The Trail Student Ministries Midweek update: Wednesday, February 22, 2011

Midweek update: Wednesday, February 22, 2011


A word from the Word: Read Exodus 32

“1 When the people saw that Moses was so long in coming down from the mountain, they gathered around Aaron and said, “Come, make us gods who will go before us. As for this fellow Moses who brought us up out of Egypt, we don’t know what has happened to him.” (Exodus 32:1)

Food for thought: Holy Cow, Holy Moses…

Do you ever read the Bible and pause and just want to say “wow!” Every time I encounter the Exodus narrative, at certain times I find myself doing this. The story of the Golden Calf is one of the stories for me. Moses had been called up to meet with God, and then he is gone for a time, and the community of Israel, the people of God whom had just been rescued from slavery in Egypt ask Aaron to contrast gods that they could see. But, consider just for a moment what they had seen?

  • They had seen the plagues befalling the Egyptians.
  • They had seen the Lord’s gracious hand providing a deliverer
  • They had seen the Lord’s mercy in the parting of the Red Sea and subsequent destruction of the Egyptians
  • They would have seen the pillar of cloud and the fire by night, the visible manifestation of the presence of God
  • They had seen the provision of God in the wilderness
  • They had seen the justice of God

And now what we, the readers are seeing is bad day in Israel’s history, a day when Israel tried to fashion God into their own image. Think of the possibilities…a god that they could control, a god that they could ignore when they were busy with other things, a god that was a substitute for the real thing. Adam and Eve do a similar thing in the Garden. They had the Lord’s provisions in abundance, and they disregarded the word of the Lord for a path that seemed appealing.

We too live in a day and age where we are presented with opportunities in abundance to fashion golden calves, if you will or to create a god we can control and manage. We must guard against being lead astray. Remember, God is bigger than we could ever imagine. He is the creator, He is mighty, He is righteous. He is awesome!

P.S. there are 86,400 seconds in a day how will you spend them! Choose wisely, because what you with what you have been given matters!


LTC News, Updates, and Stuff:

MARCHing towards LTC

  • All teaching challenge information needs to be turned in to Rodney or Wendy Freeman by March 2nd.
  • Service Challenge forms due into Tammy O’Dell by March 2, 2011
  • A big thanks to all of you who have turned in your LTC registration money! Every little bit helps!!!!


February and some March Calendar: Happenings

•             Senior Reception is coming. I will need lots of help from the Junior parents on down. So, please be aware of a couple of things: A theme has already been chosen, “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.” We will be sporting a classic Disney Theme, and Our theme Scripture will be from Matthew 5:13-16, “13 “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. 14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”

•             There are three seniors (Megan Reed, Kierick Parrish, and Victoria Haggard). At this brief Sunday meeting, we need to highlight our timeline, and begin planning decorations, etc! This meeting is open for junior parents on down.

•             Be sure to get your LTC registration money in a.s.a.p.!

Thu. Feb 24 — MHS Lunch @ the Morrow’s. Bring $3 and you can catch a ride with Jason!

Sat. Feb. 26 — Great Southwest Bible Bowl @ Chisholm Trail! This is an opportunity for the whole church to be involved and to minister to those who come to visit and be a part of Bible Bowl with us. We need housing, cooks, cleaner-uppers, graders, monitors, helpers, you name it, we need it!!!

Sun. Feb 27 — YLG from 5-7pm in the West Annex. I will be at Legacy Bank by 4:30, and leaving by 4:45 if you need a ride! Please remember your $$$!

Sat. March 5 – Spring Sing @ O.C. Cost is $13. More information coming.

Fri. March 11 – Game Night


February Birthdays:

Rebecca Whiteman – 2/3

Spencer Morrow – 2/9

Ashley O’Dell –2/15

Jackson Huddleston – 2/22

Sarah Reed – 2/26

Victoria Haggard – 2/28

Please let me know if I have missed someone!!


Family Focus: Tips, tools, and interesting articles

“…God is not nearly as interested in putting a picture in front of us as much as He is trying to tell a story through us” (Reggie Joiner, Parenting Beyond Your Capacity, 44)

•         Faith begins @ Home:

•         News from the World of Youth Culture, from CPYU.ORG:

•         Check out, a great place for articles, resources and youth culture:, and Check out their monthly newsletter:

•         More youth culture stuff. Mom and Dad, this is just stuff you need to know:

•             New Book, in what is the third installment from the NSYR, out of Chapel Hill, NC:

The NSYR project is pleased to announce the release of A Faith of Their Own:  Stability and Change in the Religiosity of America’s Adolescents (Oxford University Press, 2011) by Lisa D. Pearce and Melinda Lundquist Denton.

