Today, it seems like young people aren’t interested in God. Jon shares his story of how God made himself present in an everyday class.
Immersed in the everyday setting of today’s youth, schools, Jon has been able to lead classes, assemblies and discipleship work.
Currently, it can be quite daunting in schools with heightened pressures not to preach or share too much of faith. However, God is moving in our schools!
Jon shares with us of a moment when he was able to have the opportunity to show God in a local secondary school. Because of one inquisitive pupil, God showed up. Jon shares;
“A few weeks ago, a colleague and I had the opportunity to teach a few classes on Christian identity in a local secondary school, and in our last class of the day God dropped an amazing opportunity right into my lap.
“At the end of the class, we had left 10 or so minutes for a “Grill a Christian” session. The young people could ask us any question in relation to faith that they had, and we would try to answer.
“After fielding a few of the usual suspects, one girl asked a question neither my colleague or I ever expected; “would you pray for us?”
I turned to the teacher in the room watching us, and asked if he was fine with this, expecting a “no”; but he said yes! And so, with the teacher’s permission, I got to pray for 30 young people, in a classroom, in the middle of a school day!
“I left the classroom afterward giddy with excitement about what God had done. It was just such a clear reminder that nothing is out of God’s control; even in spaces where we are told we have to be super careful to not preach or share “too much”, He is alive, He is moving, and He is constantly full of surprises!
“So, I just want to encourage you; God is moving in our schools! ” – Jon Stark
You can watch Jon’s Story with God and Reign Ministries in the video above.
If you are interested in how our young people today are responding to faith and more about their culture, look out for our upcoming blogs on Understanding Gen Z.
Our students spent the week preparing for the FUTURE! We are crazy about these young men and women and we think God is going to use them in mighty ways to build his Kingdom. They have avoided the path of least resistance and are doing hard and holy things. Take two minutes to see how God prepared them this week.
Part of my job at Reign Ministries is this thing called Brand Coordinator. A Brand Coordinator is a rather recent invention for businesses and charities to control, err umm manage, their reputation across all the available social media platforms. Does that sound like greek to you? Me too. I’m a youth minister by training, not a tech-savy advertising expert, but we are learning and trying to refine our messages in order to help people join us.
So, this week when I was doing my usual rounds on our website and Facebook I noticed this new group. It’s called Reign Students. Hmph! I’ve not heard of this group. Surely the Brand Coordinator- who is responsible for managing our reputation- should know about any groups with our name on it, right? How come no one told me about this group?
After I got over myself (that took about 3 seconds) what I read made my heart sing. Do you see it there? In the red circle? The way they described themselves? “Online community of missional disciplemakers.” And then below it- Group type: Family.
This Brand Coordinator couldn’t have written it better herself. We long to see a new generation of missional disciplemakers being birthed for the church. We work as a community who cares for each other as family. To see this generation of students- who, for the most part are under 23 years of age- identify themselves as disciplemakers and take the movement forward- this is our greatest joy. Be blessed dear students. And I’m not even mad that you didn’t invite me to your group.
The start of another degree year has arrived! Our Reign family welcomed in new students from England, Scotland, and Austria. This first conference was a joyful week of returning students reuniting and welcoming in the new year group.
We heard story after story of ways God has brought each person into this community of students. They are starting in new placement churches and youth projects within their home regions and we are sure God will use them in powerful ways to impact teenagers in these next few years and beyond.
To kick off the new year, one of our Year 2 students shares his thoughts:
Looking forward to year 2 I’m most excited about setting up new projects that we learned last year such as Target Groups and Mentoring. I hope for our ministry to reach out to new groups of teenagers this year but also support and care for those who already attend our various activities. Through doing the youth ministry degree program I am now team leader of our youth ministry and of course with that comes challenges but doing my degree alongside is ideal as I continue to train both in youth work techniques and also my theology. It enables me to delve deeper with the youth and answer their questions and challenge them myself.
Being on placement has led me to discover other methods and I have met many people this year involved in youth work who have taught and shared so much. Most strategies taught at conference would be forgotten or only theory if not applied in a placement and thus having a placement gives a chance to experiment these new techniques and then share successes or challenges.
I would not be experiencing and learning so much if not for the practical experience and amazing personal support. It really is the best of both worlds.
We’re excited to join and support students like Sam who are working to see the church come alive with teenagers reaching teenagers with Christ’s message of hope. This degree year is sure to be filled with many more enthusiastic stories and efforts as our students develop in their youth work placements.
The degree year is complete! Our final conference was all about relaxing, celebrating, and learning in community together. We loved having Steve Addison, author of Movements that Change the World, with us this conference. And it was great to have our alumni visit as well! For a look at the fun and learning that took place with all our students and staff, click play and enjoy the next 90 seconds.
This year’s lectures are done! All that remains are those final essays and assignments. So to wrap up the year, we asked an important question: “What do you love about conference?” Enjoy a brief look at what the students had to share.
These young leaders are being equipped to serve young people, lead teams of volunteers and make disciples in their churches. Take 3 minutes to hear how God shaped them during this past week’s conference.