Archive for the ‘Church’ Category

General Assembly 2013!

Posted: July 8, 2013 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Announcements, Church, Fun Stuff, General Assembly, Music, Prayer, Technology, Worship

YOUNG ADULT EVENT GUIDE!

Meet up with other Young Adult at the YAC table in the DHM booth.

Saturday July 13 at 9pm Meet up with old and new friends at Mallards Lobby bar in the Peabody Hotel Lobby to make plans for the week!

 

Sunday July 14 at 9pm Illusionist and Magician Ron Diamond (no one under 18 will be permitted).

 

Monday July 15 at 9pm we will be joining up with DJAN(Disciples Justice Action Network) for a special concert with Andra Moran!

 

Tuesday July 16 at 9pm Meet in the Peabody Lobby before we head up to the DHM Suite for an exciting conversation about the future of Young Adult Leadership in the Church!

 

Check out our booth in the exhibit hall, Facebook, and Twitter for the location of these events and other social gathering that might come up throughout the Assembly!

 

Young Adults will find the learning tracks (Sunday – Wednesday) to be full of opportunities that will interest them. Below are the topics for each learning track. Check out the entire schedule of learning tracks either online or in the business docket.

Stewardship

Arts & Media

Missional Transformation

Spirituality

On Sunday following worship there are many learning opportunities that will be of interest to Young Adults in attendance. Check out these options; find their course description as well as others opportunities online or in the business docket.

Interfaith Engagement: Exploring how Christians relate to persons of other world religions

Welcoming All Our Families, Especially LGBTQI

Understanding Immigration

Human Trafficking

Voice of the Prophets: Advocacy for the Poor and Hungry

Radically Inclusive: Growing a Truly Multi-Cultural Church

Discerning Leaders: Understanding the guiding principles of the executive searches in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)

Considering Seminary?

Child Friendly Disciple Congregations

As well as Multiple Learning Tracks from Overseas Ministries/Global Ministries; Church partners, other church cultures, and much more.

Advertisements

Clear the Chaos

Posted: March 1, 2012 by abrownlaj in Church, Devotionals, Young Adult Stories

We are 9 days into the Lenten season. Typically Lent is a time of reflection, repentance, and renewal. However many of us might still find ourselves caught up in the chaos of the everyday. How can we seek to find the Divine in the midst of pandemonium and three ring circus behavior we see around us?  How can we spend time reflecting? How can we focus on what we have done and ask forgiveness?  How can we find a quiet moment to renew our spirits? I don’t have a clear cut straight forward answer to any of these questions. I struggle to answer them for myself almost daily. Little steps, deep breaths, and extreme amounts of coffee seem to work for me, some times.

In the introduction to the devotion book The Balancing Act: A Daily Rediscovering of Grace, Robert Schnase says “Living in fast-forward, we neglect the interior life and the spiritual journey and misperceive the signs of God’s presence.” This statement caused me to think about the times I should have slowed down, taken a deep breath, and noticed that God was working far more efficiently than I was. How do we answer the questions above? The tough answer-WE have to make the effort. WE have to make the time. WE (you and I) not God, not our family- WE have to do it. The easy answer- WE have to make the effort. WE have to make the time. WE (you and I) not God, not our family- WE have to do it.

One of the devotions in this book talks about walking a labyrinth as a spiritual discipline. Perhaps this Lenten season you are still looking for a way to reflect, repent, and renew your self. Try following the path of this Finger Labyrinth(there are instructions at the bottom once you click the link).

May you seek to find God in the ordinary. Little steps, deep breaths…the chaos will clear(eventually).

A Prayer to End the Week

Posted: February 11, 2012 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Bible Study, Church, Devotionals, Prayer

Kathy Rothfus

My God,

Thank you for this opportunity to have come closer to you.  I am blessed to know that others have come to you through these devotions and your Scripture.  I am growing to know that I am not alone.  Thank you for each other.  Thank you for our Church.  Thank you for your Word.  Thank you for sending Christ Jesus.

I pray that each morning I wake not overwhelmed by tasks but reminded of your unconditional love.  I pray that each noon I hunger not for this world but for your Word.  I pray that each evening I settle not in contentment but I strive for more.  I pray that each evening I sleep not restlessly but in your comforting arms.

May I never stop leaning on you.  May I never stop thanking You.   Amen.

Let’s go and be reconciled

Posted: February 10, 2012 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Bible Study, Church, Devotionals, Prayer

Jeremy Dewitt, YAC Member

The Offering Prerequisite                                       Matthew 5:23-24 NIV

“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.”

