Update

I wanted to let you all know that as a staff, we are streamlining our communication to you. What this means for you is that you will get less individual ministry emails. Hooray! I am emailing you to let you know this so that you don’t think something bad has happened to me! Starting next week, you will not be hearing directly from me. Instead, Rev. Ling will send out a weekly pastoral communication that will include the individual ministry updates.

I will continue to update our youth ministry website as often as I get a chance to between meetings and school, but everything you need to know about DCBC youth ministry’s upcoming online meetings will be on this website.

As I thought about how to host youth group online when I couldn’t sleep last night, I realize that if we post our link openly, we may not be doing our best at protecting your children because any person can find our website and join our call. So, I will be putting in a password for posts with links for online meetings. If there is any password coded things, check your emails for the password.

If your child wants to “bring” a friend to our online meetings, please feel free to share with them the link to our call (not the password). 

We are praying for you during this time. Remember that God is still sovereign and in control so we can rejoice because He is still the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow! Please let me know if there is anything specific you need prayer for!

Please also note that we included a whole section on Covid-19 under “For the Parents” to help you navigate how to use this time to disciple your child: http://dcbcsite.org/youth/parents/covid-19/

– A.

How to talk to your kids about Covid-19?

Parents, 
We are committed to giving you resources to know how to disciple your children – especially during this pandemic. I have recently gotten into contact with the founder of Visionary Family Ministries and he was gracious in sending me this resource so that I could pass it along to you all.
Please read it and talk about it with your kids. There is even a video that you could watch as a family.

Many are making light of this and it would make sense from an individualistic perspective i.e. I’m not at risk of death, so it’s not a big deal. HOWEVER, the discipleship question that comes with that is: how do we lay down our freedom for the sake of loving the other? This virus is an opportunity to reveal our own sinfulness and our own selfishness i.e. the everybody for themselves mentality. So parents, please prayerfully talk with your kids about this. See below for the resource.

How to Talk with YourKids about the Coronavirus
Dear Friends, 
All of our lives are being impacted by the virus. Don’t miss this opportunity to talk with your children. Here are seven things your kids and grandkids need to know. (Don’t miss the special video at the bottom of this email)
1. God is in control.
None of this is a surprise to God. This did not catch Him off guard in any way. In fact, He has allowed this virus to exist. God is not like us. He is never worried, never fearful, and never out of control. He is in charge of the history of the entire Universe, from beginning to end. 
Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and in the earth is yours. Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. – 1 Chronicles 29:11
2. God never wants His children to be afraid.
If we are children of the King, and the King is in full control, there is no need for fear. After all, what is the worst that can happen? We could die. What happens then? Paradise and Heaven await! Of course, we do not seek death, but Christians should never fear it. This world is not our home. Our bodies are going to break down, get sick, and die one way or another.
For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. – 2 Timothy 1:7
For me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. – Philippians 1:21
3. God instructs his children to be wise.
In Proverbs 22:3 God tells us, “The prudent sees danger and hides himself, but the simple go on and suffer for it.” This is not an instruction to panic but to be wise. It is wise to wash our hands. It is wise to stay home if we are sick so that we do not put ourselves or others at risk. 
4. God calls us to love our neighbors.
This is a special opportunity for followers of Jesus to demonstrate His love, humility, and compassion. Do you have elderly members of your family, church, or neighborhood? Ask how you can serve them. Are your friends or family members fearful? Encourage them to put their faith in God. For some, there will be significant financial impact during these weeks and months. If you are in a more stable financial position you can help by continuing to shop. Hopefully, you already tip generously, now is the time to be super generous. Your family can also help by contributing to trusted Christian charities who are on the front lines helping those in need.
5. God tells us to submit to the authorities
It is hard to see schools, businesses, sports teams, special events and other things that we care about being suspended or cancelled. These are difficult decisions for our government and institutional leaders. We may not like or support those decisions, but we should submit to them with a spirit that trusts that God is accomplishing His purposes. There are times when Christians should reject laws and instructions from government leaders, but only when those laws forbid us from obeying the Bible.
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.Therefore, whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. – Romans 13:1-2
6. When we are anxious, God wants us to pray
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6
In every situation when we are anxious, we should pray. How should we pray in light of this virus? First, give thanks. Thank God for His power and goodness. Thank Him for your life and His blessings. Second, present your requests to Him. Pray for this virus to subside, worldwide. Pray for health and protection for your family and those in your community. Pray for God to bless and give wisdom to all our government leaders. Pray against any spirit of hatred and division. Pray for people who are lost and far from God to call out to Him and be saved. If we do these things, God promises that He will give us His peace and guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
7. Share the Good News of Jesus
Those who don’t know Jesus may be especially afraid right now. They may also have a lot of questions, confusion, and even anger. When we think face sickness of any kind, our thoughts should turn to Jesus and the Gospel. Why is there sickness in the world? Because of sin. There was no sickness or death in the world until Adam and Eve sinned (Romans 5:12). Their sin (and ours) brings physical death and spiritual death in hell. It was into this world of sin that Jesus came, taking our sin, paying the price of death for us on the cross, and then conquering sin and death through his resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:20-28).
Jesus did not die and rise again to give us perfect health and life forever on this Earth. He has something far greater planned. These bodies are all going to die. This entire world will be wiped away. For those who have their names written in the Book of Life, they will receive new perfect bodies that will never die, and they will live forever, with God, on a brand new physical Earth forever (Revelation 21:1-8).
Is your name written in the Book of Life? Are the names of your friends and family members written in the book? Share this Gospel message with them. Invite them to repent of their sins and put their faith in Jesus to save them. 
Dr. Rob & Amy RienowFounders, Visionary Family Ministries Will God Keep Me Safe?Watch this video as a family. These Scriptures will help you and your children find rest and peace in the power of God.  ‌  ‌  ‌  ‌  ‌

