Wednesday, July 31, 2013

1). Song of the Day: Mark Schultz - One Day

2). Blog Entry: Leaders Corner - 20 Ways to Reach Twenty-Somethings
     (from the book The Catalyst Leader, by Brad Lomenick)

Give them freedom with their schedules
Provide them projects, not a career
Create a family environment
Cause is important
Embrace social media
Accept that they are tech savvy
Lead each person uniquely
Make authenticity and honesty the standard for your organization
Understand they are not interested in climbing the corporate ladder
 Give them opportunities early with major responsibility
 They want the larger win, not the personal small
 Meet their desire for partnering and collaberation
 They’re not working for a personality
 Provide opportunities for mentoring, learning, and discipleship
 Coach them and encourage them
 Create opportunities for quality time, individually and corporately
 Hold them accountable
 Grasp that the sky is the limit in their minds
 Recognize their values, not just their strengths
 Provide a system that creates stability

3). Ministry of the Day: NE Youth Pastors Retreat - Join us Aug 22-24th in Grand Island for a great time with youth leaders from across our state. Hotel blocks of room will expire after tomorrow, Aug 1st.

4). Link of the Day: Things - Task Management Software for Mac

5). Quote of the Day: 'All I have seen teaches me to trust the creator for all I have not seen.' - Ralph Waldo Emerson

6). Movie of the Day: Last night of Worship at Wisconsin Jr. High Camp Last Week

7). Miscellaneous: Today is Uncommon Instruments Awareness Day. It is also the birthday of my sister-in-law Kary Whearty, a distinction she shares with Bill Callahan, American football coach, from 1956. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that the oldest recorded eruption of Mount Fuji occurred in 781 AD.

Riding the Ferris Wheel in Omaha at the PK Retreat earlier this month

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Ryan Stevenson - Holding Nothing Back

2). Blog Entry: Caption Contest (click on the pic below to submit a caption)



3). Ministry of the Day: Single Adult Ministries - Check out our National Ministries for Single Young Adults across the US.

4). Link of the Day: Skrawlr - The 60 Second way to get a more organized online life.

5). Quote of the Day: 'In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on.' - Robert Frost

6). Movie of the Day: Creative Water-slide

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Cheesecake Day. It is also the birthday of Galen Rasmussen (pastor in Geneva, NE), Cory Demmel (youth pastor in Bellevue, NE), and Jason Carter (associate pastor in Omaha, NE), a distinction they share with Henry Ford, American businessman from 1863. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that Jimmy Hoffa disappeared from a parking lot in Michigan, never to be seen or heard from again, in 1975.

Monday, July 29, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Ghost Ship - Mediator

2). Blog Entry: Life Lessons
     At our Nebraska camps, we have a tradition on the last night called the Great Escape. Though we don't do it at every camp, several of our camps use this as the final challenge for our teams in the week. Certain leaders, myself included, hide somewhere outside on the campgrounds at midnight. Our students are released to find them within 30 minutes. The teams that find leaders are awarded points, and then our champion team is crowned for the week. I had prided myself in finding great spots to hide and not being found by students, though it doesn't always happen. I know some spots that are genius, absolutely certain to keep me hidden. But after working with my teenage son as a camper this year, it occurred to me that I should change my thinking. Though I enjoy 'beating' the students in the game by staying hidden and unfound, it would actually be more fun for them if someone finds me and receives points. So, is it more about my enjoyment, or the students'? That question caused me to pause, and it should for you as well. The events and activities we do are not for my personal benefit, but for them. I should strive to keep them as the priority, and not my own comfort or desires. This applies not only to games and activities, but also to service styles, messages, worship, calendars, etc. When I can align the two together (my desires as a leader and the students desires), that is the perfect place to be.

3). Ministry of the Day: WNCC Chi Alpha - Check out the college ministry on the campus of our school in Scottsbluff, NE.

4). Link of the Day: Celera Group - Check out the free resources provided through this group providing coaching to leaders across our nation.

5). Quote of the Day: 'That which does not kill us makes us stronger.' - Friedrich Nietzsche

6). Movie of the Day: Brazil's Got Talent

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Chicken Wing Day. It is also the birthday of Benito Mussolini, Italian politician and dictator of Italy from 1883. Finally, it is the anniversary of Georgene and Norm McCarthy (pastors in Grand Island, NE), and the day that the International Atomic Energy Agency was established in 1957.

