to spend time with Him every day?
  • What are some legit excuses why we would not do this every day?  How could we battle that?

 

Personal …

  • You could share about your own journey of daily time with God
  • You could talk about how you spend time with God and what works for you

 

Applications …

  • Pray with your group
  • Challenge your group to make some commitment to having a daily time with God

 

Key Scriptures …

 

 

 

John 10:10

“The thief comes only to steal kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.”

 

Matthew 22:37

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”

 

 

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