We had a man come in our offices last week who asked me if I was interested in writing a monthly youth article for the Christian Family Publications paper. I asked him to let me think about…and then 2 seconds later, I said “YES!” So maybe this is the real deal, and maybe not. Who knows. Time will tell. But I’m pretty stoked about it! This would be some type of monthly periodical that will be released up in the north Alabama area. Anywho, here’s the article I submitted for this month. For those that know me, I didn’t pull any punches…AGAIN 🙂
All my friends were laughing at me while I was writhing in pain! During my high school summers, my friends and I would go pool-hopping nearly every day. On one sunny day, we hit up a pool at a house on the lake…sweet! As I was doing back flips off the board, I didn’t jump far enough out, and I landed on my chest on the board. It sprung me back into the water. I sunk like a rock, managed to swim back up, roll onto the concrete, and lay there writhing in pain while my friends were laughing at me. While out of school, summers were always unforgettable.
Because summer is creeping up, we should start thinking ahead for our students. The summer months can often be a spiritual “make it” or “break it” experience with all the free time, lack of schedule, and little structure involved. How can you encourage your student to stay faithful over their summer? Encourage them to keep Jesus Christ at the center of their life. No, I’m not talking about the Jesus we often hear of who sounds a like sheep-petting, green tea drinking, and dress-wearing sissy. I’m talking about the real Jesus who is a real King, a real Lord, and a real God (Rev 19). We need to constantly remind our students to be mindful of Him in His person and work. His person is who He is as fully God and as fully man. He is the exalted King, and He is the returning Judge. His work is what He has done, is doing, and will do. This includes stuff like His sinless life, His death, His resurrection, His present Lordship, and His eternal rule. Mindfulness of Christ makes all the difference for a student’s faithful summer!
Challenging your student keeps the church as a priority over the summer since the church is the fullness of Christ (Eph 1:22-23). Encourage your student to continue in Christian fellowship over the summer like a small group or just a group of friends so they have good, Christian fun with accountability (1 John 1:3). Hold your student accountable to be in the Word daily over the summer as the Bible constantly points us to Christ (Luke 24:27). Always counsel your student with the gospel over the summer to keep Christ’s person and work at the forefront of their mind (Philippians 2:2).