PK's on the rail in the wave pool at the PK Retreat in Omaha earlier this month

Friday, July 26, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Beckah Shae - Turbo Style

2). Leader Profile - Kevin Ashbee



POSITION: Children's Leader at Flatland Church in Omaha
FAMILY: Married to Stephanie
HISTORY: Grew up in Pennsylvania
HOBBIES: Biking, Traveling

3). Ministry of the Day: NE Jr Bible Quiz - Make plans to join us as our league begins this fall, teaching kids to memorize the Word of God.

4). Link of the Day: PixelPipe - Publish media to the online service of your choice.

5). Quote of the Day: 'If you can dream it, you can do it.' - Walt Disney

6). Movie of the Day: Soccer Head Shot

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Chili Dog Day. It is also the birthday of Kevin Ashbee (above), a distinction he shares with Stanley Kubrick, American director from 1928. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that the movie Alice in Wonderland premiered in 1951.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Jars of Clay - Inland

2). Blog Entry: Bible Commentary - 1 Samuel 11,12 - Notes on God's Plan

3). Ministry of the Day: UNL Campus Church - Check out this vibrant growing ministry on the campus of our state college in Lincoln.

4). Link of the Day: Photo Marker - Make a personalized golfball marker for a friend or family member.

5). Quote of the Day: 'Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.' - Francis of Assisi

6). Movie of the Day: Morning Rec at Wisconsin Jr. High Camp

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Merry-Go Round Day. It is also the birthday of Tom Burkholder (pastor in Ord, NE), a distinction he shares with Walter Payton, American football player, from 1954. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day when Wyoming became a United States territory in 1868.

Playing 'Chicken' at PK Retreat last weekend in Omaha, NE

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Amy Grant - If I Could See

2). Leaders Corner - Visionary Leaders are (from The Catalyst Leader)


- Optimistic about the future
- Focused on the best in people
- Never satisfied but always content
- consumed with making tomorrow better than today
- accepting of change
- inclusive, not exclusive
- personally bought in


3). Ministry of the Day: BGMC - Check out this powerful missions program for kids in Nebraska and our nation.

4). Link of the Day: White Pages - Search for people online

5). Quote of the Day: 'If you're trying to achieve, there will be roadblocks. I've had them; everybody has had them. But obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.' - Michael Jordan

6). Movie of the Day: Amazing Child Guitar Solo

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Drive-Thru Day. It is also the birthday of Kerry Callaway (pastor's wife in Gering, NE), a distinction she shares with Alexandre Dumas, French writer, from 1802. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that Lance Armstrong won his seventh consecutive Tour de France in 2005.

PK Group at Fun Plex WaterPark in Omaha, last weekend

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

1). Song of the Day: Spoken - Calm the Storm

2). Blog Entry: Caption Contest (holdover from last week) (click on the pic to submit a caption)



3). Ministry of the Day: UNK Chi Alpha - Check out the College Ministry on the campus of our college in Kearney, NE.

4). Link of the Day: ScripSmart - Gift Card Ratings

5). Quote of the Day: 'I must have a prodigious quantity of mind; it takes me as much as a week sometimes to make it up.' - Mark Twain

6). Movie of the Day: Dove Real Beauty Sketches

7). Miscellaneous: Today is Gorgeous Grandma Day. It is also the birthday of Mike Washburn (pastor in Fremont, NE), a distinction he shares with Pee Wee Reese, American baseball player, from 1918. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that the Province of Canada was created by the Act of Union in 1840.

Monday, July 22, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Random Hero - Mercy

2). Blog Entry: Leaders Corner
     While speaking at the Montana Jr. Teen Camp, we played a game called Amazon Women. The boys all link together in the middle of the field, with the main leaders (worth the most points) in the middle. Once assembled the girls come out and try to pull the boys apart, dragging them back to their assigned areas for points. I felt confident because two of the strongest male leaders were right in front of me, and I knew that the girls would have to get through them to get to me. Unbeknownst to me though, they had pacted together to allow their teams of girls to pull them off rather easily, getting to me much quicker than expected. The girls got to the leaders in the middle for the first time in years, all because of what some called betrayal and others called strategy. Sometimes, when we feel the safest, we let our guard down and are surprised when troubles arise. Even in positions of strength, it's important for us to stay cautious and ready for whatever this world may bring our way.

3). Ministry of the Day: MegaSports Camp - A dynamic community based VBS for churches involving sports and leaders from your city.

4). Link of the Day: Flavors - Make a homepage in minutes.

5). Quote of the Day: 'We shall never know all the good that a simple smile can do.' - Mother Teresa

6). Movie of the Day: Iphone Domino Fall

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Rat Catcher's Day. It is also the birthday of Bob Dole, American attorney and politician, from 1923. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that Jeffrey Dahmer was arrested in Milwaukee after police discover human remains in his apartment, in 1991.

