YES is now.

It’s a word that holds power. It’s positive.  It opens doors.

As a ministry leader what IF the words were YES for your team, your families and kids at your church?  What if three letters could help you climb over the hurdle of average in ministry?   I don’t know about you, but the Gospel is way too wonderful for the word average What has average done?   According to Barna research, average has helped about 70% of kids who turn 18 walk away from the church.  What’s your church saying YES to, to change that trajectory?

If you are serious about impacting kids from crib to college, its going to take lot of conversations, consideration and prayer.  BUT nothing will happen until you start by say YES!  You can certainly do this right where you are. But if you were to gather with people who have done what you do,  and love kids and families- what might happen?   The Orange Conference in Atlanta this year can help get you on your way to YES in just about every area of ministry to kids and families.  Check it out.

Here’s a great way to get a free ticket. Offer will expire VERY soon Friday March 14!

Say YES to  kids, win a free ticket to Orange Conference 2014!




ORANGE WEEK: Something Happens…

Digging through some old emails way back in 2007  I read an email inviting me to a new type of conference.  Something was about to happen.   The email was from Reggie Joiner.  It read:

We are combining our efforts to create an alternative conference that offers a different approach for leaders who are determined to make an impact on the next generation. We think now is the time to launch out and establish a unique conference that fuels what we consider to be the key movements effectively impacting children and students.

Reggie was right.  Something did happen.  I could not help but be impacted at the building momentum of people determined to see God move through effective ministry to kids and families.  And we were just getting started.


Now, here we are in 2014 with lots of experience (and hard knocks) behind us, more determined than ever to impact ministry in the local church.  It’s not about a clever term or color called Orange, but people who know what matters. Kids matter to God. Why would we settle for anything mediocre in ministry to kids and families?


Something happens when you come. Something happens when you get AWAY from ministry to focus ON ministry! Something happens when you attend as a team you serve with to bounce ideas and process what you have heard and experienced.  Something happens when God move you through speakers from all over the country to reach do ministry better. Something happens when you fellowship other people who DO what you do week after week.   Let something happen to you by experiencing ORANGE 2014.  What’s the answer? YES! Best rates and travel helps are on the site for you.  See you there!

Beatlemania and ministry

Fifty years ago the world knew not what was about to happen on the Ed Sullivan show.  A group of 4 young men were about to invade culture and make an impact.  They got to do what they loved to do: music!  And here we are fifty years later singing their tunes because like it or not, the simple lyrics are in our heads.  The Beatles engaged people.

Much more than any band that hit the USA,  I think ministry to kids should be engaging.  Let’s think bigger than  tables, chairs and color pages and engage kids with the Good News!  The Bible recounts of how Jesus engaged people.   Jesus spoke the simple lyrics of truth and engaged those near him.  He drew crowds.  His conversation was about mercy and love which people longed to hear.  Sometime it was a painful truth (rich young ruler) but never the less,  truth that engaged.   And they talked about what they had heard with one another.   Like kids ministry, Jesus used practical every  things to present  truth.  Mud,  spit,  wheat, fish, boats, bread and more. Everyday things can be engaging when presented in creative ways.

Jesus gave the high priority of an invite for kids to come to Him.   Let’s not fear how we engage them, but be purposeful to draw them.  Love Andy Stanley’s words on this: take culture which is ever changing to present that which NEVER changes.   Why?  He loves you,  yeah, yeah, yeah.

Elevate Community: Got small group?



Got a great pic from my niece today.  I was working on the power of a small group and the strategy of Orange went I received her photo.  It  said so much to what I was working on. (Check out the tiny  little small group member scrunched down in the middle of the couch.  Emma is my 6 month old great who was hosting the get together). These little ladies  have so much ahead of them.  They  have parents who love them. Their parents want to do all they can to be sure these girls know and grow in the Lord.  They need to be cheered on as they raise these girls.  How can you, the church leader help?  Give them a consistent small group leader.  Train and equip your small group leader to invest in a consistent group of kids.   It sets parents up for  win.  It sets kids up for  a win.  It’s what happens when a church truly partners with parents.

The future is so bright for this generation.   Their are praiseworthy deeds for us to tell them! Oh, to be in on the ground floor opportunity of a big investment like this!  You can. Start casting vision and invest as a leader to be sure a consistent small group leader is there for the kids at your church.


Samuel Clemens in your ministry

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, dream, and discover.” — Mark Twain


Mark Twain’s quote just invites adventure. It stirs me.  I like to think about adventure in life.  But wait!  What if Mark Twain was talking about church? What about adventure in ministry?  If you are a ministry leader, you know about the everyday stuff of ministry responsibilities. Make sure the “t” is crossed and the “i” is dotted.   Get your volunteer spots covered.  Make sure you have the ritz crackers stocked in the nursery.  Get everyone copies of the lessons.  Make your handouts.  Yes, it might be important and keep us busy.   But without strategy- the adventure could be oh-so-common after a short while.   A strategy is the way you weave all into purposeful ministry

What if Mark Twain were in your ministry today.   Okay,  go with me here just for a moment think about it.  I think he would invite some change in the ministry game.  He would help you invite adventure. I think he could make you smile with some wit in a rough situation.  And perhaps he might help keep things in perspective.

When Jesus invited his future disciples to leave all and come follow Him, He knew that adventure was ahead.  Blind would see.  Dead would come alive.  Many fed with a few fish and some bread.   Seems much more exciting that just the fishin’ business.. 🙂  They threw off the bowlines.  They walked away from a safe harbor.

This next week I have the pleasure of being with people who will have HUGE jewels in their crown in heaven.  Imagine the millions of hours invested to touch the lives of kids and families represented at Orange.  People that want to do EFFECTIVE ministry to kids and families.  This could be ministry game changing.  This gospel is too glorious to stay in a safe harbor, and reject the notion of ministry as an adventure. I’m all in to explore, to dream and discover ministry strategies to impact families. The Timeless Gospel never grows cold as we use fresh ways to share it.