YM Quotes:

YM Quotes:

Youth ministry is always a challenge. Youth ministry is consistently changing. Youth ministry is regularly surprising. Youth ministry is fresh all the time. (Mark Oestreicher)

Although students need guidance from good leaders, we often take on too much of the responsibility for their knowledge about God. We want them to blindly adopt our opinions rather than work out their own understanding. Instead we must help young people learn how to think for themselves with God’s perspective as their foundation and the Word of God as their rule. (Sean Dunn)

(You'll find more YM Quotes below the posts)

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Positions necessary to play a soccer match (short sport-related Bible study) - MF

3. The Middlefield Player

Where does usually the action in most games happen?
Is it possible to play with a defence and an offence only?
Why do you need Middlefield players?
Who is the best Middlefield player you know and why?

The hardest battle on the soccer field happens usually in the Middlefield. It is
important to have strong Middlefield players who know how to keep the ball, have oversight of the game and then most importantly “pass the ball forward”. Otherwise you will struggle to get the ball from the defence to the strikers.
In your daily walk with Jesus you need to “pass on” the ball – tell/ teach others of what you have learned and experienced with God. It is important to be able and eager to explain to others why you believe in Jesus. Through that you will grow in your relationship with Jesus.

You have often heard me teach. Now I want you to tell these same things to
followers who can be trusted to tell others. 2 Timothy 2:2 (CEV)

Dear God, give me the strength and courage to pass on what I know about you. Please help me to tell my friends, family and others about you. Amen.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Positions necessary to play a soccer match (short sport-related Bible study) - D

2. The Defender

What is the responsibility of the defender/ the defence?
Is it important to have a strong defence?
Name at least 3 of the best defenders you know?
Is there something in your life that is so important so you want to defend it?

Good defenders have oversight of the opponent (especially the strikers) and are able to cut their attack down before they can have a shot at the goal.
It is not only good and important to have a strong defence on the soccer-field, but as well to be defended (rescued) by God - he will help you in your daily life. And even more than that, if you are in God’s team you should be willing to defend your faith “in love” as well. This might be difficult for you at times.
Here are two examples: Paul (Jesus friend) wrote in a letter to people in Philippi, saying that even though he is in prison he will keep on defending God’s word – no matter what might happen to him.  
Also remember that God promises to you that he will never leave or forsake you! (Genesis 28:15 & Joshua 1:5)

You have a special place in my heart. So it is only natural for me to feel the way I do. All of you have helped in the work that God has given me, as I defend the good news and tell about it here in jail. Philippians 1:7 (CEV)

Dear God, thank you that you take care of me and help me in hard times. Please give me wisdom and strength to defend my faith in you (in a right way) if others make fun of what I believe in. Amen.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Positions necessary to play a soccer match (short sport-related Bible study) - GK

1. The Goalkeeper

What is the role of the Goalkeeper?
Why is the Goalkeeper important?
What would happen if your team play’s without a Goalie?
Name some of the best Goalkeepers you know?

A good Goalkeeper is not scared of the opponent striker, goes at the ball and has strong hands. Like a Goalie tries to prevent the other team to score goals, in the same way you should abstain and prevent yourself from bad influences that you might experience in your life. There are so many opportunities to do all sorts of stupid things. They even seem “ok” in the beginning (like Alcohol, Drugs, lying…), but draw us often eventually away from God.
Sometimes saying “no” is a very difficult thing and you might consider help from a trusted friend (like a teacher, counsellor, youth-worker or family member).

Flee from the evil desires of your youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and Peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.
2 Timothy 2:22 (NIV)

Dear God, there are so many different things (temptations) around me which
seem good and it is hard not to give in to them. Help me and give me strength so that I can keep those challenges out of my life. Amen.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

This ain't a bucket list (Things YW should regularly focus on)

Since "The Bucket List" - Movie was released in 2007 people started to be inspired. Many wrote different lists with the things they should do in life at least once before they die. Now, just the other day a friend of mine posted a link on FB with the Headline: "5 things every Pilot should have on their bucket list".

I was wondering "What kind of Bucket list should a youth worker have?" As I startet writing down some thoughts I quickly realised one thing...the things I wrote down are so important to the life of a youth worker that it should not be a "once in a lifetime" thing.

So I decided NOT to write a bucket list but to jot down some thoughts on "Things youth workers should regularly focus on".

Here are my top ten:
Go on a SPECIAL holiday (at least 5 days) with your spouce every 3-5 years. (Besides your regular holidays.)

Go on a SPECIAL holiday (at least 5 days) with your family every 3-5 years. (Besides your regular holidays.)

Go on a SPECIAL weekend with your volunteer youth leaders every 2 years. (For relationship purposes only.)

Have at least 10 significant one-on-one talks per year with different teenagers from your ministry.

Connect as regularly as possible (over social media, phone, internet and over a cup of coffee) with 5-10 teenagers which are not related to any your ministry.

Know at least 10 other youth ministry leaders/workers close to your homebase (near or in your town).

Find your own way (and spot) to REGULARLY "hang out" with God. (Read, sing, pray, study, write peoms, paint pictures, record, compose...)