Brian Korell on the waterslides at PK Retreat in Omaha this past weekend

Friday, July 19, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Hillsong United - Oceans

2). Leader Profile - Lance Loven



POSITION: Senior Pastor in York, NE
HISTORY: Former Chi Alpha director for NE out of Kearney
FAMILY: Married to Angela with 4 children
HOBBIES: Worship (One Bad Pig), Star Wars, Reading

3). Ministry of the Day: NYM Stage Rental - Contact us to use our specially made stage pieces for your upcoming outreaches and events

4). Link of the Day: Postbox - A better way to do email.

5). Quote of the Day: 'The future starts today, not tomorrow.' - Pope John Paul II

6). Movie of the Day: Disney's Tree of Life

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Get to Know Your Customers Day. It is also the birthday of 1981 – Nenê, Brazilian footballer, from 1981. Finally, it is the anniversary of Mark and Paula Oberbeck (pastors in Grand Island, NE), a distinction they share with when the Great Fire of Rome began to burn in the merchant area of Rome and soon burned completely out of control in 64 AD.

PK Retreat this weekend in Omaha
(click on the pic to see the gallery)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Britt Nicole - Ready or Not

2). Bible Commentary: 1 Samuel 9,10 - Notes on God's Plan

3). Ministry of the Day: PK Retreat - Today begins the first day of our weekend retreat with Nebraska Pastor's Kids in Omaha.

4). Link of the Day: Cenabo - Create, edit and publish your menus online and share them with the world.

5). Quote of the Day: 'Destiny is no matter of chance. It is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved.' - William Jennings Bryan

6). Movie of the Day: National Anthem - Boston Bruins (shortly after marathon bombing)

7). Miscellaneous: Today is International Mandela Day. It is also the birthday of Kent Anderson (NE Rural Compassion Home Missionary), a distinction he shares with Red Skelton, American actor and comedian from 1913. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that the Army uprising in Spanish Morocco started the Spanish Civil War in 1936.

Praying for the Warriner's at their last camp as Camp Director this summer

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

1). Song of the Day: Wess Morgan - You Paid It All

2). Blog Entry: Leaders Corner
     Jr. Highers love to experience fun, High Schoolers want to be cool, and Young Adults want to be real. In all areas of ministry, people want someone who is authentic; not putting on a show. From our Youth Pastors July book of the month through Facebook, The Catalyst Leader, here are some tips for maintaining your authenticity in an increasingly fake world:


1. Practice self awareness (be vulnerable, you're not perfect)
2. Question yourself (before you question others)
3. Go from self promotion to storytelling (share successes and failures)
4. Don't create a digital alter ego (the same person with people as you are online)
5. Laugh at yourself (join the crowd)
6. Build a support network (no man is an island, especially in God's plan for the church)
7. Be interested over interesting  (listen and ask questions)

3). Ministry of the Day: Faith Case - a dynamic curriculum for Children's Ministries with a spy theme.

4). Link of the Day: Knoword - A creative game online to enhance your voculabury; great for speakers and presenters.

5). Quote of the Day: 'In this bright future you can't forget your past.' - Bob Marley

6). Movie of the Day: Compliment Grams

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Yellow Pig Day. It is also the birthday of Tim Boatright (new pastor in Falls City, NE), a distinction he shares with Kim Whitlock (Former DYD wife of NE) and James Cagney, American actor, from 1899. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that Disneyland was dedicated and opened by Walt Disney in Anaheim, California in 1955.

Mister 9 Square at Jr. High Camp last month

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Fit for a King - Skin & Bones

2). Blog Entry: Caption Contest (click on the pic below to submit a caption)



3). Ministry of the Day: Chadron State Chi Alpha - Check out our College Ministry on the campus of this school in Northwest Nebraska.

4). Link of the Day: Thoughtboxes - Thoughtboxes makes it easy to get organized, complete tasks, and collaborate.

5). Quote of the Day: 'The distinction between the past, present and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.' - Albert Einstein

6). Movie of the Day: Drive Thru Prank

7). Miscellaneous: Today is Global Hug your Kid Day. It is also the birthday of Loran Sandoz (youth leader in Taylor, NE), a distinction he shares with Roald Amundsen, Norwegian explorer, first to reach the South Pole and North Pole, from 1872. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that Iraqi President Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr resigned and was replaced by Saddam Hussein in 1979.