Sex Robots: why it matters

Oct. 5, 2018 Update: 

Parents, the Sex Robot Brothel in Houston may have been revoked… but here is an article that hits a lot closer to home. There is a shop here in Dallas that rents (and sells) life like female dolls for the purpose of sex. So please be in conversation with your students about purity, marriage, and sex the way God talks about it in Scripture. (See Article below titled “The FAQs: Christians and the Moral Threat of Sex Robots”)
 
Click here for the news article on Sex Robots

Oct. 4, 2018 Original Post:

Parents,

I am sure you have heard on the news about a Canadian company wanting to start a Sex Robot Brothel in Houston, TX. I am also sure that you heard this morning, it got shut down unanimously.

This is an important topic to talk to your children about as it touches upon sexual purity, the purpose of sex, and the marriage relationship. We, in youth ministry, will inevitably talk about it as it is a current issue in society. BUT, we cannot replace you in talking about this important issue so we urge you, parents, to ask your kids what they think, to have this tough conversation, and to continue to have this tough conversation with them. Chances are they are hearing about this in school. They hear a lot more in school than you may think. To give you a hint: some of them have heard about the entirety of the Kavanaugh case from classmates and are developing their own opinions from their friends’ perspectives of these issues. NOTE: they are not developing their opinions by reading or listening to the trial. It is simply by their friends talking about it. 

Parents, our kids need parents who are hands on in their faith – not just where they go to school/college, grades, etc. Our kids need us to stay informed about current issues. They need us to think through these issues biblically. They need us to guide them through these issues using God’s Word – the only absolute truth there is – in a world of relative truth.

Here is an article I have found helpful in understanding the issues:

The FAQS: Christians and the Moral Threat of Sex Robots

Summer 2018

It has been a packed summer!

We started with Graduation Banquet where we saw 14 seniors graduate from High School. It was a bittersweet moment for us. This class will forever hold a special place in my (Angel’s) heart. God used this banquet to encourage and spur onto faith those in our community. We love these young men and women so much. We pray that they will experience Jesus in every opportunity.

Class of 2018

Then we were whisked off to DCCYC. It was HOT, but God is always gentle. The kids learned spiritual lessons through real life situations. I (Angel) relearned lessons as God continued to call me to surrender as well. Below is just a small group of our students with our leaders. We are so proud of these young men and women who came out to serve.

Off for a week where we cleaned out our entire youth floor as we prepared for renovations. Then it was off to OurCalling for a week of serving.

DCBC @ OurCalling

DCBC @ OurCalling

We are so proud of these kids. They did so much manual labor and they never once complained. Instead, they laughed so much and had so much fun while serving. We got to do the hard work of manual labor while the long-term missionaries (the staff) did the work of ministry. It was definitely a humbling experience for all of us. We learned so much. God definitely used this opportunity correct our broken knowledge of God and challenged our preconceived notions of homelessness. Talk to these kids if you want to find out how specifically we were corrected/challenged. PTL for OurCalling. PTL for these kids.