Find one day in your week to slow down, and make sure not to compromise on that.

Spend once a month proper time with a good friend. (NOT via Skype, FB, Twitter or any of the other social media platforms.)

Check on your parents once a month (they still got lot's of wisdom to share with you).

...this is not an exclusive list you yre more then welcome to add or change some of the points. I have not yet managed to fulfill all of the points on a regular base, but it's good to have them written down and contemplate on what I should do next...

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Communication and Leadership

(compiled by Christoph Marte)

1.        Introduction
Communication is the art of expressing in godly ways what is in my heart and of hearing completely and understanding what another thinks and feels (Tripp 1995, p.119)
Communication is a part of our life. We communicate constantly and uninterruptedly with our fellow humans, even when we are not speaking. Through our posture, our facial expression, our imitative behavior and gestures (Nagy 2005, p.1). All too often there is a difference between what we say and what we think we have said, and between how we feel we have dealt with people and how they think they have been treated. This gap between our intention and our action or interpretation is often referred to as a breakdown in communication (cf Green 2005, p.34). Leaders should take care, that they are properly understood.

2.        Every message has four sides (model from Schulz von Thun):

·         the fact aspect - the information I want to convey. Every message contains some kind of information, of a fact from the sender’ point of view. This factual information is most visible.
·         the self-disclosure aspect (what I say about myself). In addition to factual information a message also contains information about the sender. The sender usually gives hints about what is going on inside of him. (How the sender feels at heart, how he/she feels itself)
·         the relationship aspect - how I relate to you. Every message also says something about the relationship between sender and receiver. What they feel for each other, how they are connected with each other. (This aspect of the message is often expressed through the tone and voice, gestures, and facial expressions – also known as nonverbal signals.
·         The appeal aspect - what I want to effect on the part of the receiver. A message usually is linked with a wish to influence the other person in some manner. So a message always has a reason or an intention. This aspect involves wishes, appeals, advices, directions for action, effects etc.
(cf Nagy 2005, p.2f.)


For example, if you tell your friend “It is 5 o’clock”, maybe you just want to state this fact (fact aspect), but maybe saying this, you want say that you are in a hurry revealing your sentiment (Self-disclosure aspect). Another possibility is that you want to say: “Now I prefer doing something else instead of spending more time with you”, stating your relation to your conversation partner (relationship aspect) Or maybe saying this short sentence you want to ask your conversation partner to hurry up (appeal aspect)?
Anything we say, we stress on one or the other aspect of the message. Misunderstandings occur, when we send a message meaning one thing, but the “receiver” hears it differently, as if he/she would hear it with a different “ear”. Every message includes this four aspects and the receiver also is able to hear messages with this four aspects but its on itself which one he/she prefers.
(Green 2005, p.35)

             To DO!

Two friends are sitting in a car that is stopped at the robot. The
One guy is at the wheel. When the light turns green, the other one says to
him: “Hey friend, look ahead the robot is green.”

The reaction of the driver depends what he understood.

What are fact aspects out of this conversation?
What are self-disclosure aspects out of this conversation?
What are relationship aspects out of this conversation?
What are appeal aspects out of this conversation?

Surely we can’t always hear with all our ears, but we can try to sharpen our awareness of the fact that a message can have several sides, or aspects, and we can, especially when misunderstandings occur, try to observe ourselves and see which ear we have used to receive the message, and try to see it from another point of view.
(Nagy 2005, p.4)

3.        Improve your communication

If we want to communicate effectively with others, it is important to be aware that every person has different perspectives. Everyone interprets the world against his own background of experiences (world-view). We often have the impression that we understand someone but after a while we recognize that we were completely mistaken. Active listening means that you try to understand the other person before making a contribution of your own.

          To DO!

Writ a large “M” on a piece of newsprint. Then get 4 participants to stand around the newsprint, one along each edge and ask them to call out what they see.
(Camilla Symes 2005: 8)
One will say “m” one will see a “3”, one will see “E” and one will see “w”.


Which one is it? Encourage them to shout it out. Who is right! Discuss this issue and also brainstorm as group:
What are the challenges of this issue?

          Learn effect:

·         we learn that we are often talk about the same things but see it with a different perspective.
·         We have to ask behind if we all talk about the same thing!
·         We should accept other points of views!


It is important to take care that everyone understand each other. Active listening is a powerful method to improve the communication.

4.        Active listening

Means that you give your conversation partner signals that you are following. Focus your attention on the subject – stop all non-relevant activities. To prepare the right environment it is important to: 

4.1.     Pay attention
Give the speaker your undivided attention and acknowledge the message. Recognize that what is not said also speaks loudly.
·      Look at the speaker directly.
·      Put aside distracting thoughts. Don’t mentally prepare a rebuttal!
·      Avoid being distracted by environmental factors.
·      “Listen” to the speaker’s body language.
·      Refrain from side conversations when listening in a group setting.

4.2.     Show that you are listening
Use your own body language and gestures to convey your attention.
·      Nod occasionally.
·      Smile and use other facial expressions.
·      Note your posture and make sure it is open and inviting.
·      Encourage the speaker to continue with small verbal comments like yes, and uh huh.

