Kids are the best critics because they haven’t learned the subtle art of not offending others with brutal honesty. When you are boring they will call you on it. I remember one time I thought the lesson was going well. The kids were a bit non-responsive I figured they were tired…until one of the kids I was teaching stood up cupped his mouth with his hands and said “This is boring!” Ouch. It’s moments like that has forced me as someone who has communicated to kids for the past 18 years to always be looking for creative ways to communicate to kids. To give them truth in ways they aren’t always expecting. The keep the “This is boring” kids on the edge of their seats.
One of the ways we have done that over the years is called the “Self-Interview.” Basically you write a script and play both parts. The kids love this because they are on to your game they feel that they know something you don’t. They feel like they have insider info and pay closer attention.
There are few things more powerful and more profound a parent can do for their kids than pray for them.
“Men ought always to pray.” Luke 18:1
“I will that men pray everywhere.” 1 Timothy 2:1
I have a question to offer you. It is contained in three words, DO YOU PRAY? The question is one that none but you can answer. Whether you attend public worship or not, your minister knows. Whether you have family prayers or not your relations know. But whether you pray in private or not, is a matter between yourself and God.
All the children of God on earth are alike in this respect. From the moment there is any life and reality about their religion, they pray. Just as the first sign of the life of an infant when born into the world is the act of breathing, so the first act of men and women when they are born again is praying.
This is one of the common marks of all the elect of God, “They cry unto him day and night.” Luke 18:1. The Holy Spirit who makes them new creatures, works in them a feeling of adoption, and makes the cry, “Abba, Father.” Romans 8:15. The Lord Jesus, when he quickens them, gives them a voice and a tongue, and says to them, “Be dumb no more.” God has no dumb children. It is as much a part of their new nature to pray, as it is of a child to cry. They see their need of mercy and grace. They feel their emptiness and weakness. They cannot do other wise than they do. They must pray.
– JC Ryle
Prayer is not simply a good Idea for parents it’s absolutely essential. Bishop Ryle’s point is well taken.
Orange conference is very nostalgic for me. It’s the place where I first met up with the people who have become some of my closest friends. It was the first really large conference I ever attended. 6 years ago and it feels like yesterday. I ended up going 3 years in a row as a blogger and haven’t been able to attend the last three years due to conflicts in my schedule.
I thought I would take a bit of a different take with this post and tell you the unique aspects I miss most about Orange after a three-year absence.
- The tribe – Each conference has their own Eco system of regular attenders. I will attend most of the other National conferences this year defiantly miss my friends at Orange.
- Reggie’s Keynote – Orange has some of the best and the brightest out there. For me every year I personally enjoyed Reggie’s keynote most. Reggie is a thinker and strategist. Every chance I get to talk to Reggie I am challenged.
- The show – The production value of everything that takes place at Orange conference is second to none. It is big, exciting and fun.
- Family ministry from the church side of things – In my experience every conference out there has something they do really well. I think the thing that Orange Conference does better than anyone is talk about family ministry from the church side of things. This isn’t all they do but in my mind it’s what they do best.
I have been saying this the past 3 years but next year I really hope I can come back to Orange. I miss my friends.
Enter below for a chance to win a free registration to Orange conference.
In the book Creativity Inc, By Ed Catmull at one point he talked about the importance of protecting the new. He then quoted the amazing monologue delivered by Anton Ego in Ratatouille.
In many ways, the work of a critic is easy. We risk very little, yet enjoy a position over those who offer up their work and their selves to
our judgment. We thrive on negative criticism, which is fun to write and
to read. But the bitter truth we critics must face is that, in the
grand scheme of things, the average piece of junk is probably more
meaningful than our criticism designating it so. But there are times
when a critic truly risks something, and that is in the discovery and
defense of the new. The world is often unkind to new talent, new
creations. The new needs friends. Last night, I experienced something
new, an extra-ordinary meal from a singularly unexpected source. To say
that both the meal and its maker have challenged my preconceptions about
fine cooking is a gross understatement. They have rocked me to my core.
In the past, I have made no secret of my disdain for Chef Gusteau’s
famous motto: ‘Anyone can cook.’ But I realize, only now do I truly
understand what he meant. Not everyone can become a great artist, but a
great artist can come from anywhere. – Anton Ego
I have always been an innovative person who learns through iteration, trial and error. I find however as I grow older that I more easily stick to what I know because I know it works. The beauty of age is experience. The danger of age is becoming critical of the new. I meet many people who talk more about what they have done than what they are doing.
Being a critic is much less costly than being an artist. Left to ourselves we slip into the criticism of the new rather than become a friend of the new.
Yancy has a new praise party album coming out today. I received an advance copy and it is brilliant. My 2-year-old and 5-year-old listen to it daily. I love how Yancy is a role model for my girls that is more than positive she’s redemptive. When my wife puts on Little Praise Party for our girls in the car or at home it literally changes their attitudes, instantly. It’s crazy. What I love about Yancy is that she points my girls to Jesus. In a culture that is trying to get girls to find their worth in friends and their appearance if I can pour Jesus into the heart of my girls while they are young I’ll pay for that every day. But If you think her songs resonate with only girls you would be wrong, I love how write songs that boys would enjoy as well. There are several superhero songs on her album releasing today.
Personally what I enjoy from Yancy’s music is she always puts an old school song or two on her records. She gives them a new sound but keeps the simple Jesus centered truth firmly in place. On this new record that song is “I Love You Lord” simple profound and needs to be song by every generation.
I hope you support my friend Yancy and the great work she is doing if you are a parent or work with kids Yancy’s Little Praise Party “Taste and See” would be a brilliant addition to your kids worship collection. You get FREE SHIPPING with code: yancylovesme
If you are looking for something for your older kids check out Jesus Music Box
Here is the promo video of Yancy explaining what Little Praise Party is all about.