04 May 2010
High School Chapel on April 28
Wow! God is good all the time! My life has been super busy these days with planning for Mark's big #1 birthday party, teaching and training Julia, keeping a clean, and inviting home, cooking, visiting my grandfather in the nursing home, and really trying hard to be a good wife to John.
Something that God has blessed me with these past few months is speaking at Timothy Christian School's chapels. I can now say I've spoken to the elementary kids, middle school, and just recently the high school!
There are 240 high school students and my, what a wonderful bunch of teens they are! I never taught the seniors, but the freshman, sophomores, and juniors are all mixed with students I taught 3rd grade to 7 years ago! My, time really flies! The class of 2011 will be my first 3rd grade class to graduate high school. And I definitely plan on attending that graduation (I spoke at their 8th grade graduation, which was a wonderful blessing!)
On April 28th, I arrived at 10:15 to meet with Laura McKay, the principal, and dear friend, and talk about this current year, the senior missions trip to Dominican Republic, and to set up my video in the auditorium. Thanks to Johnny DiMare, I was able to videotape some church members and interview them on my topic. We made a silly video, which went over very well. It was a fun way to introduce my topic and break the ice. I have found that laughter is always the best medicine and a great bridge builder.
So I began with telling some third grade memories, I put a few kids on the spot (who were such great sports and didn't mind at all, sweethearts!) and basically told the group how much I love them and missed them. And I commented on how big and beautiful they were all getting...more laughter
Then I had the seniors stand and share their experiences in Dominican Republic, and I had the 10 students who are headed on a missions trip to Belize share their goals and the purpose of their trip and we prayed for them.
With that I began "my story" I shared a brief part of my testimony, my family life, my high school years and how John and I met. Then I began talking about how dating a non-Christian can really lead you off of your path. Mid story (I called it the McInerney Saga, for more laugh appeal) I stopped and shared the video Johnny and I created.
I showed them the video which was about 2 and 1/2 minutes and what it was, was we interviewed about 10 people and asked them what they do to prepare before a big race. I wore a sombrero and talked into a closed umbrella as if it were a microphone and it was rather hysterical. All of their answers were silly. After the video we opened up God's word to 1 Corinthians 9: 24-27 and talked about how in the Christian life we are running a race for our heavenly prize. I read the passage in the NKJ version and the Living Bible version.
Then I talked about the importance of running with a buddy (accountability partners) I shared how people in marathons run with those who believe what they believe and people who encourage and support them. We talked about how when you are getting prepared for a big race you have to get fit and start exercising and eating right, same in the Christian life, we filter out the junk (secular music that is not edifying, raunchy or inappropriate tv/movies,) and how we train for godliness.
Then I went back to my story and shared how John came to Christ after 9/11. How he stopped going to clubs, stopped hanging out with his buddies that were living negative lifestyles, how he stopped listening to rap/hip hop music, how his language changed, his clothes changed, his life changed. Yes, it was drastic, but when you come face to face with Christ your life does change drastically.
Well, after all was said and done I ended with a passage in Hebrews 12:1, 2 which says, "1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Pastor Steve once said, "Sin always takes us further than we want to go, keeps us longer than we want to stay, and costs us more than we can pay." Isn't that a great quote? I love that one, so I had to share it with those wonderful teens.
Then, I had everyone bow their head and close their eyes, and I said to them "If anyone here has a family secret they are living with, or a sin issue they are dealing with, and you want prayer, I may not know your name, but I never forget a face." And out of those 240 students, I would say about 20-25 students, mostly girls, raised their hands for prayer! Just last night, one of those students, facebooked me privately to be her accountability partner! Woohoo!
God is good all the time!
Thank you God for such a great time with those teens, and I pray for those students who were brave enough to ask for help, and ask for prayer. Only you know their situations Lord. Please give them the courage to find an adult whom they can trust to share their problems with and help them. The teenage years can be very tough and tricky. Please bless those students who are really seeking to honor you with their life.