The Higher Calling

Originally published March 2003.

I've been in this youth ministry "game" for 21 years. I remember time after time hearing youth speaker after youth speaker put out the call for youth to go into full-time ministry. While I have great respect for those who decide to spend their lives on the mission field (and we need more of these), I have come under a huge conviction that today we need to put out the greater call for our youth to be video game programmers, TV producers, government policy makers, scientists, Boys & Girls Club directors, and writers. I am married to a magazine editor and his work and witness reaches more and influences more than I ever will in full-time ministry. He is also in a position to be the moral influence on his entire industry. This provides for me life lessons on jealousy as I follow my call as the evangelist and live vicariously through him.

Setting the Challenge

Originally published January 2001.

I read an article lately that has really "stuck in my craw." What does that colloquialism literally mean? I'm assuming because my spellcheck didn't correct "craw" (but does not consider spellcheck correct) that I have the correct word. I don't know what it really means but that is what I have come up with again and again in trying to describe how this article has not let me go. (

The article is about Randy Bohlender's trip with four friends to Burning Man. Burning Man is an underground gathering of 30,000 pagans, artists, free spirits and wanderers who come together for a week of art and parties, culminating in the erection of a 52-foot tall wooden man outlined in neon. In the end, that man is burned and thrown into the fire as a sacrifice along with all of their art. Randy and his friends' mission was to give out 5,000 bottles of water as a prophetic gesture of what God wants to do in their lives. The article contains what they learned. Good pondering stuff. It is Observation #2 that has "stuck in my craw." It is "I do find it weird that the church strives to convenience people when people really thrive on challenge."

Is It On The Test? (Early Version)

Originally published in April 1993

“It’s not that you (Baby Boomers) didn’t love us; you loved us so much you pushed us to follow your idea of what you were-or would like to have been—instead of teaching us to be responsible.After legitimizing youthful rebellion you never let us have our own innocence—perhaps because Vietnam and Watergate shattered yours.That’s why we’re already mature enough to understand and worry about racism, the environment, abortion, the homeless, nuclear policy.But we also were fed on the video culture you created to idealize your own irresponsible days of youth.Your slim and trip MTV bimbos, fleshy beer commercials, and racy TV shows presented adolescence as a time only for fun and sex.Why should we be expected to work at learning anything?”