Friday, January 14, 2011

Axis Wrap Up 1-12-11 The Path

I'm pretty excited about the next 5 weeks in our youth ministry. We started a new series on Wednesday called The Path and it all revolves around the idea that the direction we choose to go will determine where we end up. This week was a set up for the rest of the series. I tried to be really blunt and really honest with our kids and shared with them how we often play the "victim" role in life when in reality many times our situation is simply a result of a path we willingly chose to go down. Every path has a destination and our direction determines where we end up. So often we get angry with God for how things are going in our life but the reality is that many times our situation in life is based on our own decisions.

We looked at a story in Matthew 19:16 - 22 about a guy who desired a specific thing for his life but when offered the path to get there, refused to take it. I shared some examples revolving around dating, grades, family life, weight, and our relationship with God. So many times I'll hear teenagers say that they want to have great relationships or great grades or they want their family life to be better ... but I honestly shared with them that what I so often see are kids not taking a path that will lead to those things. I encouraged our kids to think about where they want to be at the end of the year in several different areas of life and then honestly ask the question "Is the path I'm currently on leading there?"

I wrapped up our night by letting our kids know that the awesome thing about God is that He always provides an exit ramp to the right path. If we've made poor choices or feel like we're going in a wrong direction I told them the "ABC's" of getting on the right path:

Acknowledge you need God's help. We can't do it on our own and often don't want to do it on our own.
Believe God has big plans for you. God's word tells us that He wants us to live a life in freedom and victory. His word tells us that He wants our lives to flourish and prosper. His word tells us that He wants us to have an "abundant" life. But, if we don't believe that we won't live that.
Confess. If we've been on wrong paths, just be honest with God and confess it to Him. Ask Him to help you get on the right path.

Psalm 40:2 says "He (God) lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand." I so long for our students to have a firm place to stand and I long for their lives to flourish. My prayer is that this series will help them understand (and help me to better understand) how to set my life on a path for success.

Next Week: The Path to a Healthy Life

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