Next Level Church https://nextlevelchurch.com Wed, 20 Jun 2018 19:25:30 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.6 3 Simple Things If You Are a Single Parent https://nextlevelchurch.com/3-simple-things-if-you-are-a-single-parent/ Tue, 09 May 2017 13:00:01 +0000 http://nextlevelchur.wpengine.com/?p=959 If you are a single parent: 3 Simple things… 1. You’re doing a way better job than you think you are. 2. Your kids really do appreciate how hard you work, they just don’t know to tell you. 3. You are the heroes and backbones of a generation of kids. Never forget, we love you…

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If you are a single parent:

3 Simple things…
1. You’re doing a way better job than you think you are.
2. Your kids really do appreciate how hard you work, they just don’t know to tell you.
3. You are the heroes and backbones of a generation of kids.

Never forget, we love you and want to help you. Don’t be afraid to tell us how we can.

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“13 Reasons Why” – How Do We Respond as Parents? https://nextlevelchurch.com/13-reasons-why-how-do-we-respond-as-parents/ Mon, 01 May 2017 13:00:34 +0000 http://nextlevelchur.wpengine.com/?p=953 Maybe you’ve already heard, maybe not, but Netflix series “ 13 Reasons Why ” has captivated a generation. Since it’s release on March 31st, millions of teenagers have watched the entire series. In the series, Hannah Baker, a high school student has taken her own life. Before she does, she lists 13 reasons why she…

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Maybe you’ve already heard, maybe not, but Netflix series “ 13 Reasons Why ” has captivated a generation. Since it’s release on March 31st, millions of teenagers have watched the entire series. In the series, Hannah Baker, a high school student has taken her own life. Before she does, she lists 13 reasons why she has.

The scenes and episodes gradually become extremely graphic with rape and suicide through the series. Additionally, the show, perhaps unintentionally, romanticizes suicide by showing it as a possible option for vengeance.

Why is this so popular? “13 Reasons Why” is another indication that the next generation is crying out to be heard. With every post they are asking the questions, “Am I being heard?” “Does anyone notice me?” “Does anyone care about me?” What if your teen needs to have a voice more than they need to hear your voice? What if they need to know you’re not only hearing them, but listening to them?

So how should we respond as parents:

I would encourage you to have a conversation about it, whether they’ve watched the series or not.

If your teen has not watched it, they’ve heard about it. Ask them if they want to watch it and why or why not. Ask how their conversations have been with their friends. Ultimately, I encourage you to steer them away from watching the series.

If they want to be able to participate in conversations with their friends about the show, consider reading a few summaries instead to avoid the graphic imagery.

Summary 1
Summary 2
Summary 3

If your teen has watched the series, it is important to talk to them about how it made them feel. Perhaps they feel hopeless or they feel compelled to do something to help. Listen carefully and allow your teen to express their feelings. Then, offer and remind them of hope. In a narrative filled with hopelessness, in a world that embraces that truth is relative and whatever we feel is truth, we must lovingly lead and point back to what is true.

God’s gift is a hope-filled narrative that begins with overcoming the grave and ends with the restoration of all things. We can walk in that hope today; that no matter what we face, Jesus walks with us and gives us the power to overcome and see our hearts restored.

If you or someone you know is considering self-harm or having suicidal thoughts, contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.

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3 Ways to Connect https://nextlevelchurch.com/3-ways-to-connect/ Tue, 25 Apr 2017 13:00:34 +0000 http://nextlevelchur.wpengine.com/?p=955 Here is a statement I have never heard a parent of a teenager say: “It is so easy to talk to my teen, all the time.” Here are a few simple things you can do to spark conversation & 3 ways to connect with your teen: 1. ASK WHAT THEY’VE LEARNED Ask what they learned, especially…

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Here is a statement I have never heard a parent of a teenager say: “It is so easy to talk to my teen, all the time.” Here are a few simple things you can do to spark conversation & 3 ways to connect with your teen:

1. ASK WHAT THEY’VE LEARNED

Ask what they learned, especially on the drive home from youth group or church. As soon as you ask “so what did you learn?” the reply, especially if you have a boy, will be “stuff,” “Jesus,” or a piece of an illustration that is too vague to decipher like, “we are like robots that God invented.”

Having a little more info is helpful and can set you up for success.

This is why we offer our Collide text service and every Wednesday night we’ll text you a specific question to ask your teen.

Text COLLIDEPARENT to 41411

Specific questions spark quality conversations.

2. PRAY FOR & WITH THEM

This can be a scary one. Some people do not like to pray out loud. If this is you, let me encourage you… You don’t have to have it all figured out, have a biblical degree, or know the bible front and back. All you have to do is have a conversation with God. Model it, even if it’s messy and you feel uncomfortable. Remember that you are the spiritual leader in your student’s life.

Praying for and with your student does two things:
1. It models a healthy habit and teaches them
2. It is an act of love

I had a professor once say, “I used to think that when my kids became teens I could back off a little and not have to spend as much time with them. So I worked 50 hours a week. Now I realize that they needed me more than ever as teens.”
The teenage years are not the time to let off the gas and coast through the seasons. Be intentional. You have approximately 208 weeks to influence your teen from the time they start freshman year to graduation.

These are the years to spend MORE time with your student.

They are making choices like crazy; who they are going to be, who they are going to hang with, and so much more. So play a sport with them, watch a show, go get ice cream, or find a hobby. Whatever you do, always know, you are the most influential voice in your student’s life. Your love matters. Your voice matters. You matter.

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Students Impact Guatemala With the Love of Jesus https://nextlevelchurch.com/students-impact-guatemala-love-jesus/ https://nextlevelchurch.com/students-impact-guatemala-love-jesus/#respond Tue, 02 Feb 2016 21:11:10 +0000 http://nextlevelchur.wpengine.com/?p=1008 Recently the Next Level Leadership Academy went on a missions trip to Guatemala. The students partnered with our missionaries, Randall and Jackie Darby. The week spent there was focused on mission’s life and ministry on the mission field, specifically in Guatemala but can be applied anywhere in the world. Their main assignment was to plan…

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Recently the Next Level Leadership Academy went on a missions trip to Guatemala. The students partnered with our missionaries, Randall and Jackie Darby. The week spent there was focused on mission’s life and ministry on the mission field, specifically in Guatemala but can be applied anywhere in the world. Their main assignment was to plan a children’s outreach and empower the local church in the mountain village of El Tablón. After planning, organizing and a taste of language school, we walked through the village inviting all the children to the Saturday outreach. It was a week packed full of learning, loving and serving as unto the Lord, without expecting anything in return.

We are excited and proud of each student and can’t wait to see how God ministers to, and through them as they walk out His plans for their lives. This was our first trip ever to be fully funded by the generosity of Kingdom Builders!

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