IS THAT NORMAL? Podcast – Episode 6 NOTES

We hope you enjoyed our Christmas Eve Special regarding traditions. Making significant memories with our children and creating ties to their heritage are crucial to preparing them for healthy relationships in the future.

While there is a lot of value of both tried and true traditions and new holiday memories, they all need to based on three basic concepts:

  1. SECURITY – One of the basic needs of humans is to feel secure and safe. Intentional traditions help create an environment where children know they are loved and taken care of.
  2. EXPECTATION – Not that we want to meet every expectation of our children, but we want to create a sense of consistency that helps our children know what to expect from us. This will help them also form that same view of knowing how to trust and expect good things from God.
  3. CENTERING – We all need things that we anchor our lives to that are bigger than us and our own story. Traditions can be a great tool to tie our children’s lives back to the heritage of our family and the history of our faith.

A few ideas if you are trying to form new or rebooted traditions in your household:

  1. ASK YOUR FAMILY – Seek out ideas from your parents and beyond to come up with great ideas to carry on the family traditions.
  2. KEEP IT SIMPLE – Don’t try to be extravagant; be consistent.
  3. MAKE IT FUN – Make sure that you laugh together this holiday!

One neat, classic resource we referenced was Shirley Dobson & Gloria Gaither’s Let’s Make a Memory. They have a lot of wonderful ideas on making memories and traditions during all different settings, including the holidays.

We pray that you have a wonderful time with your family this Christmas and make some great memories. We also pray that your lives can become increasingly centered on Christ and His Truth.

Merry Christmas and, as always, Be Abnormal!

IS THAT NORMAL? Podcast – Episode 5 NOTES

In this heart-focused EPISODE, we discussed the necessity of evaluating what’s inside our hearts to make sure we have the right behavior on the outside. Too often we get that backwards, but, as Jesus reminded us, our mouths speak from the overflow of the heart. (Luke 6:45)

Some of the foundational thoughts behind this episode come from Andy Stanley’s book. You can get it in it’s updated version – Enemies of the Heart – or in it’s original format complete with cool monster-movie references – It Came From Within!

We went through some basic steps to helping ourselves and our families evaluate our hearts:

  1. ASK HEART QUESTIONS – Make planned times to lead our families to introspection.
  2. IDENTIFY MOTIVES – Unveil the root issues behind behaviors and conflicts.
  3. REMEMBER THE GOAL – We are wanting to develop people; not just stop behavior.

We’re so glad you checked out our podcast today. We pray that some of our ideas help your family to grow closer to Christ. We’d love to hear your thoughts, comments, or questions. You can leave those in the comment section of whatever platform you are receiving this information on. We also encourage you to share this podcast with others and write a review through your podcast app, so we can get the word out more!

Be Abnormal!!

IS THAT NORMAL? Podcast – Episode 4 NOTES

In this EPISODE we talked at length about leading your family to know the Bible through Family Devotions. We looked at some models and schedules, discussed how to have grace and goals, and went over a LOT of resource ideas. Here’s some links to those resources:

D6’s parents blog SPLINK – a weekly parents guide for engaging your family in conversations and activities to develop faith in Christ.

R.C. Sproul’s Essential Truths of the Christian Faith – over 100 short devotionals covering the major doctrines of the Christian faith.

The Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones – A beautifully illustrated and incredibly written paraphrase of the Bible aimed to help those of all ages understand the epic story of Jesus that is woven throughout all the books of the Bible.

Bob Goff’s Everybody Always – A captivating memoir-type book that challenges us to give up fear and love the way Jesus does.

Making Brothers and Sisters Best Friends – Written by a set of siblings on how they rose to the challenge of having a Christ-honoring relationship. A wonderful resource for a household with several children.

How Happiness Happens by Max Lucado – Max’s take on how we obey all of the “one another’ commands from Scripture.

As we indicated in the podcast, these are just a few suggestions to help get you started. What’s really important is that you start regularly, intentionally getting your family together to seek God and apply His truth to your lives. So this week, make a plan and be abnormal!

IS THAT NORMAL? Podcast – Episode 3 NOTES

This EPISODE is a review of the book Growing With by Kara Powell and Steven Argue. If you are in a position of influence over young people ages 13-28, we strongly encourage you to grab a copy of this book and look further into the concepts we highlight in this podcast.