Monday, July 15, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Andrew Peterson - Carry the Fire

2). Blog Entry: Life Lessons
     Last week I had the great privilege to be the speaker at a Montana Jr. Teen Camp. Robin Liebe, the DYD's wife, was very gracious and showered me with gifts. During one of the services, before I had the chance to speak, she offered me a nice Glacier Bible Camp fleece blanket. I mentioned that it would be nice but I wasn't sure if I had enough space in my luggage for the gift. Later, spontaneous testimonies in worship led a student to talk about how they had been homeless and needy before camp. After the student went back into the altar area for worship, I saw Robin find this young lady and give her the blanket as a gift. Far better for her to bless the girl in need than to bless someone like me. We laughed about it later, but what a great example of love and generosity.

3). Ministry of the Day: Elife - Help Elementary students develop a strategy for reaching their friends and living a great life for God in their schools and community.

4). Link of the Day: Travel Math - Travel Math is an online trip calculator that helps you find answers quickly.

5). Quote of the Day: 'It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves.' - William Shakespeare

6). Movie of the Day: Foggy Mountain Breakdown

7). Miscellaneous: Today is Gummi Worm Day. It is also the birthday of Jill Fahrenbruck (Chi Alpha leader in Scottsbluff, NE), a distinction she shares with 1606 – Rembrandt, Dutch painter from 1606. Finally, it is the anniversary of John and Stephanie Wedige (children's pastors in Grand Island, NE), a distinction they share with when the Nintendo Entertainment System, the best-selling game console of its time, was released in Japan in 1983.

The great 'Amazon Women' game from MT Jr. Teen Camp last week

Friday, July 12, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Hillsong United - Oceans

2). Leader's Profile - Phil Heider



POSITION - Children's Pastor at Grand Island Northridge Church
HISTORY - Graduate from Southwestern University, from Lincoln, NE
FAMILY - Married to Sarah with no kids (yet, at least)
HOBBIES - Baseball, Video Editing and Graphic Design, Plays Ukelele

3). Ministry of the Day: Teen Bible Quiz - Join in with other groups from across the state as we challenge our students to memorize entire books of the Bible

4). Link of the Day: Rizwan Scholars - Help us build our nation by facilitating quality education in young scholars achieving excellence in academics.

5). Quote of the Day: 'The desire of gold is not for gold. It is for the means of freedom and benefit.' - Ralph Waldo Emerson

6). Movie of the Day: Duck Tales 

7). Miscellaneous: Today is the last day of MT Jr. Teen Camp for me, and National Simplicity Day. It is also the birthday of Doug Everaard (DYD of Oklahoma), a distinction he shares with Henry David Thoreau, American writer and philosopher, from 1817. Finally, it is the anniversary of when former United States Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton died a day after being shot in a duel in 1804.



Thursday, July 11, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Manafest - Overboard

2). Blog Entry: Bible Commentary - 1 Samuel 6,7 - Notes on God's Plan

3). Ministry of the Day: Nebraska Missionaries - Check out a listing of our NE missionaries. More to come soon! (some can't be published online due to security risks)

4). Link of the Day: Eventbrite - Online event registration and selling of tickets

5). Quote of the Day: 'People demand freedom of speech as a compensation for the freedom of thought which they seldom use.' - Soren Kierkegaard

6). Movie of the Day: Afternoon Rec at MT Jr. Teen Camp

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Slurpee Day. It is also the birthday of 1981 – Andre Johnson, American football player and Houston Texan from 1981. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that Martin Frobisher first spotted Greenland in 1576.

Glacier National Park, during MT Jr. Teen Camp this week

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Javen - You are my God

2). Blog Entry: Leaders Corner
     Every month, our Nebraska Youth Pastors are encouraged to read a book together with each other on our Facebook group here. Earlier, we read through Sustainable Youth Ministries. Here is a list of 'stuck' church questions:


Can you just give me some good ideas? - The thought is that if they just had committed parents, a committed pastor, a gym, better couches, etc. they'd be fine. Good ideas don't mean much without a good system in place.
Can you keep us from failing? - Anyone that wants to just do good enough is more than likely never going to achieve it. Aim high.
Do you understand how different we are? - The thought is that they have it different than everyone else (multiple schools, youth packed schedules, high level performance schools, no volunteers, etc.) Though we each face unique situations, most are common across the United States in different regions.
Will you help my church understand that ministry isn’t about numbers? - But to some degree it is. We want souls saved, we need a budget to work with, we must be accountable to our leaders. You'll never hear a church this is reaching their goals say it isn't about numbers.
Can you get me out of these political games? - All jobs and callings in life have this challenge. Rather than oppose it, get involved and do it right.