I’ve grown up in the church. Church life (and all that goes with it) seems as natural to me as breathing. I love every aspect: the worship, the praise, the service, the preaching, the teaching, the special events, the ministry, and even the meetings to further the ministry. The only problem with all of this is that I have always done each of these things with people who look like me, who talk like me, who worship like me, who have the same musical tastes as me and expect the same call and response from the preacher as me. At times, I hear talks of our church reaching out to the community around us, but the fruits of the outreach oftentimes attract people who fit into the same cultural mold. This is despite the fact that our congregation sits in the middle of one of the most culturally diverse areas of the city of Memphis. However, the church continues to grow and add new members every week. That makes it okay, right?

Differences in culture and geographical origins in conjunction with historical strife have created chasms and scars that are deeply ingrained into our society. On the surface, we have been able to overcome the existence of the scars in many aspects of everyday life. However, Sunday morning worship continues to be the most segregated segment of many of our lives.  Taking this into consideration, we have to ask ourselves how valid our message of an inclusive God is when it is preached from segregated pews. We also must ask ourselves how valuable our offering of praise is when we haven’t reconciled with our brothers and sisters of different cultures.

Today, let’s take the first step. Let’s pray for the courage to reach out to those who may not look like us or speak like us. Let’s ask God for His divine power to heal the scars of history. Let’s go and be reconciled.

My New Babel Table Glasses

Posted: February 9, 2012 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Bible Study, Church, Devotionals, Prayer

Aaron Jamison, YAC Member

I remember very clearly getting my first pair of glasses in the 3rd grade.  I remember how different the world looked when I put them on.  I could suddenly read signs, identify people, and witness God’s beautiful creations from a distance.  Even the night lights and stars in the sky looked different with my new glasses.  It was like I was given new eyes from which to view my world.  What a wondererous gift.

My latest pair of glasses can’t be bought at any eyeglass store though.  They can only be acquired through immersing yourself into discussions of racism, multiculturalism, and poverty.  This past summer I had such an experience through an event called Babel Table.

Bable Table brought together a diverse group of young adult Disciples to discuss and experience these topics firsthand.  The idea was to help young adults witness and understand how the world looks from different cultural perspectives so that we can help the church become more multicultural and inclusive.  The scriptural basis for Babel Table comes from the Tower of Babel story in Genesis.

Genes 11:5-9 (NSRV)

5 The Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which mortals had built. 6 And the Lord said, “Look, they are one people, and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do; nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them. 7 Come, let us go down, and confuse their language there, so that they will not understand one another’s speech.” 8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city. 9 Therefore it was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.

One way to understand this passage is that multiculturalism is a gift from God meant to be shared and celebrated.

My Babel Table experience was one in which I will never forget.  The diverse cultural and racial experiences that each individual brought to the table expanded my understanding and thinking of multiculturalism.  There was open and safe conversation among us in sharing how our cultural experiences shaped our perception of the world around us.  The four day experience also included racism and poverty training as well as missional projects to further broaden our understandings.

The theme for this Young Adult Week is “Go and be Reconciled.”  The theme for the Young Adult Conference which is going to be held in Memphis from October 19th – 21st will also be a theme of Reconciliation.  The Babel Table’s goals of multiculturalism and inclusiveness in the church fits these themes of Reconciliation.  So I’m so very excited that the Young Adult Commission will be working in partnership with the Council on Christian Unity, Reconciliation Ministries, and other Disciple Ministries to take the Babel Table events to the regions beginning this fall.  This partnership will be exhibited at the Young Adult Conference in October which will include pieces of the Babel Table experience for young adults to get a taste of this experience.

As for me, I can confidently say that my new Babel Table glasses have changed my life.  I look at the world around me differently now than what I once did.  I can more easily recognize the systemic poverty and racism that continues to plague our society.  I can see how white privilege has shaped the communities that surround us.  Most importantly, though, I can see hope for a future of multiculturalism, inclusiveness, and reconciliation.  This movement needs to start in our churches and with the young adults of today that will be the future leaders of tomorrow.  My hope and my prayer is that as many of us as possible will get our own Babel Table glasses and that together we can make change happen in our own churches and communities.

I want to be reconciled

Posted: February 8, 2012 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Bible Study, Church, Devotionals, Prayer

Alex McCauslin, YAC Member

 I want to be reconciled.

I hear the call.

But it’s so hard.

It’s hard because I have to open myself up to the reality that I have been broken. And more, that I continue to be broken.

Every conversation I enter about privilege breaks open for me another way in which I am complicit in systems of oppression.

Near: The University I attend operates on the backs of community members whose children will never be able to attend. They cook the food. They cut the grass. They clean the toilets. But they don’t make enough to pay this tuition.

(My parents are lawyers. I graduated from college debt-free.)

And far: The shirt on my back was made in a sweatshop. A rain forest was slashed and burned so I could eat a banana on my breakfast this morning.

(I learned these things at a recent dinner party, replying with a scandalized, “Oh gosh!” and then returning to my spinach and blue cheese salad.)

I know these things, but what can I do?

This much is certain: I can’t change anything by myself.

