Tuesday, November 25, 2008

For those of you that have heard the story...

This will be hilarious. For those of you who haven't...we'll tell it again some night if you ask nicely. =D  (ps.  Be SURE to read the post below this one....it has LOTS of important info...about parties and such!!!)

It's like they made this sign for Melanie...about 6 months too late!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Party Time!!

1.  Thanks to all of you who made it out for the Thanksgiving Service Sunday night.  I hope you were all encouraged by the meeting of churches and reminded of the true reason we pig out on Thursday! =) 

2.  Take Pastor Dale's challenge:  prayer each day this week without asking for anything but only thanking God (for your life, for the day, for the people in your world, for forgiveness, etc)

3.  REMINDER:  NO Spirit Fire this Sunday November 30th.  Happy Thanksgiving!  

4.  Keep in mind I will still be asking you about Ephesians 2:8-9.   Anyone memorized it yet?  

5.  "The Christmas Shoes" skit:::Sunday December 7th at the 11am church service.  We will need to rehearse and here's what I'm proposing:
Friday night party @ the parsonage!  December 5th @ 7pm.  We'll have food, tons of board games, video games, movies, dish t.v., and more!  At some point we'll run over to the church to practice our skit and then run back to just hang out together!  You can leave whenever you need to but we'll ask everyone to be picked up by 10pm.  

6.  SBC Winter Retreat registration due to ME by December 4th.  Please include @ least $25 toward the total $69 cost.  (hint:  ask your parents or grandparents or good friends or aunts and uncles if you need to raise the money.)

7.  Oh, and one more thing!  the Never-Ending Bake Sale:::
 I have decided to start a sort of baking business where I take orders for things like cookies, cakes, breads, and pies and the money I make will go toward the youth group fund to help us get to retreats and conferences and more!  

So....TELL YOUR PARENTS.  Does someone in your family have a sweet tooth?  Do they need extra baking done for a holiday party? Do they want to support the youth ministry?  Call Melanie @ 734.384.0839 and place an order (at least a week in advance.)  

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A quick update

Just a quick reminder and a new thought as well.  This Sunday youth group will be a bit different since we'll be attending the Thanksgiving Service @ 7pm.  I would really encourage you all to attend...and bring your families!  I would love to meet everyone!  Oh, and I'm singing. =D  lol.

As for 6pm...we'll meet at our place and pretty much hang out for a bit before the service.  You know, play games, eat food, etc.  (Anyone who hasn't brought a snack wanna bring something to share???)  Also, I'm hoping to get in a bit of brainstorming and practice time for the "Christmas Shoes" skit we talked about doing at a Sunday morning service.  

Hope to see you Sunday!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Important stuff from 11.16.08

1.  Shelby, thanks so much for the delicious snacks!  Make sure to thank your mom again for us!!! 
 Also, I forgot to ask if anyone else would be willing to bring a snack for next week?????
2.  Next Sunday (11.23.08):::Come to the parsonage at 6pm to work on the skit we will be performing in church on Sunday November 30th.  Also at 7:00pm Spirit Fire joins the community in a Thanksgiving Service @ 7pm at the church.

3.  Registration Forms for SBC Winter Retreat due to Melanie as soon as possible (Dec. 5th at the latest!)  I forgot to mention this but invite your friends!!!  It'll be even cooler that way!

4.  ephesians 2:8-9:::For it is by grace you have been saved, through faithand this not from yourselves, it is the gift of Godnot by works, so that no one can boast.  

Don't forget about:
romans 3:23
john 3:16-17

Learn them.  Be awesome.  Win prizes.  Made God smile. =D

5.  Topic for the night:::Salvation

You guys did a great job of working through the questions I threw at you.  
First of all, what is salvation?  To be given freedom from the punishment of eternal death in hell because of our sins.  
Why do I need to be saved?  Because Adam & Eve's sin in the Garden of Eden was passed down to us.  Remember??  "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."  
Why does our sin matter that much?  God is holy and cannot allow any sin (or unrighteousness) into his presence.  Romans 3:10 tells us that "There is no one righteous, not even one."  
What is the punishment for our sins (for even one sin)?  We will be eternally separated from God and "thrown into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth" (Matthew 13:41-43).  

What's our way out?  How can we be saved from this punishment?  Read the verses after Romans 3:23.  Not only are all sinful and unable to reach God, but we are offered the FREE gift of redemption (that is salvation) because of the sacrifice of Jesus' death.  If you are saved by Jesus' blood, when God looks at you he no longer sees your sins, but his Son's perfect blood covering it.  Then and ONLY then can you live eternally in God's presence!