Adding to the contributions made by Soul Searching and Souls in Transition–two books which revolutionized our understanding of the religious lives of young Americans–Lisa Pearce and Melinda Lundquist Denton offer a new portrait of teenage faith and its dynamics during adolescence in A FAITH OF THEIR OWN.

Drawing on data from the National Study of Youth and Religion’s telephone surveys and in-depth interviews at two points in time, the authors chart the spiritual trajectory of these adolescents over a period of three years. Pearce and Denton weave in fascinating portraits of actual youth to give depth to mere numerical rankings of religiosity, which tend to prevail in large studies. One teenager might rarely attend a service, yet count herself profoundly religious; another might be deeply involved in a church’s social world, yet claim to be “not, like, deep into the faith.” They provide a new set of qualitative categories–Abiders, Assenters, Adapters, Avoiders, and Atheists–quoting from interviews to illuminate the shading between them. And, with their three-year study, they offer a rich understanding of the dynamic nature of faith in young people’s lives during a period of rapid change in biology, personality, and social interaction. Not only do degrees of religiosity change, but so does its nature, whether expressed in institutional practices or personal belief.

By presenting a new model of religious development and change, illustrated with compelling personal accounts of real teenagers, A FAITH OF THEIR OWN offer parents, scholars, and religious leaders a new guide for understanding religious development in teens.

A Faith of Their Own: Stability and Change in the Religiosity of America’s Adolescents

by Lisa D. Pearce and Melinda Lundquist Denton, published in hardcover by Oxford University Press 2011 ($24.95 | 248 pages | ISBN13: 9780199753895).



Project # 1

Please help with this new project! I need letters in by Sunday! Leave opening line blank, but boys will write to boys and girls to girls! I was asked recently to help out the Tipton’s Children’s Home. The woman from the community knew that they were affiliated with the Church of Christ, and knew that we have a loving and active church family. She has asked our teens to write letters to the kids there. Often times these young people get overlooked and left out, and we have been given an opportunity to share our lives with these special kids. I am reminded of what Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians 2:7-8, “Just as a nursing mother cares for her children, 8 so we cared for you. Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well. So, I am asking you this Christmas to share your life with these young people. I will be sending an e-mail later this week to get the names of these young people, and how to contact them. Please join me in writing letters. I’d like to have some letters to send to the Tipton Children Home kids as soon as possible!! Adults can participate too!

Project # 2: Give a Goat (

I want to share some information directly from the Give a Goat webpage:

“Give a Goat is a 501(c)3 pending nonprofit based out of Oklahoma. We believe that poverty can only be eradicated through development and sustainable growth. We believe in empowering individuals and communities to help themselves. Women and children are our key focus because they are our future. One Goat. One Goal. To end poverty by addressing the center of the problem.

Over 30% of people in the Philippines live below the national poverty line of less than $1 a day. Give a Goat was started by Salvador Cariaga, a native to the Philippines, in an effort to combat this severe epidemic of poverty. By providing goats to impoverished families we are able to create sustainability, self-sufficiency, and longevity. Family after family, community after community, we have seen our program change lives, and our efforts don’t stop with the goats. We teach goat raisers to use the goats as a centerpiece for more change. Goat manure goes to create organic farms. Goats milk provides nutrition as well as the key ingredient in self-manufactured goats milk soap. And we didn’t stop there. We have expanded to build orphanages, feeding stations, medical services, clean water wells, and jewelry and craft making. It is our goal to keep growing, while remaining faithful to our values of sustainability and benevolence.”

This organization was started by a couple of OC students who wanted to make a tangible difference. So, by raising $50.00 we can purchase a goat for a family overseas, and this goat will help them become self-sufficient. So, our youth group is collecting change to give a goat to a family in need. Please consider joining us!

Project # 3: Wee Praise…

Every Sunday after communion, our 2 year olds through Kindergartners have an opportunity to worship God on their level and you teens and parents have an opportunity to be an extension of the heart of God for children. There is a sign-up sheet in the foyer on the Children’s Ministry Board, please check it out and sign-up. We need you!!!!


About Jason Retherford

The random musings of a youth minister.
This entry was posted in church, Jesus, Stuff, Youth Ministry. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to The Trail Student Ministries Midweek update: Wednesday, February 22, 2011

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