Reconciliation is about wholeness, and I am only a part. Jesus didn’t say discipleship would be easy, but he also didn’t say to do it alone. We need to meet, first in brokenness, me, you, our brothers, our neighbors, our enemies, and Jesus, and let’s do it around the Lord’s Table.

Redeemed!

Posted: February 7, 2012 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Bible Study, Church, Devotionals, Prayer

Katherine Blaisdell, YAC Member

Jesus Cleanses the Temple   John 2:13-22

 The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money-changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, ‘Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a market-place!’ His disciples remembered that it was written, ‘Zeal for your house will consume me.’ The Jews then said to him, ‘What sign can you show us for doing this?’ Jesus answered them, ‘Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.’ The Jews then said, ‘This temple has been under construction for forty-six years, and will you raise it up in three days?’ But he was speaking of the temple of his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this; and they believed the scripture and the word that Jesus had spoken.

The story of Easter is one of redemption. God comes to earth, walks among creation, and when earthly life is over, the body is redeemed, risen anew. In that act, we too are redeemed.

How does that work, exactly? Think of the time you most often hear the word “redeem.” Right now you think of the churchy bit of theological jargon, but you hear the word all the time. From recycled bottles to arcade tokens, bits of stuff are redeemed all the time. They are turned over, and in return, something is received.

The story of Jesus and the money changers is about redemption in a certain way. The merchants of the temple traded currency, so that travelers could make their monetary offerings, and sold sacrificial animals and other offerings, sort of like the gift shops selling incense in cathedrals. They redeemed secular goods for sacred. The problem, though, was that it was not a one-to-one trade. They capitalized on their market monopoly to bilk worshipers of their money as they performed spiritual rites. The redemption they offered was partial at best, and Jesus was affronted, enraged, by their commerce. He demanded of them full redemption.

Jesus’ message, though, was not just for the money changers. To be redeemed, we too must turn ourselves over. It is awfully easy to put our spiritual lives at the bottom of our priority lists when things get busy, set aside like so many bags of crushed soda cans and empty beer bottles till we have a chance to deal with it. We are saved by grace; there is no question. But our day to day lives, our minutes and decisions, must be given to God if we expect anything to be done with them. Just like those bottles sitting on your porch, you cannot, as a co-creator with God, be made into something new without surrendering the old. You must do the work to be reconciled to your enemy, to yourself, to your world. You must turn yourself over to be redeemed. In the words of one of my favorite theologians, God loves you exactly as you are and too much to let you stay that way.

God of Creation, be the still small voice of encouragement, reminding me to turn over what I would have you redeem. When I forget, startle me into action with the insistence of one who would cleanse the temple and raise it again. Teach me your ways O God, and walk with me on that path as I stumble. In your name, holy in heaven and earth, Amen.

Reconcile Yourself

Posted: February 6, 2012 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Bible Study, Church, Devotionals, Prayer

Andrea Brownlee, YAC Member

James 1: 25

But the person who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what they heard, but doing it- they will be blessed in what they do.

 Jeremiah 17: 7-8

Blessed are those who trust in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord. They shall be like a tree planted by water, sending out its roots by the stream. It shall not fear when heat comes, and its leaves shall stay green; in the year of drought it is not anxious, and it does not cease to bear fruit. 

 Have you ever heard a story and wanted to share it but then forget how it even starts? It seems we sometimes do that with scriptures, sermons, or devotions we hear. In the moment we think, “I want to remember that”, “share that”, “live like that”. But then it happens. We get to a place where we can share what we have heard and we freeze up.

When we strengthen our roots, through spiritual exercises, and continue to share what we have heard in our time with God that is when we will notice that our lives are bearing fruit!

Reconcile yourself today to share the Gospel with everyone you meet!

 Strengthening God, Show me how to share what I hear in our time together, that I might bear fruit in your name. Amen.

A Prayer to Begin the Week

Posted: February 5, 2012 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Bible Study, Church, Devotionals, Prayer

Justin Floyd, YAC Member

God of understanding and Grace,
We gather to explore, discover and grow into who you call us to be. As your children we will always look to you for guidance and understanding even as we enter into the adults you have created us to be. We pause today to give thanks for the lesson we learned as children, the experiences that led us to where we are today, and the eager anticipation for our individual and collective futures.

God, you guide us and you walk with us, we ask that you help us remember to humble ourselves and let you continue to be part of our lives. As you use us to lead others, we confess that we get in our own way, and ignore your presence, help us be the people and the church that you want us to be.

We thank you for the church, we thank you for your continued presence, and we thank you for the constant Grace you send our way.

It is in the name of the living Christ we pray, Amen.

Young Adult Week Devotions!

Posted: February 3, 2012 by Disciples Young Adult Commission in Announcements, Bible Study, Church, Devotionals, Prayer

Young Adult Week is coming!

February 5-11 there will be devotions available for you to read and enjoy! The members of Young Adult Commission of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) hope you grow in your faith in the coming year!

Blessings to you!