Posts Tagged ‘Family’

How Do We Get Teenagers To Read The Bible More?

Have you ever asked yourself this question?

Well I sure have, constantly! I am a mother of a teenager, a very sweet one at that. But will he sit down and read the bible on a daily basis? No, not really.

So, I need help here… what to do, what to do?

I found a very interesting article that might shed some light to this “not-so-simple” question:

How do we get teenagers to read the Bible more?

By Andy Blanks, co-founder of youthministry360. Andy loves Jesus, his amazing wife and daughters, and the Boston Red Sox. In that order.

I have thought a great deal about this, and I’m convinced there isn’t a sure-fire, “try-this-five-step-method” that works. But I do think there are some important things to consider.

Here are a few of them . . .

Knowing God, Part 1: We’re Framing The Question All Wrong.

“What can we do to get teenagers reading the Bible more?” I think this might be the wrong question. I think the right question may be, “What can we do to help teenagers value God more?” God must be important to our teenagers, specifically the idea of knowing God. When knowing God is important, when being close to Him matters to teenagers, the act of reading the Bible simply becomes the means by which they come to know Him. If they value God, they’ll value reading the Bible. Which leads me to the next point . . .

Knowing God, Part 2: It Doesn’t Start With Doing. It Starts With Feeling. 

I read hundreds of blog articles a week. (Or, I skim hundreds. I read a few dozen.) A few times a month I will run across an article that is titled something like this: “5 Steps To Better Bible Reading,” or “Tips To Help Your Students Read The Bible More.” The problem with these articles is that they are practice oriented. They focus on technique (“Bible study methods”) and behavior (“when to study the Bible”). Many of them are solid articles. But they assume a faulty starting point, as I alluded to earlier.

We have to change the way we teach teenagers to think about the Bible. If we teach them to see the Bible primarily as a “discipline,” or a “habit,” or even as “Bible study,” we’re missing it. We’ve forgotten that reading the Bible is relational. (We don’t talk about any other relationship in this way. You don’t develop the discipline of taking your children to see a baseball game. You do it because you love your kids. We should approach the Bible the same way.) We should strive to teach teenagers that the Bible is first-and-foremost a heart-driven, deeply personal, experiential encounter with God. We go to the Bible to engage with God, to meet God. We have to stop putting technique and behavior first, and make Bible reading about feeding our relationship with God.

Teach Teenagers To Embrace Multiple Methods Of Engaging With God’s Word

WAY too often we communicate to students that there is one way to engage with the Bible: sit down with a passage and study it as they would any other text. Inductive, exegetical Bible study. Now, there is absolutely nothing wrong with teaching this method. The only problem comes when this is the ONLY way we teach teenagers to engage with the Bible. It communicates to students that the Bible is meant for primarily comprehension-based information gathering. It neglects the many experiential, heart-driven approaches to meeting God in Scripture.

    • What about praying through the Psalms as personal worship?
    • What about choosing a specific attribute of God’s and meditating on it over the course of a few days?
    • What about learning some of the different names used for God and choosing to pray to Him using a name that speaks to them personally?
    • What about creating something, ANYTHING using Scripture?
    • What about prayer journaling?

These are just a few of the many different ways to lead teenagers to engage with Scripture. They represent a varied approach to encountering God in His Word, and helps students to break free from one specific way of looking at the Bible.

Modeling A Right Attitude Toward The Bible Is Key

This almost seems like a cop-out to include this on the list. After all, you can say this about every aspect of spiritual growth. But, I think this is especially true for this discussion. Your students will pick up on whether or not you value the Bible. If you model a passion for meeting God in His Word, your students will pick up on it. This is “caught” WAY more than it is “taught.”

These are just a few of my thoughts on the subject. I want my teenagers reading the Bible more. But I know that it starts with their attitude and values toward God and His Word.

So, what are your thoughts? 




CKC Children’s Video

A new video from Covenant Kids Congo is now available for children. The video details how community development works through Covenant Kids Congo powered by World Vision. Demonstrating how God works through us to build a community as local leaders come together. Check out the video and give them your feedback. Feel free to use this in your church along with the CKC children’s curriculum.

Click here to learn more about Covenant Kids Congo!

Why women value Triennial

Watch this video to learn why women value Triennial!

Special appearances by our very own Marti Burger and Aune Carlson!

August 15-18, 2013

San Diego, California

 When women gather, incredible things happen— especially when the gathering involves the diverse and dynamic women of the Covenant! Triennial is a four day conference that offers fellowship, worship, active learning, and fun for all women (ages 18+). Get ready to be equipped, motivated, and encouraged!

For more information on Triennial, check out

Summer Gig

Would you like to spend the summer making a difference?

Merge is going to have a big summer in 2013! They will need a full summer staff to be able to support all of the teams going. Merge will need people based in Mexico, Guatemala and in the Dominican Republic. They are looking for interpreters, construction supervisors and food coordinators/people ministry assistants. This is a great opportunity for college students who have a passion for missions, demonstrate leadership skills, and a desire to work with youth!

The summer staff at Merge will have the chance to grow personally and spiritually — surrounded by people from all over the world. You’ll have a chance to try new things and spend some quality time in the most beautiful places on God’s earth. You’ll also be challenged to take your faith to a new level and learn how to serve like Jesus. Giving you the feeling of being refreshed by the people you’ve impacted during the summer.

