Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Quick Update

To the few that are reading this, I'm sorry that I haven't posted in a long time. I have had every intention to do so. Then it dawned on me, "poor FoYA!" I will be re-launching a new blog after Thanksgiving... don't know the new title, but will have something that includes FoYA (can't leave them out).

Hope to see you at merge (Nov. 26), Family First (Dec. 3).
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone!


Sunday, October 29, 2006

FoYA 2.0

The new version of FoYA (FoYA 2.0) is released on Monday, 10.30.06.

After several weeks (and great times with the 3 to 13 that have shown up) we are tweaking a bit. Our hope is to facilitate our needs and their needs. In other words, 9:00 PM is what works best for the Aaby home, but certainly has proven to be pretty late for those driving in. However, earlier in the evening means that we compromise our family time (and bedtime for our girls). So... we're trying to do something on the little-bit-earlier-than-we-think-is-ideal side. FoYA will now begin at 8:15 (with the hope of being done at/before/around 10:00 PM.

Please pray that our girls do well with getting to sleep quickly (around 8:00 PM).
Please pray that we see a few more people try again with the new hour.
Pray for our "Jesus Encounters" series we are beginning.

Thank you to our FoYA folk that helped serve at merge; you did very well!



Sorry it has been a bit since I last posted. Busy times.

Was quite pleased with the overall feel at merge tonight. The meal was fantastic (chili, cornbread and salad/veggies... and who can forget the applecrisp?). Seemed like people had some good conversations around the tables. Lisa Huget thought there were about 90 people served at the meal. I was happy to see some new faces at merge and it seemed as if some stretched themselves and sat with people a little outside their circle.

The merge service was a lot of fun for me. I love hearing how people read Scripture. Sometimes I wish we could go two hours (or more). However, I am commited to keeping it around 75 minutes. I would have loved to have sung even more, but would have loved to have prayed, shared, and invested more into the passages as well. "Engage" was our subject for the night; we talked about how to engage our culture. The overall gist I was hoping we could walk away with is that we each can/should start with what is familiar. Paul (as seen in Acts) would first go to the Synagogues; this is what was familiar to him. After sharing (or attempting to share) with the Jews and converted Gentiles, he would move to marketplaces and other gathering places.

Where is your Synagogue, market place and gathering location? Let's engage in those places.

Anybody on here have a thought or a stirring from merge?


Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Apprentice Perspective

Jr. High Pizza & Game Night

Wave had its first Pizza and Game Night on October 8. Overall, it was a great time where the students were able to eat pizza, play games, and just enjoy fellowship with one another. After initially stuffing our faces with pizza, students listened to a quick talk that followed up on the talk from Family First Night the previous week. Then, we played a group game called Tribe Wars, which is a small field game very similar to Capture the Flag. After this, we allowed the students to be on their own and choose from a number of fun activities that included football in the gym, pool, and playing video games up in the youth room. The night really gave the students a chance to relax and have fun with one another, which will hopefully lead them to feel comfortable and excited about inviting their friends to future Pizza and Game Nights.

Jr. High Adventure Night

The first Adventure Night for Wave was something called an Italian Scavenger Hunt. The students broke up into two teams at the church each led by two adult drivers and one adult captain. The students were then asked to find five different items that would be the essentials that they would need for their dinner that evening, which happened to be spaghetti. Bill and Janette Ravander were very gracious to us by hosting us in their home, which was the final destination for the teams and where they made their meals. The night turned out to be a lot of fun for students, who not only were successful in picking up all their items needed for the meal, but also picked up a few other students who hadn’t originally been at the church but joined us for the rest of the evening. I want to send out a big thanks to the four parents that drove the kids around that evening, the other leaders, and to the Ravanders for opening up their home to us.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Seeking Prayer

Will you be faithful in praying for these specific requests?
1. FoYA: We have been blessed by 15-18 different faces; pray that it is truly a place for young adults to connect, grow, re-enter and/or serve (we all come for various reasons).
2. Lifeboats: I can't emphasize enough the desire to have these groups prayed for! This ministry (and the leaders) are the heartbeat of our ministry and it is my hope that we get the opportunity to disciple more and more teens through lifeboats.
3. Nathan Schlaud: If you haven't gotten to know this young man, I hope you take the opportunity to (I'm sure he's open to being asked over for dinner!). I am very excited the Lord led him to us, but we'd be missing the point if we weren't praying for his growth, protection, and development--we're already 1/3 of our way through his time here!
4. Counseling: I am personally dealing with 3 counseling situations. Would you pray for wisdom in how to handle these situations (and for God's provision in matching these student(s)/families with the right people to help).
5. Church: Let's pray for our church, we are over half-way done with our 33 Days, people are understanding stewardship has less to do with $ and more to do with a total-life approach to stewardship. Pray that God would give all of us tangible direction and 100% surrender to what's next.


Harbor P&G a Success!

We're almost done with our first run on our new format of student ministry. Having done merge, and now the alternating (wave/harbor) pizza/game night and adventure nights we are just a Sunday Night Chapel away from completing our first cycle.

Nathan's blog entry should be up by tomorrow (he'll report on both P&G and Adventure for Wave). But as for the P&G for Harbor:

I think at last count there were about 35 sr. high students that made their way through our doors last night. Before serving our pizza (Costco) I quickly explained the goal of a P&G Night. My hope is that it is the ultimate in "hang out" nights for youth. Stealing a philosophy from the movie Field of Dreams "if you build it, people will come;" I am trusting "if we provide it (pizza/facility), people will come." We'll see if it works (before anyone freaks out and thinks that I am literally trying to steal a philosophy from a worldly movie, it's a Biblical principle as well--feeding of the 5000, feasts and festivals, etc.).