3). Ministry of the Day: 2013 NE STL Projects - Check out a list of all the current projects we are striving to fill with STL funds through Nebraska Youth Ministries this year

4). Link of the Day: Slidefinder - Find the best backgrounds and images for your visual presentations to groups.

5). Quote of the Day: 'If you want total security, go to prison. There you're fed, clothed, given medical care and so on. The only thing lacking... is freedom.' - Dwight D. Eisenhower

6). Movie of the Day: Odd Facts about US Presidents

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Don't Step on a Bee Day. It is also the birthdays of Byron Riddle (minister in Lincoln, NE), and Troy Vandament (pastor in Papillion, NE), a distinction they share with John Calvin, French theologian and pastor, from 1509. Finally, it is the anniversary of when the former Panamanian leader Manuel Noriega was sentenced to 40 years in prison for drug and racketeering violations in 1992.

Smashing Watermelons at NE Jr. High Camp last month

Buenos Dias from El Salvador!!

We are having an amazing time and God is doing some amazing things here!! We've experienced numerous salvations, healings and even an earthquake.  36 of us made our way down on Friday the 5th and we jumped right in with a full day of ministry training on Saturday.  Sunday we were able to attend service at the Dream Center and then did a street program in the evening!  For those of you reading that don't know what we're doing, we are working with King's Castle Ministries which has been in existence since 1989 and is an intense evangelization and discipleship program for children and youth.  Gangs are a huge problem here in El Salvador causing tons of violence and murders, but the hope of KC is to catch the youth for Christ before the gangs do!

So far we have done 17 programs on the streets and in the schools and have seen the favor of God all over us and all over the work we are doing!  We have prayed for several imdividuals who have been sick I'm body but one in particular was a young man in a high school. He shared with a team member of ours that he was recently in a play in which he had fallen and hurt his back severally and his knee as well.  So Stephen began to pray!  After his first prayer God completely healed the knee, but the back was still in a lot of pain, so they prayed again.  After the second prayer the young man's back was completely free of pain!! PTL!

With all the great things that are happening it does make me sad to let you know that we do have and have had several people sick so of you could pray with us that God will give us supernatural strength and health to finish out the week that we have left to do great things for him we would appreciate it!

I will try and update again in a few days!! Thanks for all the prayers!! God Bless!

Pastor Matt and the El Salvador AIM team!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Jamie Grace - Hold Me

2). Blog Entry: Caption Contest (click on the pic below to submit a caption)



3). Ministry of the Day: STL 2013 - Our main project focus is Kindles for church planters in India this year.

4). Link of the Day: Find the Best - Unbiased data-driven comparisons of business

5). Quote of the Day: 'For to be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.' - Nelson Mandela

6). Movie of the Day: Wolf Sanctuary 

7). Miscellaneous: Today is Ramadan, a Muslim Holiday. It is also the birthday of Jennifer Cattnach (youth leader in Chadron, NE), a distinction she shares with Brian Dennehy, American actor, from 1938. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that King Henry VIII of England annulled his marriage to his fourth wife, Anne of Cleves, from 1540.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 14.3

Just landed in KC! Time to collect our bags and catch our bus to Lincoln! Happy days! All is well!

Nebradka AIM 2013: Day 14.2

We have arrived in Chicago and boarded our flight to Kansas City! All is well!

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Decyfer Down - Forever with You

2). Blog Entry - Life Lessons
     Yesterday, I had a devotion from 1 Corinthians 12, where it mentions we are all a part of the body of Christ, each with his own roles but all with the same purpose, empowered by the same Spirit. Later in the day, as I was meeting with a youth leader from Omaha, I had the opportunity to talk about it in regard to his relationship with others in his church. Whenever we read the Word, we should look for immediate ways to apply it to our lives.

3). Ministry of the Day: Junior Bible Quiz - Join other churches this coming school year as we challenge our students to memorize the Word of God in this fun and competitive way. Schedule and new registration forms available at the link above.

4). Link of the Day: Wikia - Thousands of wiki's at your fingertips - wiki communities for everyone!

5). Quote of the Day: 'Freedom prospers when religion is vibrant and the rule of law under God is acknowledged.' - Ronald Reagan

6). Movie of the Day: Basketball Star/Crossing Guard

7). Miscellaneous: Today is International Town Crier's Day. It is also the birthday of Stephanie Wedige (children's leader in Grand Island, NE), a distinction she shares with John D. Rockefeller, American businessman, from 1839. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that the Space Shuttle Atlantis was launched in the final mission of the U.S. Space Shuttle program in 2011.