Next up: youth ministry evaluations, leaders training, student leaders training, and all the planning for September 14th kick off!

How do I talk to my kids about S-E-X?!

Hi Parents,

We have been talking about dating, marriage, and sex in our parents group this semester. We even got a chance to get really practical with some case studies and how we would handle them as parents. We are sorry if you haven’t had a chance to come out and attend our parents groups this year. We hope to resume next year. In the mean time, we found some good books that could be helpful for you as you disciple your child in these matters:

  1. Good Pictures Bad Pictures: porn-proofing today’s young kids
  2. The Talk: 7 lessons to introduce your child to biblical sexuality
  3. Changes: 7 biblical lessons to make sense of puberty
  4. Relationships: 11 lessons to give kids a greater understanding of biblical sexuality

These are books that are guided so it gives parents exactly what to say, the scripture behind it, the questions to ask and the prayer to pray at the end. It even gives you a follow up plan at the end of the lesson. If you read this book cover to cover including introduction, it would be helpful in your discussion and follow-up with your child.

New Drug

Parents & SGLs,

I heard about this new way of smoking yesterday morning and I wanted to send you an article about it so that you are informed. It was at Shepton and now, it’s moved to Plano West. I was informed today that kids are calling Juuling “vaping” as well. So they are using the terms interchangeably.
Please be advised that Juuling is more dangerous than vaping. The amount of nicotine in “Juuling” is an entire carton’s worth in one cartridge, making it MORE addictive than cigarettes. Please take a look at this article: https://offspring.lifehacker.com/what-parents-need-to-know-about-juuling-1823376027

Micah 6:8 Project – Focus on Homelessness

Hello YM blog readers,

This whole school year, we have been studying the book of James. One BIG take away from our study of James this year has been: a heart transformed by the Gospel leads to a transformed life. So, as a youth group, we kicked off the Micah 6:8 Project with this year’s focus on homelessness. We educated our youth group. Thanks to Patricia Chen who came to speak to us and to share her wealth of knowledge and love of God’s people to God’s people. We educated our church thanks to Pastor Wayne Walker of OurCalling. This was followed by a 3-week fundraising where all the proceeds go to OurCalling.

We are so thankful. The Lord is so good in all that He does and in all that He calls us to do! We are also so proud of these teenagers! While this was not an easy project to plan for the church, we are so thankful for what God did:

  1. $2,254.77 were raised!
  2. ~200 blessings bags were given to the congregation
  3. We’ve had countless conversations about homelessness and those who are without a home.
  4. Some of our seniors and SGLs have gone to serve at OurCalling!
  5. Our 7th grade girls are organizing themselves to serve at a homeless shelter next school year.
  6. A few women from our church are trying to get trained by OurCalling to serve at OurCalling.
  7. A woman is trying to gather clean plastic bags (and without holes) to crochet into a BIG duffle bag for OurCalling to give away to their itinerant clients so that they can carry all their stuff in one bag.
  8. A family in our congregation saw a man on the street and saw the car in front of them pass out a blessings bag from our church to him. They were able to have a good conversation with their children about homelessness and our role as believers.
  9. The youth were mobilized. They saw the impact they could have on the church. They learned a huge lesson on what it looks like to serve – people may not always be kind, but we are always called to be faithful. They saw what it looked like to simply be faithful to what God has called us to do. They saw God take our faithfulness and multiply it into something HUGE. They also experienced that they are capable of making HUGE impact!

Patricia Chen educating the youth on homelessness (2/9/2018)

Students packing blessings bags (2/9/2018)

Students packing blessings bags (2/9/2018)

Students packing blessings bags (2/9/2018)

Students packing blessings bags (2/9/2018)

Students volunteering to help us finish packing the blessings bags on a Saturday with the small group leader (SGL) (2/17/2018)

200 blessings bags packed

Pastor Wayne Walker speaking to our church on Sunday (2/18/2018)

Students preparing on Sunday to serve HK style milk tea and to speak to the congregation about the blessings bags.

Students preparing on Sunday to serve HK style milk tea and to speak to the congregation about the blessings bags.

Senior girls heading to OurCalling for their Search and Rescue on an early Saturday morning.

Seniors and SGLs serving at OurCalling on an early Saturday morning

Seniors and SGLs serving at OurCalling on an early Saturday morning.

This is what we have been doing for the past few months! Thank you for praying for us.