If you have interest in serving with Merge this summer, please contact Dale at
For more information about Covenant Merge Ministries, check out their website!
Like Merge on Facebook

Feast on this!

Post a Comment » Written on July 11th, 2011     
Filed under: CHIC, Events, Feast
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Over 500 people gathered at the YMCA of the Rockies in Estes Park, CO to celebrate, worship…and have their picture taken. I set my mom up with her camera and a couple chalk boards in front of the CHIC 2012 display near the entrance to the meeting space – the task: take photos of people holding a sign that says the year they first attended CHIC. Some attended for the first time as a student with their youth groups. For others, it had been many years (even decades) since their completion of high school when they volunteered. What a testimony to the goodness of God throughout the history of CHIC!

The collage below is made up of a few photos we took. For more visit our Cov Youth and CHIC Facebook pages and tag your friends, leave us a story of your CHIC experience. Be sure to check out the CHIC Legacy Fund and as well!

The Feast 2011

June 25-28, 2011 Estes Park, YMCA of the Rockies, CO
We would like to have as many people as possible experience the Feast, a spiritual life experience for the whole intergenerational, multi- ethnic Covenant Family (
Consider this: we invest in things all the time. We invest in the latest technology, education, causes we believe in, relationships, learning and mastering new challenges. As a church we invest in our community, missions, compassion, mercy, and justice. We invest in discipleship by mentoring, teaching, and caring for others. We invest in the spiritual walks of children, youth and adults.

As a church, please consider investing in a child, a youth, a young adult, a couple, a young family or a retiree. Invest in their faith walk and encourage them in their journey by sending them to the Feast. The Feast is a unique opportunity to do life together and experience the best of who God has made us to be… and embody the Kingdom of God!

In an effort to make these gatherings more accessible, we’ve made some adjustments to registration costs; keep reading! Continue Reading »

Hold Life Loosely

Post a Comment » Written on June 6th, 2011     
Filed under: Reflection
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Reid Olson serves on the Speaker Team and describes himself as “just a normal guy, married with 2 kids in middle school, embracing my 40’s, who thinks he hasn’t done much for transforming this world into anything monumental, but when God speaks through me, it’s fun to watch Him use me like a tool to do His ‘thing’. That’s all.”

In March he put pen to paper, scratch that, he put his fingers on the home keys and got to typing a blog post.  Since writing the post a few things have transpired…here is what he has to say about the time between then and now:

Since writing this article, I’ve been released from my ministry position as Pastor of Students at Pine Lake Covenant. I revisit this article often as the Lord continues to speak to me about His prompting in writing it. I had no idea that life would transpire as it has, but I have truly been able to live out this blog post in more ways than one.

I know that God is working in the lives of our family. I know that God will not abandon us. I know that holding things loosely in my life is really the only way to find sanity and stability. I often feel like I want to grab at the controls again and squeeze tightly the things I want to control, but the more I squeeze, the less control I really have over anything.

God is teaching me the reality of trusting His lead, sometimes in more ways that are uncomfortably not how I’d like to learn to trust. When I recall the characters in Scripture, I’m reminded that they didn’t get much of the easy way of faith either, so I suppose we’re all in good company.

Please pray for our family as we seek God’s next call for us. After summer sabbatical we are looking for a lead pastor position… Will preach for food. :)

Click here to read his blog post entitled “Hold Life Loosely”.

National Youth Survey

Post a Comment » Written on May 30th, 2011     
Filed under: Events
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Do you really know how the youth in your community or ministry feel about God, Church, ethics and sexuality?  How would it affect your strategies if you had a “snapshot” of their REAL beliefs, values and behaviors?  What would you do differently if you knew exactly how they felt about your youth ministry/organization?

These areas are being explored in a national survey and your youth ministry/organization is invited to participate.

Continue Reading »

JP’s Custom Caricature

Post a Comment » Written on May 23rd, 2011     
Filed under: Announcements, Service
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Have you heard of JP’s Custom Caricature? For years our own Jeff Palmberg been creating group caricatures following each summer’s mission trip that he has given to the students as a reminder of the trip. He works to include jokes and memories from the trip and they’ve been a fun way to recall all that happened.

We’d like to suggest that this may be a great way to build team unity among your staff/summer staff. For only $20/person Jeff will create a full-color 11×17 caricature that you can frame as well as a digital file so that you can make copies for everyone!

Check out his Facebook page JP’s Custom Caricature for more samples of his work and additional info. Thank you for considering this idea or other ways he can create something for you!

Support Cornerstone Community Outreach

Post a Comment » Written on May 10th, 2011     
Filed under: Announcements, Events
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You may have missed the article Covenant Newswire posted on May 6. Here it is:

Just three-tenths of a percent separate the Jesus People USA Covenant Church’s proposed playground center from qualifying for a $15,000 award to help renovate and upgrade the playground at the church’s homeless shelter.

Five awards will be given as part of a promotion co-sponsored by the KaBOOM! Website and the Dr. Pepper Snapple group, which are funding 103 grants totaling $2.1 million during the next three years as part of Let’s Play—a community partnership to get kids active nationwide. The five highest vote-getters will receive awards. Continue Reading »