Muddy Gaga Ball from Jr. High Camp in Nebraska last month

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 14.1

Travel Day!  We have arrived in Dublin, made it through security and arrived at our gate!  All is well!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 13

Short post...  Fantastic day at church!  We had about 150 visitors attend from our Kids Week locations!  Praise The Lord!  This afternoon, we toured the north coast.  We're back at the Halls now saying goodbye/see you later to our local friends, and packing our bags for a 3AM bus ride to Dublin!


Saturday, July 6, 2013

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 12

Street Pastors went very well last night.  Because of the size of our groups, we were split between two locations.  Despite some apprehension and a little fear of the unknown, I think everyone had a great time serving coffee, tea or soup - love in a cup - on the streets of Derry last night!

Today, we all attended the grand opening and dedication of the play park part of our team constructed this week.  The community centre was very grateful for our help and hard work, completely beside themselves with the amount of work our team accomplished in such a short period of time!

This afternoon, our team was distributed around the area for on-street collections.  Similar to what the Salvation Army does with the red kettles in front of stores at Christmas, we stood receiving donations for the Street Pastors ministry of Cornerstone City Church.

Tonight, we met up with another team of Catholics that were here in Derry to do various service projects as well.  We held hands, circled the Guildhall, knelt together and prayed for this city!  Truly an amazing moment!  Afterwards, we had a worship service to cap off our week, followed by a team debrief back at the Halls.  Tomorrow, church at Cornerstone, followed by a tour of the Northern Coast!


Friday, July 5, 2013

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 11

Very, very brief post...  Kids Week wrapped up amazingly!  Pray that kids and their families will attend Cornerstone City Church on Sunday.  We hosted a football (soccer) tournament tonight at the Halls of Residence for youth teams around the city - Protestants and Catholics playing football against each other; unbelievable!  Street Pastors - ministering to people on the streets as the pubs close begins in an hour.  We'll be out from 11:15pm to 3am local time, 5:15pm - 9pm CDT.  Please pray that the Holy Spirit would fill us again with His indwelling power, wisdom, guidance and direction, along with protection for our team as we hit the streets of Derry tonight!

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Newsboys - Live with Abandon

2). Leader Profile - Adrienne Schwarz



POSITION - Youth Pastor's Wife in Lexington, NE
HISTORY - Former Children's Leader in Sidney, from Missouri
FAMILY - Married to Kenny with a baby girl
HOBBIES - Making Jewelry, Swimming, Movies

3). Ministry of the Day: 1 Month - Take the challenge to start off the coming school year by taking your Bible with you everywhere you go for one whole month.

4). Link of the Day: Red Notebook - A modern journal that includes a calendar navigation, customizable templates, export functionality and word clouds.

5). Quote of the Day: 'A little more persistence, a little more effort, and what seemed hopeless failure may turn to glorious success.' - Elbert Hubbard

6). Movie of the Day: Amazing 9 Layer Density Tower

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Bikini Day. It is also the birthday of Adrienne (above), a distinction she shares with Circus owner PT Barnum from 1810. Finally, it is the anniversary of when the first Indonesian presidential election was held in 2004.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 10

A day without sickness!  Praise The Lord!

Kids Week Day 4 was AMAZING!  At my location, our kids attendance grew to 74!  There's only 88 kids that attend this Primary School!  I think I've said before...we would have probably been happy to see 44.  One of the local ladies, who's very familiar with the school, said she only expected 20! God I'd good!

Part of the success of the week has to be attributed to the Extreme Team - a ministry of Cornerstone City Church that goes into elementary schools throughout the school year to share the gospel in fun, exciting ways.  I think they visit about 20 schools once a month.  After the program yesterday, our team walked through the village where our school is located.  Kids ran from their homes excited to see us.  A couple of girls asked about the Extreme Team.  When she found out that we came from the same group, she was excited to bring her friends today!

I failed to mention yesterday....  At the close of yesterday's program, an invitation was given to accept Christ and about 20 kids responded at my Kids Week location!  Praise The Lord!

No new news on the building acquisition and keys situation.  My guess is, because of all the ups and downs that they have experienced with this over the past couple if years, they'll not make any announcements at this point until keys are in hand.  Keep praying!

We're off to a BBQ and Irish cultural party tonight!  Back at it tomorrow!  Thanks again for all your prayers and support!

