First Priority

Be Creation Conscious
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Let everything that God created remind you of Him through-out the day...the sun, wind, stars, flowers, insects, ocean...

Hey, consider getting yourself a copy of...
"Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing The Will Of God" (Youth Edition) It's a life changing bible study. Just dive in and see all the cool things God teaches you.

Choose 10 of your favorite names for God listed in the Bible.
Do a word study on each one. Use a dictionary and a thesaurus to get a complete definition. Use a concordance to see how that name is used. Now record everything you learn and reflect on what it means to you! Share your discoveries with your family or a friend.

Possible names (ways God is referred to):
Holy, Righteous, Light, Hiding Place, Rock, Refuge, Shield, Lover of My Soul, Faithful, Healer, Comforter, Confidence, Sustainer, Potter, Judge, Shepherd, Sovereign Lord, Truth, Strength, Architect/Builder, Maker, Banner, Compassionate.

Keep a blessings journal!

Every night before you go to bed, record five ways God has blessed you. That means you'll have to pay attention during the day! Now thank Him for each one!

Soak up God's wisdom from the Book of Proverbs.
Each day read the chapter that corresponds to the date, like on the 18th read chapter 18! By the end of the summer you'll be one smart chick!

Check out the devo's on these websites:
Youth Walk
Brio Magazine (Soul Food)
Guideposts for Teens




Faith with Feet
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Do you have the nerve to serve others?
You can be a divine-minded diva by impacting your
community and letting the light of Jesus shine through you! Use your extra time to put some Christ-like love in action!

Take your pick!
· Serve food at the homeless shelter or Rescue Mission
· Help with mail-outs at the crisis pregnancey center!
· Baby-sit for a busy mom...for free!
· Do yard work for an elderly person
· Pick up trash in the parks
· Be a VBS helper at your church
· Take a friend and go pass out flowers at a nursing home
· Make dinner for your family --plan the menu, decorate
   the table, serve the meal
· Care for animals at the Humane Society
· Volunteer to do office work such as filing for a local    charity
· Write encouragement cards to the students in your youth    group
· Do your brother or sister's chores





The Greatest (almost) Fairy Tale Ever Told
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By Emily Cummins

You've heard the story of Cinderella, right? A handsome prince sweeps Cinderella off her feet and changes her life forever. Sounds like your typical fairy tale. The gorgeous princess, beautiful ball gowns, super hot prince, and then the famous happily ever after. You can't help but wonder, "Can a fairy tale really happen in the 21st century, or am I just another average dreamer?" A fairy tales' technical definition is a ficticious and fanciful story. Well, I would hate to tell Mr. Webster, but he messed up on that definition! There is a TRUE story that sound just like a fairy tale in the 21st century that has been around since before you were even born! There actually is a prince charming and a royal princess. Just as the prince found value in Cinderella, Jesus, the Prince of Peace, finds tremendous value in you! He came down from Heaven to sweep you off your feet and change your life forever. Long before you were even born He thought of you and endured the death penalty to provide forgiveness for everything you (and I) have ever done wrong. He did it just for you. His love didn't stop at death - He rose back to life three days later. He did this so that He could have a relationship with you - His princess!

If I were to give you a gift you would accept it, right? Jesus gave His life and rose again for you as a gift. The prince gave Cinderella his love as well as his kingdom. Jesus wants to give you His eternal love and the right to be with Him forever in the kingdom of Heaven. Cinderella's prince was madly in love with her. After she left the ball, he took her glass slipper and searched the entire kingdom just to find her. Jesus took the very form of a man and came to earth to find you. He endured death to be with you. He wants to have a relationship with you. You are His princess and He thinks you are beautiful. When the prince found Cinderella she wasn't wearing her ball gown and tiara and lying around drinking sweet tea. She was dirty from cleaning all day and dressed in an old, torn brown dress. When Jesus finds you, you probably won’t be in a dreamy prom dress while riding in the back of your private limo drinking an iced, fat-free caramel latte from Starbucks. You will be your every day self wearing your comfy school clothes, running errands for your mom, finishing homework, babysitting your sister, and practicing your piano. You will be you. Cinderella was who she was everyday - she didn't have a mask on. The prince saw her for who she really was. Jesus sees you for who you really are. Once the prince realized he was with Cinderella, he spun her around and rejoiced because he found his beautiful bride. Cinderella and the prince did live happily ever after. However, before the prince and Cinderella could live happily ever after, Cinderella had a choice to make. Would she receive his love and let this prince sweep her off her feet and change her life forever or would she continue feeling unworthy and living how she always had before? You have the same choice Cinderella had. Will you open the door of your heart and allow Jesus to sweep you off your feet and change your life? Will you allow Him to transform you into His princess or do you want to stay the way you are? Cinderella chose to follow her prince. What will you decide?

Having a relationship with Jesus Christ is as easy as ABC:

      A - Admit you are a sinner and that you aren't perfect - none of us are, we are ALL human! Everyone one of us has broken one of the Ten Commandments (you know, cheating, lying, stealing, using God's name like a swear word…)
      Romans 3:23 - "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God."
      1 John 1:9 - "If we claim we have not sinned, we make him (Jesus) out to be a liar…"

      B - Believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who died and rose again to be the Savior of the world.
      Acts 16:31 - "Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved."

      C - Confess your sins to Jesus and ask Him to come into your heart.
      1 John 1:9 - "If we confess our sins, he (Jesus) is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."
      Romans 10:9-10 - "That if you should confess with your mouth Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved."
      Revelation 3:20 - "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in."

What Do I Do Next?

1. Begin your relationship with Jesus. When you meet a new friend you spend time with her and talk with her. Prayer is simply talking to God. You can talk to Jesus about anything and everything. Come on, we're chicks - we definitely know how to talk! The first conversation with Jesus is an invitation to begin your relationship. Remember, it is not about the the words of the prayer, but about the person you are praying to - Jesus Christ! Here is a sample prayer:

Dear Jesus, I admit that I am a sinner. I know that I am nothing on my own. I believe that you are the Son of God. I want to have a personal relationship with you. I confess my sins to you. Please come into my heart and cleanse me of my sins. Father God, I realize I won't ever be perfect, but please help me to learn more about You every day. Thank you so much. I love you. In Jesus' Name I pray, Amen.

All of Heaven is rejoicing right now because of the decision you just made! Girl, go get some ice-cream to celebrate!

2. Being a Christian doesn't stop there. Relationships involve communication and time. Talk to God every day! Talk about everything that is going on in your world. Dig into His Word, the Bible. Start by reading the gospel of John (he was Jesus' closest friend). Get involved in your local church. God wants to be your best friend. He is ALWAYS there for you!

3. We are so proud of you (so is Jesus)! We are always here for you if you have questions or just want to hang out. Contact Andrea at andrea@andreastephens.com or catch Emily on her blog at emilybcummins.blogspot.com!