4.3.       Provide feedback
Our personal filters, assumptions, judgments, and beliefs can distort what we hear. As a listener, your role is to understand what is being said. This may require you to reflect what is being said and ask questions.

·      Reflect what has been said by paraphrasing. “What I’m hearing is…” and “Sounds like you are saying…” are great ways to reflect back.
·      Ask questions to clarify certain points. “What do you mean when you say…” “Is this what you mean?”
·      Summarize the speaker’s comments periodically.

u    Paraphrasing - mirroring the statement in your own words (summary in own words). It is a way to first make sure that you have understood the other person correctly. The paraphrase should conclude with a questioning tone of voice, so that the other person in turn has a chance to confirm or reject your statement.

Person A: “I think it’s completely senseless for us to be holding this team meeting every week! It’s the same thing every time, anyway.”
Person B: “So you don’t think it’s a good idea for us to have weekly team meetings because nothing new results from them?”
Person A: “Yes, exactly! Anyway, it’s always the same people talking, and whenever you want to say something, you get interrupted!”
Person B: “You have something to say, but you feel you’re not getting a chance to say it…“
Person A: “That’s it.”
Person B: “Well, I think we could bring that up sometime, and it doesn’t
have to mean that we should dispense with the team meetings right off the bat. I think they’re important.”

Thus Person A gets down to the real problem, which was not clear at first. Once everything has come out, Person B also explains his or her point of view. Often the real problem is hidden. With paraphrasing it is more possible to ask behind. It enables the listener to really understand his/her opposite.

u    Verbalizing - mirroring the underlying feelings – you try out to detect the feeling that underlie certain statements . Questions much better than absolutes because they allow the other person always to sense whether the feeling is accurate or not.
Person A: “Hey, why don’t you say something for a change! I always have to make all the decisions! It’s so hard to work with you!”
Person B: “You’re feeling that too much is expected of you right now?”
Person A: “Yes, I’m not God, after all, and you’re just not doing your part!”
Person B: “And you’re not only feeling overtaxed, you’re also a little cross with me and you’d like me to take a little of the work load off you.”
Person A: “Right. Yes, somehow I am cross that you’re not doing more.”
Person B. “I’d like to tell you how I feel: I often feel a little passed over, because you always snatch everything so quickly and do it, and I thought you just liked it that way, so I stayed out of it and did my stuff, just whatever was left to do …”
Person A: “Oh, so you think I want to do all these things alone, but you’ve been feeling uncomfortable about it too?”
Person B: “Yes.”
Person A: “And you’d like things to be different too?”
Person B: “Yes.”
Person A: “Well, then we’ll have to think about how we can do things in the future…“

Person B does not immediately counter the attack, but attempts to understand the feeling behind Person A’s words, in order to react on that level and not on the level of argument or discussion. This also helps Person B
to better express his or her feelings.

(cf.Nagy n.d., p.6ff.)

4.4.       Defer judgment.  
          Interrupting is a waste of time. It frustrates the speaker and limits full
          understanding of the message.
          Allow the speaker to finish.
          Don’t interrupt with counter-arguments.

4.5.       Respond Appropriately
Active listening is a model for respect and understanding. You are gaining information and perspective. You add nothing by attacking the speaker or otherwise putting him or her down.
           Be candid, open, and honest in your response.
           Assert your opinions respectfully.
           Treat the other person as you would want to be treated.

          To Do (Groups with minimum 3 People)

A: talk with B about something that happened during the last month.
B: try to use the learned method.
Active listening:
·         Do not interrupt Person A!
·         Give signals that you are still listening to her/him?
·         From time to time summarize what you have talked about in your own words?
·         Maybe it is necessary to verbalize the emotions? Try to understand how the opposite feels?
Observer(s): The rest of the group observes the conversation. Make notes. How does active listening influence the conversation? What improve the conversation? What impairs the conversation?
After 10 minutes discuss the different perspectives? Start with Person A. He/She should explain how she felt? Than Person B? At the end the Observer(s) discuss their notes with the group.

! Change the roles that as everybody can try to use active listening !

Jesus often communicated with other People. He always took his time and tried to understand the other Person. Jesus always gave his opposite the chance to understand his thoughts. So lets learn from Jesus. During a conversation it is important that we take our time.

We as disciples have the chance to make things different. We always have two Possibilities encourage people or discourage people. If you are working together with other People you have to give them an open space. Leaders should prepare an environment that enables the team to work.


Camilla, S. 2005. Mentoring Community Based Organisations. The Barnabas Trust and Mentoring Resource Network.
Green, S. 2005. Peer Education Approach in Cultural Diversity Projects. Available at:

Nagy, C., 2005. Part I: Every Message Has Four Sides. Article written for JCCenters.org, 1 - 18.

Nagy, C. Part IIII: Person-Centered Communication—Listening and Understanding. Available at:

Tripp, T. 1995. Communication is the art of expressing in godly ways what is in my heart and of
hearing completely and understanding what another thinks and feels. In Shepherding a Child's
Heart.  Shepert Press, p. 119. Available at: