Archive for the ‘NNE4’ Category

Camp Communication Practices

I love when we communicate well in a medium that connects with the youth at our camp.  In years past we have failed miserably in stating our expectations of behavior for the week.  This year I believe we nailed it.  Honestly, I’ve never heard people applaud after hearing a list of rules.

Watch and enjoy…

Off To Camp

NNE4 2009 Youth Camp

So excited for camp!  We are up at the camp now and all the youth will be showing up between 3 and 5 today.  The clouds are parting and we are beginning to see some sunshine!  Pray that the clouds all clear and that we have a great, dry week.  If you are interested in praying for camp specifics you can follow us on twitter this week here.  You can also check in at for videos of the week and other fun stuff.

Please pray for many lives to be impacted this week and forever.

Mission Accomplished


Every Summer for the past 6 years now I have been the director of our denominations Youth Camp for the Northern New England District.  Over the years the numbers have grown in attendance and I have greatly enjoyed leading the team that makes this camp happen.  It has been a true blessing to be a part of the leadership of the district and head up the youth camp.  We have had some phenomenal speakers and worship teams come to join us over the years – and we have had some that were not so phenomenal.  One thing that we have experienced throughout all who have come and gone is the simple fact that God works in spite of us.  In spite of our failures, mistakes, and poor planning – God shows up.

This simple fact has relieved much stress on my behalf during the course of our week of camp.  When a speaker makes  statement that goes against what we agree the Bible says, when a possibly intimate service with great life transformation turns into a Q&A session, when the worship team shows up and ends up being a rock band that sings a couple worship songs (Father Abraham is not a worship song!)  God shows up.  God works and brings about the life change that we pray for, fast for, cry out for.

This year I have been facing the challenge of dealing with the fixed costs of the campground that we rent, covering the costs of a camp program that oozes excellence, and shrinking numbers.  The economy is hitting us hard – directly and indirectly.  Our numbers for registration are half of what they have ever been.  I have found myself getting discouraged by this.  I ask myself the questions: 

  • Was last year that bad?
  • Has camp taken a back seat to other events?
  • Have we not promoted enough?

All of these questions seem to be coming back with similar responses.  Our camp is great.  Camp is a priority.  Promotion has been great.  In speaking with families around the district I am learning that many young people are doing many great things this summer in place of camp. 

I spoke with the mother of a 14 year old girl who will be attending a 20 day YWAM experience where she will be equipped and trained to minister in missions settings – she felt called to be a missionary at a previous years camp. 

I spoke with a pastor who is sending a group of 20 people – young and old – to the Philippines to minister to the poor and needy in that country – many of whom have attended camp in the past and heard the message that they need to get active in their service for the “least of these”. 

We have a church in our district that had been sending about 30 teens each year and they are not joining us this year.  This group will be leaving for Guatemala two weeks after our youth camp ends.  They each had to raise over $2000.00 to go on this trip.  Over the years at camp we have encouraged young people to sacrifice their own selfish desires and go where God is calling them. 

We have a few teens who will not be attending camp this year because they have started a band and are doing shows in some very rough environments.  They are going into these places and rocking out hard, gathering a following, and then pointing every person at the show towards Jesus through spoken words during and after the shows.  

I don’t believe our numbers being very low this year is a sign of a bad camp.  On the contrary, I believe we can and will celebrate an accomplished mission.  The message that has been proclaimed for years has been heard and young people are moving to action.  They are living out their faith.  They are going where they are called.  They are serving Christ and many people groups with passion.  Are our numbers a sign of failure?  No.  They are a sign that what we have been striving for is happening. 

And for that I rejoice!

Youth Camp Video Day 3

Youth Camp Video Day 2

NNE4 Youth Camp

I’m still digesting all of camp and trying to get my head around the whole experience.  While I do I will just be posting some of the daily videos from this past week.  Enjoy!

Blog Thoughts

When I began this blog it was because I wanted to communicate what was going on at Impact and our NNE4 District events.  The first posts were daily ministry reports and prayer requests from our Youth Summer Camp.  Over time I have seen this blog morph into a place where I allow people into my life.  I have had many conversations with people who will reference something that I wrote about – funny thing is that most times it is just random stuff that I posted on.

We all want to feel connected.  Somehow, this blog helps me connect with people.  It seems like when I am at GCC on Sundays I have few conversations with the same people.  As new people are always walking through our doors I am always on the lookout for new people to make feel comfortable and welcome.  At Impact I am usually trying to keep youth from hanging on something that will break.  All of this busy-ness has caused me to regularly feel like I am losing touch with my peep’s.

I have a thought.  How about if we all spend time purposely looking for people who are new to GCC and we ALL go to them and make them feel welcome.  At Impact, we ALL can spend some time dragging random teenagers down from whatever they are hanging on.  In doing this, together we will all have time to spend talking with our friends.

Relationships are huge with me.  I love to be with the friends that I have made at GCC.  It is these friendships that I have that keep me grounded.  I’d like to remain connected with everyone – and I will continue to make random posts on this blog about regular life stuff – but my main point for having this blog is to help other youth pastors/leaders in student ministry.  That is where the majority of my posts will be focused on going forward.

Student Ministry people, what are the topics that you would like to read about?  Any issue that is burning in you right now that you would like to flesh out?  Leave a comment and let’s get to it!

Weekly Alabaster Box

This week Brett comes to us straight from the black sand beaches of Australia and talks about his favorite song on the new album “Fearlessly Stumble”.

Weekly Alabaster Box

This week Naarah shares with us the motivation behind the new song “Chosen Generation”.  If you haven’t yet registered for this years Youth Summer Camp you still have time!  Click here for your registration forms.

Weekly Alabaster Box

Week 2 – “Bigger”!

I can’t wait for Youth Camp this year as we get to spend the week with all the “mates” from Alabaster Box.  Here’s the second song release from AB off their new album (released in Australia but not yet USA).