More Than Just Method

Posted on: 09/26/12 3:01 AM | by Jonathan McKee

Yesterday Todd sent me this and I couldn’t help but share it with you. (I love his honest “skepticism.”)

Many of you might recognize his name… Todd Pearage is a full time youth pastor and father of three, who also moonlights writing movie reviews for us, and music reviews for Interlinc. Todd always is on the lookout for practical Christian resources for youth workers.

Hey Jonathan, I can’t help but give you some feedback about your latest DVD project, Real Conversations: How to Share Youth Faith Without Being Pushy.

Remember, this is from the guy who wasn’t that excited about it when you first told me that you were working on a video-based curriculum on evangelism. Honestly, the first thought I had was, “Another evangelism curriculum?” But, over the next few weeks as you shared more and more about your vision and direction of this DVD, I started to get really excited.

Too often curriculum like this appears to be written in think tanks by people who aren’t in the trenches. Those folks might deliver solid, well-written Bible lessons. Unfortunately, it often lacks realism. The stories are far-fetched and the “problems” are out-dated or not really problems at all.

And let’s be honest Continue reading “More Than Just Method”

Running… for You!

Posted on: 09/24/12 4:05 PM | by Jonathan McKee

I’ll keep this short and sweet. I need your help.

If you enjoy the free resources, articles and discussions that our ministry provides, here’s an opportunity for you to let us know. We only do this once a year– I run, my daughter Ashley runs, and my daughter Alyssa runs– all raising funds for this ministry so we can keep providing you with free resources, training and ideas.

My daughter Alyssa has already raised almost $500, and Ashley (pictured running to the right) is right on her tail. Both think they can raise more than me! So you decide… who do you think you should sponsor?   🙂  All the funds that all three of us raise through this event goes 100% to the free resources we provide on and websites.

Sponsoring us is easy: just click on the button to your left which will bring you to this page and choose GENERAL DONATION, or any of our three names from the dropdown menu. It all goes to the same place. All gifts are tax deductible and help us continue to provide you with free resources!

Thanks so much!!!

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Skipping “The Mindy Project”

Posted on: 09/24/12 3:01 AM | by Jonathan McKee

Fox’s new The Mindy Project began with good intentions, but that objective was quickly soiled with the typical inappropriate elements that contemporary television programming can’t seem to part with: crude humor, and poor role models who reek of imitatable negative behaviors.

We can only hope young people won’t be gleaning “wisdom” from Mindy this fall. Sadly, the show, premiering Tuesday, September 25th, is already creating a lot of buzz.

The show’s biggest momentum is probably from the popularity of Emmy Award nominated author/actress Mindy Kaling who both writes and stars in NBC’s The Office (Mindy plays Kelly). The Mindy Project is… well… Mindy’s new project where she plays a young woman named Mindy (yes, Mindy is playing a woman named Mindy) who, despite her successful career, is unlucky in her love efforts.

I can’t help but respect the producers’ intent, striving to provide a realistic lead character who young women can actually identify with. In an interview about the show, she confessed Continue reading “Skipping “The Mindy Project””

Permission to Go to the Homecoming Dance

Posted on: 09/19/12 3:01 AM | by Jonathan McKee

This morning Alyssa and I had an very honest and open conversation about the homecoming dance this coming weekend.

I basically asked her, “Why am I letting you go?”

I think you’ll find the conversation intriguing.

This isn’t the first time we’ve talked about the homecoming dance. Last year I blogged about my struggle with the decision, giving my readers a glimpse at what goes on at school dances, and the second I posted it (Dad, Can I Go to the Homecoming Dance?), the comments started pouring in.

“I’m disgusted that parents would let their kids go.”

“Christians have no places at dances.”

“Why are all these kids who have a heart for Christ wanting to hang out in a place that is so entirely sinful?”

As I look at the playlist for this year’s dance (my daughter caught a sneak peek of it on Facebook and sent me a copy—I just wrote about it in detail here in my latest post at, I began second-guessing my decision to let her go. So I decided to Continue reading “Permission to Go to the Homecoming Dance”

A Serendipitous Moment

Posted on: 09/17/12 3:01 AM | by Jonathan McKee

The day was taking a severe turn for the worse… how could this possibly turn out well? But 2 hours later I was experiencing manna from Heaven. (My Twitter followers know what I’m talking about—they heard me chiming in about it last night.)

