Pinterest – good for Bible study, too.

pinterest logo corkboard

I’m a big pinterester. Love love love love love it. I get recipes from pinterest, home decor ideas, household tips, fashion advice, running motivation, and, yes, even ministry ideas.

This week as I was trying to think of a creative way to get discussion going in an upcoming small group for high school girls I decided to see what Pinterest had to offer. Of course, before typing anything in the search bar I had to scroll through my page just to see what new pins had shown up. (It’s mandatory, right?) That’s when it hit me.

Just look through Pinterest. As an activity. So often when I’m scrolling through I see a quote or a picture and think, “That’s so true…” or sometimes the opposite, “WHAT???” Either way, what better conversation starter is there than an entire field of images, quotes, and ideas that either resonate or really, really don’t?

So here’s the plan –

Have group members bring up Pinterest on their phone (may want to hit up the girls first, even though it’s totally okay and possible for a teenage guy to have Pinterest on his phone). If no one has it, just bring it up on a computer. Chances are, someone in your group uses it or has at least scrolled through it once or twice. If people have it on their phone, ask them to find a pin that is really meaningful to them and to share it with the group. Then, talk about it. Why is it meaningful? What does it say? Agree, disagree? You know, basic conversation stuff. If you’ve just got it on one computer (or iPad, or tablet) then have someone scroll and pick something. Take turns picking pins to talk about.

You can pick a quote and talk about it. You can pick a picture of an exotic location and talk about it. Pick a picture of a “dream house” and talk about it. (If you’re dealing with a group of girls, PLEASE talk about those fake/future wedding pins and the difference between a wedding and a marriage – and the importance of preparing for your marriage, not your wedding.) Talk about the fashion. Talk about the food.

There are literally hundreds and thousands of things to choose from. Millions.

For example:

before-you-marry-someone

I don’t know about you, but I transform from Dr. Jekyll into Mr. Hyde at the slightest sign of technological difficulties. Chances are, there are some people in your group who might know a few people who react similarly… like themselves. So.

  • Do you agree? Disagree?
  • What do we learn about someone when we see them angry and know what they’re angry about?
  • What do we think people learn about us when we’re the angry ones?
  • How do you handle your anger?
  • What’s the difference between handling anger in a healthy way or letting it become destructive?
  • And so on… So many possibilities.

So get to pinning, then get to talking!

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Who’s got the time? (an exercise in futility)

Everyone’s busy.

Like, really, really busy.

When I was growing up I don’t remember being so busy. I remember adults having fuller schedules than the kids. That trend seems to have reversed. Today, kids are the busiest of all.

I have students who play sports – multiple – year-round. Every sport is a year-round activity these days. What happened to the 3-month season? In the off-season kids are expected not just to stay in shape (a great idea) but to participate in team lifting or workouts multiple times a week. Are coaches aware they’re not dealing with professional athletes, that they’re JUST COACHING PEE-WEE FOOTBALL?

And these kids are working, too. They’ve got part-time jobs. They babysit.

They go to school, a full-time job even without the homework.

They have friends, they have family, they have things they enjoy doing that are important to them.

And many of them even manage to participate in worship from time to time – which is a miracle given the fact they have more activities than hours in a day.

But when it comes to other faith-forming activities, like small groups, that’s harder to fit in. It was a given that we students would be involved in small groups and Bible studies when we were in youth group because, well, we didn’t have a whole lot going on. Not the case anymore. It’s not on the radar.

I’m all about faith-formation happening at home and in the family. Big fan. But I’m also a believer in being able to connect with other people who are not related to you. Peers and caring adults are important in our faith journey, too. I miss that.

Who has the time?