Tuesday, July 29, 2008


At our camps last month, we had a special missions emphasis on Wednesday night. The evangelist talked about missions and we had some prayer time to focus on reaching out. I brought us back to our seats and told a Bible story before taking a STL offering. Can you mention the story and where in the Bible it could be found?

Monday, July 28, 2008

Monday - Life Lessons

Last week, I had the awesome opportunity to pinch hit and speak for my brother in law at his Jr. High Camp in New Hampshire. It was a blast! I used to be a Jr. High Pastor, so it was good to go back to my roots and minister to Jr. Highers from the pulpit. I had a very short notice, but I had saved much of my sermons and illustrations from my pastoring days so I had plenty of material to fall back on. I considered myself a good planner, or so I thought . . .

As we neared the campgrounds, I was amazed by the beauty of Vermont and New Hampshire. Mountains, lakes, trees; it was incredible. I told my brother in law that we'd call as we get close, and I was waiting until the last turn to make that call. When I turned, I picked up my phone, and saw NO SERVICE. I drove for another 30 minutes up the road and still NO SERVICE. Long story short, we were completely lost and it took us a lot of time to find the campground, arriving late. Oh how I wish I would have made the call at the last pitstop, pretty earlier, when I had plenty of time.

It might seem like a nuisance to plan ahead, but when you get lost, you'll wish that you would have made the call. I encourage you to look down the road at the rest of your day, week, month and see what you might plan through in order to be ready when the moment comes.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Time out!

Hey guys, just a quick note to let you know that Pastor Toby is in New Hampshire speaking at the Southern New England Junior High camp. Let's keep him lifted up in prayer during this week!
My profoundest apologies to all of those who have been checking in for your daily blog devo... blog will resume as normally scheduled next week!
Wow...I can feel the anticipation building already!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Friday - Where is THAT in NE?

Unfortunately, we didn't have any comments for the Bible Trivia from Tuesday. Maybe we'll do better next time.

Today, I'd like to see if you can tell me what building this is, on our campground in Lexington, NE? It's a very popular stop, especially after our services at night...

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Thursday - Testimonies

I have a good friend from my high school named Scott Bentley. We played football and basketball together, and hung out countless hours at each other's house. I tried to bring him to church a few times, but he wasn't interested. After high school, we lost touch with each other.

A few weeks ago, he found me on facebook and sent me the message below. Sometimes, you think that the people you tried to witness to who didn't accept Christ were lost forever. This goes to show that God can still use your witness long after you're gone:

The past year and a half truly has been amazing and it's too long to tell in detail over email, so here are the highlights -- Accepted Christ 4 years ago- Asked Him to take over the throne of my life 18 months ago, because I stunk at trying to live life under my own strength.- Hurricane Katrina cleanup through my church in March '07- Met Angie online in April '07- Angie was up in Omaha for a support-raising trip in May '07. We hit it off and started dating.- Engaged in October '07- Moved to Orlando in Jan '08. Lived with a family she knew. Campus Crusade gave me a 5 month contract to work in their IT dept.- Starting New Staff Training today in Orlando to become a full time missionary with Campus Crusade.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Wednesday - Leader's Corner - The Season

2 Timothy 4:2 - Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.

Last night, I was working out, enjoying only my 7th day at home this summer. We've had an incredible camp season, but I hadn't been in Grand Island much because of it. As soon as I walked into the house, my brother in law called from New Hampshire. He's the DYD of the Southern New England district, which includes the states of Massachusettes, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. He is in the middle of his camp season, and he was calling in a dilemna. His jr. high camp is next week, and his jr. high camp speaker called and had to cancel. He was wondering if there was any way that we could come out early and speak at camp.


We were planning on heading towards the East Coast this coming Sunday. I was going to meet with a youth pastor in Lincoln tomorrow. My son was doing a special class on making and editing movies that was supposed to last through Friday. I was enjoying a few days at home, and a few days of normalcy. But, when God calls, you must be ready.

So.... I am writing this from my in-laws house in Bellevue, late Wednesday night. Tomorrow morning, we'll head out at about 4:30 and start towards Toledo, eventually arriving in New Hampshire by Sunday night, ready to speak at a Jr. High Camp. I'm exhausted, and excited, all at the same time.

The Bible tells us to be ready in season and out of season, but the truth is, there is not out of season with God.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Tuesday - Bible Trivia

Last week, on Friday, I posted a picture for our segment WHERE IS THAT IN NE? Unfortunately, we didn't get any comments to reply. The picture is the lake at Camp Arrowhead, our popular afternoon destination at summer camps, just outside of Lexington,NE.

We have another contest today! In the Bible, there is a man of encouragement named Barnabas in the New Testament. He was a favorite companion of Paul on his missionary journeys. The question today is: What country was Barnabas originally from?:

A. Italy
B. Greece
C. Turkey
D. Cyprus

Remember, a random drawing of all the comments answered correctly will win the $2 prize this week, so keep replying! Have a great day.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Monday - Life Lessons - Kitchen at Camp

This last week, I had the opportunity to work with Todd Morhmann on the rec staff at Family Camp. As many of you know, we just finished up 4 straight weeks of camp in June, and many people already had the privilege of working with Todd, but I got to see a side of him that I've never seen before.

Not only were we responsible to do recreation, but we also had to do the dishes for every meal. It wore me down incredibly fast, but Todd was faithful to show up early and work until everything was finished. Then, on Sunday, he left early, but only to drive students back to Norfolk, and then lead his youth group that night. And this was after feeling sick all day, and staying up with the rec staff the night before until 1:00am playing in the pool.