Anyway, the overall night is to be laid back, not a lot of organized "stuff" and more an opportunity to hang out and share life. We ate together, played a group game (2 spots right) and then went upstairs for some semi-impromptu worship. Nathan and Joe led, I asked a couple repsonse questions (good comments from students) and my personal highlight came when I prayed for the group with each one laying hands on one-another. Seemed to be a "Holy Spirit" moment. We then concluded with a large group playing floor hockey together!

I'm excited about the missionaries we have on our campuses, in our clubs and on the athletic fields. Let's pray for them to reach out (and maybe even use P&G's to bring some of those youth into the fold).


Monday, October 09, 2006

Prayer Need

I just received a phone call from Kaitlyn Weber (at Seattle Christian). Some of you may have heard about the helicopter crash yesterday; the pilot is a father of two daughters that attend Seattle Christian (6th grade and Sophomore). Please pray for the family the students at SC and for all the church families (like ours) that will be/are hit by this loss.

The Weirdest Thing...

I often have to laugh at the movement of God; let me explain...
In 14 years of youth ministry there has been many-an-event that I have poured out blood, sweat and tears (not to mention many, many hours). For the most part those events have turned out nicely, however, a few have been "duds." Most of the time the students let you know if they like the event by voting with their feet (in other words--if they show up).
On the other hand I have had some events that are absolutely the silliest ideas that have turned out to be the best events ever (again, I've had some silly "duds" too).
Of all the "silly" events that make the least amount of sense, but is one of the biggest successes: "The Dick's Roadtrip."
Let me explain the concept/formula:
1. Students arrive and wait in church parking lot for about a half-hour (because we know several will have forgotten a release form).
2. Load up the bus
3. Overflow to the van
4. Second overflow to 2nd van
5. Arrive at Dick's Drive-In on 45th
6. Dick's employees looked shocked, but do a good job of getting us through lines
7. Students enjoy/tolerate the food
8. Everyone gets cold (many from drinking cold drinks/shakes; some from wearing shorts, flip-flops and a t-shirt in mid-October; and yet some--both).
9. Load up vehicles and come back to church
10. Get picked up.

So silly. No time/effort required, Name the date, load the bus, eat, come home. The funniest part-- it is our largest outreach of the year--we had about 8 new students last night! (side-funny note--at least 5-6 people came last night that didn't even eat.)

Praise God for relational ministry. Pray that our senior high students would invite these same friends to the Pizza and Game Night next Sunday at 6:00.

Our Jr. High P&G-N went very well last night too. Perhaps I'll get Nathan to blog an update soon.

We appreciate your prayers!


Monday, October 02, 2006

FF Review

We had our first "Family First" night last night. Overall I was very pleased with the outcome. Great food, seemed to be good conversation around the tables too. I appreciate the "5 minute clean-up" as well. Everyone pitched in to take tables and chairs down and the transition to upstairs happened so quickly.
After the fun "Identity Crisis" game Joe and Alyssa helped facilitate a good time of worship through song.
The breakout into Jr. High, Sr. High and Parents went well too. I can only speak for the "parent" time, but I heard that the Harbor and Wave talks went really well (Joe Heider and Nathan). I very much appreciate the parents feedback as they described some of the "pits" that are hard about parenting in 2006. I look forward to our next two times together as we complete a "reach up, reach in and reach out" series.
Many thanks to the students and parents for trying Family First, but most of all thanks to the Fabrizio's, Vera and others that helped prep the wonderful meal!

Please pray for:
1. A set of parents that are dealing with a very tough situation with their child (sorry for no details, just pray for grace, understanding and softened hearts).
2. Pray for a meeting I have with a young man tomorrow afternoon. He is a friend of one of our fringe youth. This young man just lost his grandfather and is asking the question "why do good people go to hell?" He is willing to meet with me (and I am going to have Nathan with me) to hear the "Christian" answer. Pray for grace, wisdom and the opportunity to share the good news!
3. Pray for the parents of our youth! Pray that we would get a sense of community together!
4. Pray for our lifeboat leaders--for strength, for endurance and great wisdom in discipling our teens (I will soon list out all our leaders so you can pray individually for them).

Thanks so much!


Thursday, September 28, 2006

Family First--First!

We're just a couple days away from "regular youth group" as we'll soon know it. Actually, we started last week with merge; but merge is a different beast all together (some enjoy an evening at home, some really get in to merge, others are 50-50 on it). Anyway, we're just a couple days from our first meal as a youth program. The first Sunday of the month is entitled "Family First" and we encourage the parents of our youth to come for the evening.
Pray through our evening in advance:
5:00 PM Our meal prep team will be hard at work, the junior class will be serving this week.
6:00 PM Arrival and "hang time" in the MPR/Foyer
6:15 PM Meal served
7:00 PM Upstairs for group interaction and worship (music) set
7:30 PM Parents, Jr. High, Sr. High all go to different areas of the church for the more formal "program" portion
8:15 PM Dismiss

I hope you help get the word out to other students and parents... can't wait to see how we kick-off.

Pray in advance for the next couple weeks as well:
10/8 Pizza and Game night (outreach/evangelistic message at Wave); Adventure Night (lifestyle evangelism, community building) at Harbor (Dick's Road Trip).
10/15 Pizza and Game night at Harbor; Adventure Night (Italian Scavenger Hunt/Dinner) for Wave.

Last, I hope you're doing well with 33 Days, you can keep up with that blog as well: www.33minutes.blogspot.com