Youth Emphasis Week 2009 Recap

Youth Emphasis Week 2009 Recap

The purpose of this year’s Youth Emphasis Week at the Mexican Baptist Theological Seminary was to create the awareness of the need to work with young people, to walk beside them in their problems, and to make an investment in their lives because God can turn those problems into opportunities for future ministry.

We used the format of a television program, turned the entire auditorium into a TV set, and we titled the program “Invertidos” (Inverted). There is a play on words in Spanish that uses the meanings invest and invert.

On the first day, we invited Huberto (our first YM graduate in Mexico and now youth ministry professor) to be the special guest, so along with all the usual TV show stuff, we asked him to talk about the problems that young people have, and we left it at that: The problems we go through cause our lives to be messed up.

Day 2 was the day for the homiletics class to preach, so the student who preached talked about Genesis 3, temptation and sin.

Day 3 was an open forum where we saw a case study of a girl and guy who grew up in the church, began sleeping together, and got married behind everyone’s back (but each of them still lived with their own parents). He went to the USA to work, but got involved with another girl, and now wants a divorce. We invited answers from the crowd about how to handle the situation. We left thinking that we didn’t really know how to handle the situation.

invertido inverted croppedDay 4 finished up the week with a look at how God sees these trials in our lives. I spoke about our ability to only see the past and the present while God can see the future. I used 2 Corinthians 1:3-7 to talk about how God sees us not as who we are but how we can be. He sees the future and wants to use these problems that young people are going through now to comfort others in the future.

Overall, I think the week went well. It was great to see the YM students come together as a team and pull off a lot of creative elements. I’m proud of them and their effort. It was a lot of work, but it produced what we had hoped to produce.

Thanks for praying. When I get some time, I hope to post a recap video.

Youth Emphasis Week Day 1

Today was the first day of our Youth Emphasis Week this year. We’re doing a TV program spoof called “Invertido.” Today went well. We turned the music auditorium into a TV studio, and today we talked about what we many people see when they see young people. Huberto was the “special guest.”

During the program, we had a “live” interview with Edgar (which we had taped beforehand). He talked about some interviews he did the day before. Here is the video (in Spanish):

Problemas en la juventud from Dennis on Vimeo.

Investing in the Inverted


Will you join me in praying for next week’s Youth Emphasis Week at the Mexican Baptist Theological Seminary?

We’re talking about how God wants to use current situations that we see as problems for future benefits.

We’re praying that this week will help the Seminary students to understand that the problems that they see in their young people come from numerous sources, but that God wants to invest in the lives of these young people so that they can glorify Him and advance the Kingdom.

I’d love to have your prayers for this week. It’s going to be exciting.

Benefits of Seminary retreats

Benefits of Seminary retreats

Twice a year, the seminary has a retreat that is obligatory for all students. In the past they have been very programmed, and, quite frankly, they tire me out. Going away for an all day adventure with the entire seminary sounds like lots of fun, but it’s always ended with me having a headache and being so worn out that I can’t be ready for the next day’s classes.

However, our retreat last week was fun and tiring, and I’ve decided that there are many benefits to these retreats on a personal level.

  • The Youth Ministry program is more visible.
  • My attendance is a good example for my students.
  • I can get to know the director and dean better.
  • I get to know more students who aren’t in my classes.
  • There’s usually pretty good food.

Here are some pics from the retreat:

Click an image to view a larger version.

3 Responsibilities in the Shema

Today, I started teaching Youth and Family Ministry to my first year students at the Mexican Baptist Theological Seminary. There are a few basic theological principles behind the class, and none is more important than the mandate that God gave Israel in Deuteronomy 6:4-9.

The Shema (click here to hear it sung), as it is known, is one of the most important Jewish prayers. It declares that there is one God, and then it goes on to talk about 3 responsibilities.

  • Personal Responsibility: Each person is to love God with all their heart, soul, and strength. It is a personal responsibility to have this command on our hearts. We cannot fulfill the other two responsibilities without first fulfilling this one.
  • Family Responsibility: We are to “impress” it on our children. It is the responsibility of the parents to teach their children about God. Interestingly enough, the responsibility does not fall on the church (although I believe the church helps the parents with their responsibility).
  • Social Responsibility: Writing them on the gates of the city is about the responsibility we have to share with the community about God.

I believe these responsibilities are in the order they are in for a reason. We cannot expect our children to love God if we do not love him. We cannot “preach” to the community if our families are not examples of loving God. There’s a lot more to be said, but it’s the basis of Youth and Family Ministry. We had a good discussion about this in class this morning.