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: AJ Michalka - All I've Ever Needed 

2). Bible Commentary - 1 Samuel 3,4 - Notes on God's Plan

3). Ministry of the Day: Missions Bike Ride - Join us Sept 2-9 as we raise funds for STL/BGMC by riding our bikes across the Sandhills of Central Nebraska.

4). Link of the Day: Worth Monkey - The online blue book for used electronics

5). Quote of the Day: 'I hope to stand firm enough to not go backward, and yet not go forward fast enough to wreck the country's cause.' - Abraham Lincoln

6). Movie of the Day: Unforgettable Video Game Noises

7). Miscellaneous: Today is Independence Day and National Indivisible Day. It is also the birthday of President Calvin Coolidge from 1872. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that the Louisiana Purchase was announced to the US people in 1803.

Flag Raising Ceremony at Kids Camp 2 last month

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 9

Today was the tipping point for me.  It was the point I really felt that it's all down hill from here.  We only have four more days here: two final days of Kids Week, a day for street collections and Sunday - church and touring northern coast.  Sad day.

Kids Week continued to rock and roll!  One of the sites has increased in attendance each day this week.  Both of the other sites were down less just a couple of kids today.  Everything has just been amazing! At my Kids Week location, we also painted a couple of rooms, painted a fence, washed buckets and buckets of toys and cleaned out a large storage building.  If the last three days are any indication, the next two days are going to be out of this world!

Tonight's dinner report: chicken, chips, stuffing and gravy!  Very nice!   From time to time, our bus drivers or another "local" adult leader will treat us with a brief stop to see something special, enjoy an amazing view, or to add something to the cultural experience.  Not everyone on the Nebraska team will have identical experiences.  Each will enjoy something unique and special on this trip as a result of their local hosts.  Tonight, our team stopped by Bob and Sharon Riddles for desserts!  There were about eight different things to choose from, but Sharon's pavlova was the best I've ever put in my mouth!  A-MAZING!

Tomorrow, Kids Week, Day 4.  We've never done that before!  We've only ever done three days of Kids Week!  Tomorrow night we'll attend an Irish céilí - an Irish cultural night consisting of traditional Irish dances, games and fun activities.  I've always found it slightly ironic to celebrate the Fourth of July, the day we declared our independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain, IN the United Kingdom....

Prayer Requests: Another two with sickness today.  I should have been keeping a tally!  Both were feeling much better tonight.  Please pray that this cycle of sickness stops.

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Clay Crosse - When I Lift My Hands

2). Blog Entry: Leaders Corner
     July is the Saturday of Summer! Here, in the middle of this great season without school, youth and children's ministries must decide how to proceed. Children's ministries almost always press on because they are associated with Sunday morning services that never take a break. Youth Ministries often have a choice to take a brief hiatus until school begins again. Even if services take a break, we in Nebraska Youth Ministries would encourage you to continue relationship through special events, social media, and other outlets to keep momentum going strong. Some students will only be involved in your youth ministry during the summer because of travel schedules between separated parents. Summer is a great time for relational outreach; planning special fun events and asking members to invite their friends to join them. Summer can also be a time for leaders to emerge and assume new responsibilities as part of your team. Finally, take advantage of the summertime to prepare your students for a strong start to the school year in August as Campus Missionaries and giving to Speed the Light.

3).  Ministry of the Day: Youth Pastors Retreat - Join us and other Youth Leaders across Nebraska in Grand Island August 22-24th.

4). Link of the Day: Coolendar - A new planning experience available anywhere.

5). Quote of the Day: 'We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.' - Martin Luther King, Jr.

6). Movie of the Day: New York Day

7). Miscellaneous: Today is National Stay out of the Sun Day. It is also the birthdays of Amanda Olson (pastor's wife in Pender, NE), Bart Wilkins (pastor in Omaha, NE), and Elisha Steinbach (pastor's wife in Holdrege, NE), a distinction they share with actor Tom Cruise from 1962. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that William the Conqueror became the Duke of Normandy in 1035.

Students signing the wall of change at High School Camp in June

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 8

Sugar plum fairy cakes!  Today was a good day!  (I'm not at all sure I used that phrase appropriately, but perhaps it will give all the locals who are following the blog a wee laugh!)

It rained most of the day.  No surprise!  At this time of the year, there's over a 60% chance that precipitation will be observed at some point during a given day.  The temperature was in the low 60s.  (15-18C...again, for the locals.). For our team, out in Ballymana....er, ah, Donemana, I was a bit concerned it might keep some of the kids away from Kids Week.  We actually had a 13% increase in kids over yesterday!  At least one of our other Kids Week locations experienced an increase in attendance today too!