Todd was a great example of a true servant/leader. He never complained, did his job to the best of his ability, and kept a great attitude the whole time. Todd finished 5 weeks of camp, and was sad to go. I was impressed by his fortitude and hope that I can be more like him in the future.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Friday - Where is that in NE?

First of all, our winner from Tuesday's Bible Trivia challenge was HolyBibleTrivia.org with the correct answer of a cherubim with a flaming sword. Great job!

Today, our challenge is to tell me where this picture was taken in NE. Anyone that's been to our camps over the summers of the last two years should be able to get this one easily. It's a popular recreation destination if you'd like to ride a horse, walk a trail, or paddle in a canoe. It's just 3 miles away from our campground and we take a bus full of students out there each day. They are owned by the 7th Day Adventist church and we have a good relationship with them. Where is it? (remember, a random drawing of those that comment back correctly will give the winner $2 towards any NE Youth Ministries item of their choice)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Thursday - Testimonies

Here is a testimony from Kevin Jacobs, youth pastor at Omaha Southside:

Two weeks after camp, I had our campers give their camp testimonies and 1 girl got saved that night as a result.And then last week, 2 girls were back for the first time in a month or so and after seeing all the spiritual changes in our campers via worship, they got saved!! So we have had 3 kids saved in the last two weeks. Camp is still going strong at SouthSide!!

And one more testimony from a student at camp, Katelyn:

When i was 3 i was in a really bad car accident, suffering a bad injury to the head. Well the doctor said i had 3 days to live. But every day and night my mom cried and prayed and was talking to God for me. The day I was supposed to die, the doctor came in and said that I was going to be ok. My mom drop to her knees, raising her hands in the air to thank God. I'm now 14 with metal plates in my head, and my parents have constantly been trying to pay the medical bills from when I was a kid. When I was at camp, my mom said she was going through hard financial times. I prayed for her every night during worship. I called her Thursday night and she said that she got alot of money and we paid off our bills. Praise God!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Wednesday Leader's Corner - Going to our leaders for help!

1 Samuel 3:5-6 "And he ran to Eli and said, 'Here I am, you called me.' But Eli said, 'I did not call; go back and lie down.'"

In this chapter we see the story of when God first spoke to Samuel. It took 4 different times of God calling, before Samuel finally connected with Him. The first three times, he kept running into Eli and waking him up. One can see Eli, an old man, frustrated that his young apprentice kept waking him up. When he finally suggested that God might be calling Samuel, it was a moment of wisdom, and a moment of relief.

We tend to look at Samuel as a naive young man that should have recognized God's call earlier in this situation. But how many times has God tried to get our attention, and we didn't realize it until much later, or maybe, not at all. Many of us might feel like God never speaks to us. The truth is, God is probably speaking to us more than we realize, if we would just turn off all the other noise in our lives and listen.

I applaud Samuel for waking Eli up. He didn't know God was calling him, and so he did what he was taught, he went to his leader. Even in the middle of the night, Samuel reported to Eli, ready to do what he needed to do as a servant. He might have been afraid to wake up Eli, but he did what he knew was right, what he had been taught to do.

We need to be ready to serve at all times, even when we're tired, busy with other things, or when it isn't that convenient. We also need to go to our leaders in times of confusion, and allow God to speak to us through them as well. God puts leaders in our lives to speak to us, and bring us to a place to where we can hear His voice on our own as well. Then, eventually, we'll be the leader, leading others to that intimate place with God.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Tuesday Bible Trivia

Found in Genesis is the story of Adam and Eve. God made the Garden of Eden for them to enjoy. They could have anything they wanted, except fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

Satan tempted them to eat the fruit and they accepted his invitation. God punished them and sent them out from the Garden. He set up a barrier so they would never be able to enter the Garden again. Sometimes, God sets up things in our lives to keep us out of areas where He doesn't want us to go. What was it that God set up in front of the entrance to the Garden of Eden?

Monday, July 7, 2008

New Blog Schedule

Hello everyone!

In an attempt to get more consistant with blogging, I've put together a weekly schedule for the remainder of this year:

Mondays - LIFE LESSONS = Little snippets of lessons learned from situations in life. I'll also post these on my myspace blog weekly (http://www.myspace.com/tobydyd)

Tuesdays - BIBLE TRIVIA = I'll post a question and seek answers from your comments. A random selection of those who comment with the right answer will be declared the winner. They will win $2.00 towards any NE youth ministry item of their choice(including videos, t-shirts, events, etc.). You have to answer by Friday of the same week! I'll post the winner with my blogs on Friday

Wednesdays - LEADER'S CORNER = These are ideas/devotionals for leaders of all ages, from my personal study of God's Word. I'll also post this at the leader's corner link of my website as often as possible (http://www.youth.neag.org/)

Thursdays - WEEKLY TESTIMONIES = Praise reports gathered from people all over the state as I travel and minister. Maybe your story will get posted someday???? I'll also post these on my facebook profile wall as often as possible (http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=672420610)

Fridays - WHERE IN NE? = I'll post a picture with a short caption, and you'll have to guess (through comments) where in NE it is found from the choices I give. A random selection from those who comment with the correct answer will be declared the winner. They will win $2.00 towards any NE youth ministry item of their choice. You have to answer by Tuesday of the following week. I'll post the winner with my blogs on Tuesday.

We'll kick it all off tomorrow with some Bible Trivia. See ya then!