FALL 2020 THEME OVERVIEW
– FROM GOD: HOPE X POWER –
How much power is in a blue check, a platinum play button, a stadium chanting, and wearing your name? If fame is the power that comes from being known by many, what happens when the All-Powerful and All-Knowing wears your name? Does it change how you move in the world? What happens when you’re given more than influence; what happens when you’re given pure power? What do you do with it?
Here’s what we know: Compared to God’s power, the world’s standard of power is a fragile substitute, a cheap counterfeit. Influence and fame seem to be aspirations worth risking it all for, meanwhile we show up to every other area of life offering our leftover energy and numbed-out apathy. What if every teenager believed they could harness, activate, and wield God’s power? What if an entire generation walked through life with everyday bravery, awakened to—and aware of—God’s power alive in them?
Are we just closed-eyes-fingers-crossed wishing the future might possibly, maybe, turn out well? Or are we bold-faced and full of hope as we play our part in making the future good? Do we trust God won’t let us down and will play His part through us? Is our trust in fame and influence stronger than our hope in the Good News?
Here’s the real question: Do we really believe we have power? If so, what happens when we use our power for the greater good and not just our own good? Imagine a world awaiting your awakening. Hope is power.
You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.
1 John 4:4 NASB
“In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.”
Matthew 5:16 NLT
How much power is in a blue check, a platinum play button, a stadium chanting and wearing your name? If fame is the power that comes from being known by many, what happens when the All-Powerful and All-Knowing wears your name? Does it change how you move in the world? What happens when you’re given more than influence; what happens when you’re given ultimate power? What do you do with it?
Here’s the real question: Do we really believe we have power? If so, what happens when we use our power for the good of others? Imagine a world awaiting your awakening. Hope is power.
Evangelism is a big word. And it’s sometimes a confusing word because it didn’t start out as an English word. Those two factors have made it seem like a more complicated or even obscure topic than it really is. So, let’s make it really simple: Evangelism is sharing the message of Jesus with other people. Here’s where that gets tricky. More people today than ever before have heard about Jesus and said, “Not interested.” Which is heartbreaking! Because for those of us who are Christians, we know that the message of Jesus brings hope, gives life, and transforms hearts. So, what do we do? We make it personal. People are sick and tired of hearing about the love of Jesus. They need to see it. This is where we come in. We are called to be carriers of that message. Not just with what we say, but with how we live.
Almost everyone will be confronted with questions that cause them to question whether or not God is real. And those doubts can be scary because we don’t always know what to do with them or how to find answers to our questions. We are going to tackle the three questions that young people say are the biggest barriers to faith in God and the greatest contributors to doubt. Through these messages, we’re going to show students that God is not afraid of our questions. Because God is so much bigger than our questions.
DECEMBER: DISCIPLESHIP / GENEROSITY
Socrates taught Plato. Tati coached James Charles. Tolstoy influenced Gandhi. Usher mentored Bieber. Steve Jobs invested in Mark Zuckerberg. Dumbledore trained Harry Potter. People rarely transform into their highest potential without being a student of a great who paved the way. But don’t miss the point: Discipleship is not just epic, culture-halting collaboration between a great and a mentee. Discipleship is the marriage of deep relationship and rigorous discipline. Discipleship is the training ground, the battle, and the game-tape review. Discipleship is submitting your will, opening your head and heart, and doing the work of transforming to the image of Christ in order to help others transform. Discipleship requires a self-sacrificing, trustworthy coach and a submitted, self-disciplined student. So the question is this: when your coach steps out, will you be ready to step in?
“For God so loved the world that He gave …” Giving isn’t just something God does, generous is who God is. As followers of Jesus, we are invited into the process of being formed into the image of Christ for the sake of others. What we’ve been given isn’t just for us. It’s for the world. The only way we can pass on what we’ve been given is to become generous. What would it look like for us to be so generous that people want it to be true before they even believe it’s true?