Our plans this evening changed, which allowed a few of us to make a stop at Grianan of Aileach, a stone ringfort thought to have been built in the sixth or seventh century.  I thought it looked like prime real estate for Ga-ga Ball!  After that, it was back the Halls for an early night!  That allowed not only our team some extra down time, but the local team as well, who didn't just arrive this week, but have been working hard to put this week together for a long time.

I posted my evening meal the other night...  Last night I had fish and chips (haddock, maybe, and steak fries).  Tonight I had a "dressed cheeseburger" - beef, cheese, onions, tomato and coleslaw - and chips, of course!  The amount of chips consumed here...astronomical!

Tomorrow shall be nearly identical to yesterday and today.

Prayer Requests:  One of our girls came back to the Halls ill about noon today.  Pray for her complete healing and recovery.  Pray that we don't look at the success of the last two days and relish in those victories when the battle is not yet won.  It won't matter how we started if we don't finish well!

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: Unspoken - Who You Are

2). Blog Entry: Caption Contest (click on the pic below to submit a caption)



3). Ministry of the Day: National Fine Arts - Check out the upcoming National Event, held in Orlando, Florida.

4). Link of the Day: Quora - Your best source for knowledge from the web.

5). Quote of the Day: 'Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.' - Albert Einstein

6). Movie of the Day: Air Horn Chair

7). Miscellaneous: Today is World UFO Day. It is also the birthday of Terrance Talley (speaker from Jr High Camp), a distinction he shares with Vicente Fox, Mexican President, from 1942. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that Europeans first visited Minnesota in 1679.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Nebraska AIM 2013: Day 7

I've put it off long enough.  Time for a brief update.  I'm exhausted.  It was imperative that our team give it all today to ensure that Kids Week started with a bang.  I'm pleased to report that it was excellent!

We started the day about an hour earlier than we have been, held morning devotions and were off to our Kids Week locations.  As I'm only at one location, I can only attest to it specifically, but it went perfectly!  Of the 88 children that attend this primary school, 60 attended Kids Week today, and I think we'll see that number grow tomorrow!  I think we would have been happy to see half (44), but we were ecstatic to see such a fantastic turn out!  Really looking forward to tomorrow!

As an added bonus today, Guiness World Record holder Jon Pritikin joined us to demonstrate some amazing "feats of strength" - rolling a frying pan up like a burrito, break a Louisville Slugger over his leg, bend a steel rod with his teeth, and smash through about eight curbing stones with his arm!  The kids loved it!  Check him out at http://www.feelthepower.org or look him up on YouTube!

Praise Report: The two members of our team that were ill last night participated fully in today's activities!  One attributed it to a lack of sleep.  Both were feeling much better today!  Praise the Lord!

Prayer Request: It occurs to me that I don't have an update on the building acquisition today...still praying for keys on Friday, even if that would require a miracle!  Pray that we're able to sustain the energy level we kicked off Kids Week with today.  Tomorrow is critical.  One day at a time.

NYM Update

1). Song of the Day: 7eventh Time Down - Alive in You

2). Blog Entry: Life Lessons
     During camp, there was a moment when a student had an encounter with God. He was at the altar and I went to pray with Him to receive the Holy Spirit, which he did. What was interesting was that earlier in the night, he had showed up for preservice prayer with a bad attitude. He was being disruptive and interrupting others with his antics. It was so bad that our leader actually called him out from the front and asked him to leave. Who would have known that later that night he would meet up with God? Had the leader not done this task, maybe it wouldn't have gotten his attention and helped him focus a little better? I'm not one for calling people out up front, but in this situation, it seemed like God used it as an opportunity to speak into this young man's life. We must be obedient to God as leaders, even if it's outside our comfort zones.

3). Ministry of the Day: High School Camp - Check out pictures from our first camp of June last month, High School Camp.

4). Link of the Day: Ask Metafilter - Where thousands of life's little questions are answered.

5). Quote of the Day: 'Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.' - Albert Camus

6) Movie of the Day: Celebration Gone Wrong

7) Miscellaneous: Today is Canada Day. It is also the birthdays of Jeff Clark (pastor in Lyons, NE), and Michelle Casey (youth leader in York, NE) and April Hoffman (youth leader in Cozad, NE), a distinction they share with famous Olympian Carl Lewis from 1961. Finally, it is the anniversary of the day that Johann Esch and Heinrich Voes became the first Lutheran martyrs, burned at the stake by Roman Catholic authorities in Brussels in 1523.

High School Camp Group Photo
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