Growing With is a resource associated with several other organizations and products that we mention in this episode, such as…

ORANGE ministry partner

Fuller Youth Institute

Growing Young – Powell & Argue’s prior related work

Sticky Faith Youth Curriculum

As for Growing With, the big overall standout to us was the book’s paradigm shift to lifelong parenting at different capacities through different stages. We don’t stop being a parent on our child’s 18th birthday, but our roles must shift in conjunction with their changing role. Here’s a general guide to what they say those roles are:

LEARNERS are adolescents age 13-18. During this period of development, parents need to be TEACHERS, intentionally helping their child learn and develop relational, vocational, and spiritual abilities.

EXPLORERS are young adults age 18-23. During this period of time, parents need to transition to GUIDES who reflect and point their children to progress as they investigate and explorer their life and possibilities.

And FOCUSERS are young adults age 23-29. During this life-stage, parents need to become RESOURCERS who are available with advice and experience when their child decides to seek them out.

We found Growing With a fantastic resource that we believe will help parents and others that work with young people continue the necessary conversations to promote growth into faith-filled, fully-functioning adults.

If you haven’t already, subscribe to our weekly podcast through the link at the bottom of the page. And Be Abnormal!

IS THAT NORMAL? Podcast – Episode 2 NOTES

While we love ROCKSTARS and ROB JONES, in this podcast we make the great point that the most influential people in a child’s life are potentially their parents. As a parent, you have a unique and broad platform to be a spiritual influence in your child’s life now and in the future.

You don’t have to be a Bible scholar or have it all together to do this. Some of the basic starting points we discussed in this EPISODE are:

Start with prayer: Make a daily “big things only God can do” prayer list and include your children on it.

Share your journey: When we share our path to trusting in Christ (messes and detours included), it can really help a young person see their way through their own journey.

Be Intentional: Influencing your children for Christ is not easy and will never happen if you don’t make a plan and an effort.

Listen: Make sure you don’t do all the talking, but make yourself available to really hear where they are at – in life and in faith. And sometimes that means losing some sleep!

Lastly, we want to encourage you. You’re not alone. You will make mistakes. You won’t have all the answers, but when we make the margin, have the courage, and, if need be, say I’m sorry, we are going to find ourselves poised to be the greatest youth leaders our kids could ever have!!

Here are some ways you can continue to connect with us:

Here on our website – isthatnormal.org (click on the SUBSCRIBE at the bottom of the page)

Watch our smiling faces on our video format on Calvary Chapel’s Facebook page.

Subscribing or downloading through iTunes, Google Play, or Spotify

Be Abnormal!!

IS THAT NORMAL? Podcast – Episode 1 NOTES

We are so excited to start this new adventure with you. For so long, we have prayed for a way to be more of an influence in the parents of the youth that we teach each week. I believe God has brought us to this format to help encourage, support, and resource parents.

Parenting is one of the hardest things we will ever do and our culture has magnified some of the common struggles of adolescents. This first episode unpacks our heart and direction for how this podcast will address those issues. We particularly start with a conversation about FOMO and reference a great resource, Tony Reinke’s 12 Ways Your Phone is Changing You. We’ll highlight this book more in depth with a future episode, but I recommend anyone who is living in the 21st Century to read this fascinating treatise on the theology of technology. You’ll be surprised at his conclusions!

We also make the challenge to start dispelling ours and our childrens’ fears with truth. One great way is to start the daily habit of reading the Bible with your children. Again, we’ll talk about some other great ideas on this in an upcoming episode, but encourage you to start this week by daily reading the Shema prayer from Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and discuss how you as a family can do what it says.

We look forward to spending time with you each week. Our podcast will by weekly episodes releasing on Tuesday morning. Here are all the ways you can access us:

Here on our website – isthatnormal.org (click on the SUBSCRIBE at the bottom of the page)

Subscribing or downloading through iTunes, Google Play, or Spotify

Watch our smiling faces on our video format on Calvary Chapel’s Facebook page.

Be Abnormal!!

“Is That Normal?”

As a Youth Pastor of almost 20 years, this is a question I have been often asked by fearful parents. As those responsible for the shaping of fragile young lives, we want to be sure we aren’t totally messing up their futures.

I have increasingly seen my role as one of parental support, as much as discipler of young people. So out of the desire to be a better resource for parents, I’ve decided to start a podcast. We will be launching later this month. I will be joined by one of my long time youth volunteers – Randell Boggs, as we explore topics such as technology, communicating with teenagers, having good conversations about socially hot topics, and spiritual development. We will also be highlighting lots of other great resources that can help us lead our children through adolescence into adulthood, particularly encouraging them to follow Christ.

Our podcast will be roughly twenty minutes an episode, releasing every Tuesday. Hope to have you join us soon!