Help your teen through the storm

Want to connect on a deeper level with your teen?  Download this sheet and talk about life’s storms with them.  We all go through storms.  It’s those who are prepared who can stand strong through a storm.  Jesus taught His disciples a powerful lesson as he calmed a terrifying storm:  He is in control.

I have been impressed with these devotional handouts.  They are interactive, easy to follow, and they go hand in hand with our Sunday School lessons.  Better still, when you use them, you’ll often get to go deeper with your teen.  Let me know what you think.

Big Youth Weekend

This coming weekend is a big one for RYM.  Take a look…

Welcome to RYM Pool Party – for 6th-8th graders AND their families.  RSVP here.

Promotion Sunday – students meet their new teachers in the Barn.  Parents of 6th graders are invited to join for a Bible presentation.

Youth Barn night…with 9 Square – for all youth.  5-8pm, cookout provided.  Bring a side dish and a sidekick (a friend).

And beyond this weekend…
Fuel – have you registered yet?
  Sign up here.
Fuel is undergoing major changes and has great things in store!  Learn more here.

Waves of Grace – WoG is starting on Sep. 4 and 11.  Learn more here.  Sign up here.

The History of Words with Friends

Do you know how Words with Friends became popular?  This sheet will give you the low-down.  Not only that, it will begin great dialogue about our own speech and the difficulty of taming the tongue.

“Dear God, Help me pass this test!”

You’ve probably seen the bumper sticker:  “As long as there are tests, there WILL BE prayer in schools!”  This week our youth are discussing prayer as part of a six-week study on spiritual disciplines.  Our series takes place during the Sunday School hour.

How is your prayer life? Use this discussion sheet to bring up the topic of prayer at home with your teen.  Take the time to pray more together as a family.  One great way to do this is to get the prayer sheets from church, and pray for people throughout the week.

Core Beliefs – Creator God

This Sunday, the youth begin their Core Beliefs study.  What is Core Beliefs?  It is a series that covers the beliefs that are so central to our faith that they define us as Christians.  We cover 3 of those 6 beliefs in the fall every year, and then 3 more in the spring…well, February.

Our focus this week is on Creator God.  We do not have a family discussion sheet for this one.  What we do have is a set of study notes.  This is part of what our teachers use, and it is also distributed to our older youth.  Note that toward the end there are implications of this belief – the “so what” regarding Creation.  Use those or even the FAQs at the end to get into discussion at home.

We’ve bought a lie!

We have bought a lie.  In our society, we tend to believe that our decisions are our own, personal choices, and the don’t affect others.  In our study on holiness, the youth will investigate 1 Peter 2:9-12 to see that God’s call for our obedience impacts the world around us.  It is actually an evangelism tool.

Take the time to discuss holiness with your teen, and even talk about how your family can be a light to your own neighbors!  Here is a discussion sheet to get you started.

Holy Football!

A few years ago, my wife, Karen and I did one of the most dangerous and foolhardy things imaginable.  We went to a Steelers/Ravens Monday night football game IN Pittsburgh while wearing Ravens jerseys!  It wasn’t too difficult to feel out of place, especially when a guy twice my size looked at his equally husky pals, then at me, and said, “Dead bird.”  There was a grim certainty in his voice that told me he wasn’t kidding.  When we were in overtime, I remember telling Karen, “If the Ravens win, we zip up our jackets, put our heads down, and slowly shuffle out.”

As Christians, we should feel even more out of place than Karen and I did at that game.  Our first Sunday School lesson of the school year begins a six week series called The Other Life.  This Sunday, youth will learn that God calls His followers to live a life of holiness apart from the world and their former sinful lives.

I challenge you to bring the discussion home by using a family discussion sheet.  Feel free to share my story above, too, or tell of a similar time when you stuck out like a sore thumb!  Family talks about these subjects is the best way to help youth internalize and live out what they learn on Sunday mornings!

Youth PRIME study

On September 2, the youth will begin a year-long study called PRIME – Putting God first in our lives.  This study itself is part of a 6-year program through God’s Word for our youth Sunday School program (9:40am).   … (more)

Worry much?

Sometimes we do a great deal of worrying about things that don’t matter…okay, a LOT of times!  This topic will be brought up in youth Sunday School this week.  Take some time to discuss it as a family, too.  Whenever we worry, we show a lack of trust in God.  Perhaps you can have a family pact that you make – any time someone is worrying, other family members can point it out!

By the way, this is the last Sunday that youth will meet with their current teachers.  Promotion Sunday isn’t until Aug. 26, but youth will have their own “mass class” in the barn for the first 3 weeks in August.  Parents, consider taking the time to thank a teacher for their investment into the life of your teen.

Here is this week’s discussion sheet:  Family Discussion Sheet

We will not have discussion sheets again until September.


If you aren’t sure what that means, check out this week’s family discussion sheet.  Our Sunday School lesson covers Daniel 1, where Daniel and his friends remained faithful to God in the face of opposition.  Take the time to discuss with your youth ways that they “swim upstream” in our culture.  You might be surprised at the conversation that takes place. This subject touches on several issues, such as the existence of God, atheism, bullying, culture, and worldview.

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