I’m writing this post from a Chicago hotel room. That’s not good, because I’m supposed to be home right now.

It started at speaking trip in Detroit this weekend. I had a great time teaching my Connect workshop to a network of Detroit area youth workers on Saturday, then preached Sunday, then taught my Parenting the Texting Generation workshop Sunday afternoon. The people were great… but I started feeling under the weather as the weekend progressed… not much I could do, so I just slept plenty and kept at it. Needless to say, I was pretty excited about flying home Sunday night.

After my final workshop, I got to the airport, checked in, arrived at my gate, and when it was time to board… Continue reading “A Serendipitous Moment”

Do What You Say You’re Gonna Do

Posted on: 09/14/12 3:01 AM | by Jonathan McKee

Wow. I’m a little disappointed in humanity right now. Scratch that… let me be more specific. I’m a little frustrated with my fellow Christians right now.

A little while ago my friend Doug Fields and I Tweeted to our followers asking if there were any youth workers in the Horn Lake/Walls, MS area, just south of Memphis who would be interested in connecting with a kid that needed to be reached out to. Our friend Mark Matlock even connected us with a pastor who knew many people from the area, and he too started asking for help.

I’ll keep it short: Most youth pastors didn’t even return our phone calls, and of three guys that I started a dialogue with about it… they didn’t even return our emails. Several of these guys even told me Continue reading “Do What You Say You’re Gonna Do”

The Top of the Charts… are Clean?

Posted on: 09/12/12 3:01 AM | by Jonathan McKee

Is there any good music worth downloading?

Speaking personally, I love music. My daughters and I share an iTunes account, and when one of us downloads a song, the other two automatically receives the download. Rarely will a week pass without one of us downloading something, and then you’ll hear the other two of us commenting…

 “Oh cool, I didn’t know The Script had a new song!”

“Have you heard this one from The Killers.”

“Sweet one from Gungor.” (Isn’t Gungor awesome? Can’t get enough of them!)

But at times, I’m a little disappointed with today’s music that makes it to the top of the charts. Sure, there was raunchy music and music videos when I was in high school, but not as commonplace, and not so easily accessible for curious young eyes and ears. (When I was a teenager I didn’t have a screen that allowed me an abundance of risqué videos just a click away.)

I teach at least two workshops a month where I provide a glimpse at pop-youth culture. So I have a pretty good taste of what’s usually in the top 10. And let’s just say, I don’t have to go hunting for raunchy lyrics and videos. Like this past weekend, where I simply showed them the #1 song on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, a song about oral sex.

But I encouraged parents, “Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater.” The charts aren’t all bad. As I write this, the charts are actually particularly clean Continue reading “The Top of the Charts… are Clean?”

Caring and Careless

Posted on: 09/10/12 3:01 AM | by Jonathan McKee

“What’s the big deal?” “It’s no biggie!” “Who Cares!”

Sound like something out of your teenager’s mouth? Then you’re not alone. If I had to describe today’s generation of young people in one sentence, I’d probably say something like this: “They care…but they don’t care.”

I gave my Twitter followers a morsel of this while I was working on my youth culture presentation for my parent workshop yesterday. I described today’s teenagers as caring, but careless. They are sensitive to causes, but desensitized to the lure of risky behaviors in their lives.

I Care
Today’s young people seem to want to make an impact more than any generation prior. I don’t mean any disrespect to past generations; it’s just that young people today are Continue reading “Caring and Careless”

Coming to Both Coasts

Posted on: 09/6/12 3:01 AM | by Jonathan McKee

I’ve got some great opportunities for many of you on either U.S. coast, and a few places in between:

North Carolina
First, this weekend, September 8 and 9, I’ll be teaching my CONNECT workshop Saturday, preaching, and teaching my PARENTING THE TEXING GENERATION workshop Sunday near Raleigh, North Carolina. Both of these workshops are FREE. Find out more information on this web page. If you’re in the area… don’t miss out.

The next weekend, September 15 and 16, I do the same thing. I’ll be teaching my CONNECT workshop Saturday, preaching, and teaching my PARENTING THE TEXING GENERATION workshop Sunday near Detroit. For more information about times, cost and location, click here.

Other Cities
I’m also coming to Continue reading “Coming to Both Coasts”