So.  Thoughts? Questions?  Comments?  Anyone get reminded of the great salvation they have received?  Anyone accept this salvation for the first time??  Let's talk!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Stuff you need to know. cool stuff. [11.09.08]

1.  Dear SpiritFire,  
As your new youth pastor, I have to admit that I truly appreciate each and every one of you.  If just one of you decides not to show up or participate the quality of our youth group would go way down, but you guys are dedicated.  Thanks for your friendship, your involvement, and your growing passion!  I can't WAIT to join you in having a great time at these sweet upcoming events and I hope all of you will look forward to them!  (Make sure you check out the pictures I posted at the bottom!)

2.  Spring Arbor University Men's Basketball Game.  Saturday, January 10th, 2009 @ 3pm.  Free admission.  Free pop & pizza. Free prizes.  Free look at the greatest college ever. *wink*   
Anyone interested?  Email Mel with your thoughts. 

3.  Winter Retreat @ Somerset Beach Campground.  

Sledding, skating, making new friends, delicious meals, playing, having fun with counselors and leaders, broom hockey, prayer, spending time with old friends, toboggans, laughing, snacking, keeping warm by the fire, singing, games, learning, making memories. 

Registration Forms (and min. deposit of $25) due to Melanie by November 30th.  Total cost:  $69.  Find more registration forms here.
  • Young Teens (6th-8th): Jan. 30th-Feb. 1st
  • Senior Teens (9th-12th):  Feb. 6th-8th
4.  Fundraiser ideas?  Need scholarship money to get to Dare2Share in April?  Let Mel know right away! (melanieeccles@gmail.com in case you forgot.) 

5.  Have a few extra dollars to put toward shipping costs of the operation christmas child shoeboxes?  Pass it to Mel and she'll get it where it needs to go.  (honest!  I won't spend a dime!)  
6.  Should be memorized:  John 3:16-17.  New to be memorized (much shorter!):  Romans 3:23:  "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."  

7.  Topic of the Evening:  SIN.  

We discussed what sin is.  It's anything that does not completely abide by the laws of God set out for us in the Bible.  All of God's laws are summed up in these two commands:  "love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it:  Love your neighbor as yourself."   

Every sin anyone will ever commit will either take love away from God or take love away from another person.  Craziness!  You can do something wrong (steal, gossip, murder, disrespect, etc.) or you can sin by not doing something you should (helping the person being bullied, telling the truth, etc.) OR you can sin in your thoughts (by having a spiteful attitude, by hating someone, by wanting revenge, etc.)

We read the story in Genesis 3:1-19 that describes the Fall of Man.  Do you remember the 6 aspects of this sinful situation that are a part of every sin we commit?  [temptation.  rationalization:  coming up with reasons for your behavior that satisfy you but are ultimately incorrect.  guilt:  felt immediately or hidden and eating away at your conscience.  confrontation:  being caught in the act or later on, having to go back to the person your sinned against and make it right, etc.  blame.  consequences.  for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. (romans 3:23)]

But don't forgot:  that's NOT the end of the story.  God rocks.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


1)  Hi, everyone!  Thanks for being awesome at filling shoeboxes on Sunday.  Many of you went beyond the basics and I'm so proud of how you sacrificed.  This week I am challenging EACH of you to search your house and/or ask your parents to help you get together enough supplies to fill another shoebox.  We have 13 boxes left to meet our goal.  I think we can do it!  

I know money is definitely a reason to not fill a shoebox, but here's what I'm thinking.  If you normally spend a dollar here and 50 cents there on snacks or other stuff for yourself, this week go without those extra luxaries and save about $10 to make one very needy child's Christmas amazing!!  

If you've already filled a box or 3, try saving some cash to put in the boxes to help with shipping costs!

2)  Memory Verse of the week (for the 2nd time!): JOHN 3:16-17

16"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him."

Write it down on a card and keep it in your planner, have a friend or parent quiz you, repeat it over and over and over.  You can DO IT.  It might be hard at first, but it gets easier.  You'll be professional before you know it!

3)  Check out Kevin's ridiculous post below this one. :)

A Gift From Kevin, to you.

This guy was absolutely FAMOUS back when I was in high school. If you haven't seen it ever, please click ONCE below. If you click more than once, it'll start stuttering, and I can't be held responsible for the annoying echo that you figure out at the very end was a second window open with the movie playing twice.

Yes, I know, it was hilarious. You're welcome. See you guys next Sunday at our place, NOT THE CHURCH. See you then.