Posts Tagged ‘youth


Can God Use Me?

I was 14 year old when God called me to ministry. It was on a Sunday night in August, 1969. Mr. Whitehead, a deacon at our home church, came to me that night and invited me to do a ministry with him the following Sunday afternoon. He said, “Jones – if you’re going to be in the ministry, you need to meet me here Sunday at 2 o’clock. Bring your guitar.” When I got there, I asked him, “where are we going?”  He mumbled, “we are going to jail.” When you are young in the ministry, you start out at the nursing home and the jail. In the nursing home they can’t hear you, and in jail they can’t leave…both are a captive audience. Sorry, bad humor.

This was the first time that I had been to a jail. As a young teen, I was pretty intimidated by the circumstances, but I was willing to go and sing my three little songs that I had prepared. When it came time to preach, Mr. Whitehead – with no advance warning – announced to the inmates that I was preaching. Wow!!! My first sermon was 11 minutes long and I told themeverything I knew about God. When I asked them if anyone would like to accept Christ, 7 out of 13 said yes. God taught me that day that it was not about me. God took the feeble words of a 14 year-old kid and brought hardened criminals to the cross.

As I left the jail, I was on a spiritual high because God taught me a valuable lesson. If God can use a 14 year-old kid that knew nothing, He can use anyone.

Yes, God can use you today and everyday. Make yourself available and God will surprise you with how much you can do for His kingdom.


training up the next generation: part 1

How many times has this happened to you?

A student comes up to you and says they play an instrument, and they want to be in your praise band. You have no idea how this students ranks skill-wise, or where he or she is at spiritually. You tell them to call your office, or message you on Facebook, or you take their number. You lose their number, or they never contact you.  They find you the next week, and you set up a time to “audition,” and one of you has to cancel due to scheduling issues. You never see the student again.

All too many times I have let students slip through the cracks because I did not have a system in place that was geared towards handling these kinds of approaches from students.  I kept putting off launching a “system” because the idea seemed too daunting of a task.

Several months ago, I was at a Tuesday night rehearsal for one of our main services, and noticed a technique I hadn’t seen before. The worship leader had invited players who expressed interest in joining the group to come on Tuesday nights and play “unplugged” alongside other members.   I was on acoustic that night, so I had one of the new folks shadow me.  He was a high school student who was passionate about worship , and really wanted to improve his skills.

Over the next few weeks, Brandon and I became training buddies. I let him play right next to me and pointed out things during practice – like how to read a tricky chart, or where to listen for a change in the drums, etc.  He was learning more and more every week, and we were also getting to know Brandon’s heart, in addition to his skill level and dedication.

I began to think…what if?  What if this shadowing technique could work on a bigger scale with my student bands?  What if this was the solution for receiving the constant influx of potential new players?

In the next few blogs I will let you know what happened to the “what if?” revelation I had.  It has revolutionized my approach to training and mentoring, and I have never been so excited about raising up young students to be worship leaders!


Empowering the Young

Recently, my husband Bryan and I were asked to speak to an elevate group of high school students on “true love.” Because we have a unique “fairy tale” story, I thought this would be an easy task for both of us. As we were talking to those high school kids and I was looking around at their faces, I remembered the hardship that being a young teenager brings. As adults, we often feel more secure in ourselves and ready to take on the world. In contrast, teenagers aren’t even sure of who they are and they definitely are not ready to face the world and everything in it.

I know that the only way I survived those glorious teenage years was through the love and support of my Savior, my parents, and my church. As a church, we need to create secure walls for these students and an opportunity for them to be real and to seek what their soul truly desires. We need to be empowering teenagers to live the full life that God intended.

“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set and example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity.” -1 Timothy 4:12

This verse indicates that teenagers are fully capable of setting an example to us adults. We are so blessed here at CBC to be surrounded by so many spiritually active teenagers. Whenever one of the students leads a devotional in Puresound, I am blown away at the way they touch my life and the truth in their worship. Let’s not only learn from the young, but empower them to teach us along the way.

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