After the General Session my buddies and I stuck around to watch the premiere of a new Nooma video. The title was "Rhythm," and it was based on one of Rob Bell's talks from the past year about the rhythm we all live in (often without knowing it). Seeing this, though meant that when it was over we were late for whatever late-night option we were going to, making it a late, late-night option (ouch - I know... bad play on words).
My friend Brian and I headed upstairs to find a forum he was interested in. This is how it read in the schedule:
- "Forum: Youth Ministry In A Small Town (no host) - 328"
After walking around the third floor, we passed by the room it was in without noticing it. Yes... that's right. A forum on small town ministry... and we missed it because we blinked. (Okay... that's a little funny, right?)
Then when we found it... it was empty. YEP! Absolutely EMPTY! (Obviously, if you're not "Rolling On The Floor, Laughing" right now you've never served in a small town church)
So we headed over to another seminar and bumped into David Crowder along the way. I demanded his attention for 60 seconds during which I shared a clever anecdote about how my four-year old likes "music about Jesus" (versus Nick Jr. songs) because of one of his new tunes. He nodded, then left the hallway with much haste.
Finally, we found the "Middle School Idea Lab" hosted by Alex Roller, Scott Rubin, and Heather Flies. Here are some notes:
- Shrinking Musical Chairs: Played like regular musical chairs except you sit on people's laps until you fall off.
- Slipper Formal: Kids get dressed up in formal attire but wear slippers. First there is a red carpet style welcome at the church with parents and photo opps. Then they head off for something fun like the zoo or a movie, finishing with dessert somewhere.
- Strobe Light/Pillow Fight/Gut-Bomb Night: A progressive fast food night where kids go from place to place eating one large item at each place (i.e. McDonald's fries, Wendy's frosty, etc). Then the kids go back to the church for a huge pillow fight while strobe lights go off. Apparently this is a puke fest (I don't know how the leaders get away with this) so have trash cans handy.
- Jesus Watermelons: Get some watermelons and have kids use Sharpie markers to draw a picture of Jesus on it. They then carry it around town to see how many people they can get in a Polaroid picture. Special points awarded to different people (i.e. a policeman, a cashier, etc)
- Old Couch pics: People donate couches to the youth ministry every four years and the kids go get them. Since it's a small town, the kids literally pick them up and walk them back to the church, taking pictures along the way in odd places.
Personally, I'm looking forward for next year's seminar "509 Ways To Break A Junior Higher In Half," but this will do for now.