I Corinthians 13 for Youth Leaders

-By Dave Boyd

And now I will show you the most excellent way.

If I give amazing talks every Wednesday with three points and a funny story, but have not love, I might as well be talking to myself.

If I possess deep insight into the lives of teenagers, and surprise the elder board by my depth of Bible knowledge, but have not love, I will not make a difference.

If I have a fired-up faith that can wake kids up (even on Sunday mornings) but have not love, I will not be used by the Spirit to bring revival.

If I give up my ambition for fame, and I learn to be content with my salary, and if I sacrifice my body to all-nighters, week-long mission trips, and a steady diet of fast-food and pizza, but have not love, it won’t get me anywhere.

Love is patient, giving us peace even when teenagers are late getting back to the bus.

Love is kind, enabling us to speak inviting words in a world filled with sarcasm and satire.

It does not envy our students who drive a better car than us, nor bemoan how we suffer for Jesus.

Love is not proud, and does not worry about our image among the church’s big givers or influential leaders.

It is not rude, but listens and values others.

It is not self-seeking, realizing that your ministry is not for or about you.

It is not easily angered when the boys don’t follow the rules of your new game.

When looking at people, it does not remember their past criticisms, but only sees the best in others.

It always protects those who have never known safety, it always inspires trust by living a life of integrity, it always holds out hope for those who have lost their way, and it will never give up on those who stray.

Love never fails.

Stunning talks will be forgotten, and exciting activities will pass away. Even the most amazing retreat will move from reality to photos.

Love, however, is the gift that is not forgotten, always needed, and forever impacting.

When I began in youth ministry, I was a child. I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. But now I have become a man, putting childish ways behind me.

I will choose the way of love.

Broken Down

Sorry I haven’t been blogging lately. My hard drive crashed again, and my computer is still being worked on. As soon as it’s back up and running I’ll be posting regularly for your reading enjoyment. Well, OK, for my sanity. lol

My Nieces in Virginia Beach After Storms

From my sister via my dad: A huge storm hit VA over the past couple of days. Today, April took the girls out to clean up sticks in the back yard. Here’s what happens when you turn your back on three little girls and some mud puddles.

Devotion to Christ in Ordinary Life

For the past couple of months I have been using Devotional Classics edited by Richard Foster and James Bryan Smith to guide my quiet times. I read it while in seminary, but it is even more rich today. Here’s an excerpt from today’s reading quoting William Law (1686-1761):

“It is very observable that there is not one command in all the gospel for public worship …. Frequent church attendance is never so much as mentioned in all of the New Testament. But the command to have a faith which governs the ordinary actions of our lives is to be found in almost every verse of Scripture.”

“Isn’t it strange that people place so much emphasis upon going to church when there is not one command from Jesus to do so, and yet neglect the basic duties of our ordinary life which are commanded in every page of the Gospels?”

Home Sweet Home!

Well, 30 hours after driving to the airport in Tanzania I arrived home safely with all of my luggage and was so glad to see my wife and daughters! We had a joyous reunion and it felt so good to be home! This morning I was back in the office and it was good to see that my assistant Giovanni was able to hold the fort down and hear of the good things that happened while I was away.

Thank you all so much for your prayers and support. I had an absolutely wonderful time ministering alongside of my grandfather. What a tremendous privilege and testimony of God’s faithfulness! If you haven’t already done so, scroll down to read full accounts of our ministry adventures and to see some picture slideshows.

Tanzania Saturday & Sunday

Yesterday morning we drove about an hour and a half up into the mountains to Mt. Meru. We visited the small church of our friend Kitomari. We had a lovely time of fellowship over chai, boiled eggs, and apples before the church service. I spoke in the service, and afterward we went back to his home and enjoyed a meal together. After that we drove to the town of Tengeru where we were staying the night with the Fessers – Elim missionaries from Canada. We had a wonderful time with them during the evening, also meeting their son, his wife, and their 3 children. I caught a gecko for the children and had fun showing it to them. Of course I hung it from my ear for them. lol! This morning we drove about 45 minutes to the city of Arusha which is the most progressive city around. There we attended the church of Noeli who was one of my grandparent’s workers when they were here. He has quite a good sized church with about 250-300 people there. It was a wonderful service complete with three choirs and a trio. I preached, and after church we had a nice meal with Noeli and his family. We then drove back to Tengeru and visited a church that my grandfather pastored for about 10 months back in the late 80’s. There we got to see the pastor and the assistant pastor, Ndelileo who was my grandparents’ other worker. It was so good to see him as well! After a brief stop back at Fesser’s we drove back to Moshi and are spending our last night at the home of the Street’s. Tomorrow some leisure and tomorrow night at 10:30 p.m. we begin our flights home. Can’t wait to see my babe and babies!

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Tanzania 6
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox slideshow

Tanzania Monday – Friday

Well, after a week of teaching at Kilimanjaro Christian College and only two brief opportunities to check e-mails at internet cafes, we have returned to the home of the Street’s where I have internet access. There is really too much to tell, but let me just highlight a few things.

We had a wonderful time teaching 22 students, most of them pastors (one man is a bishop with 42 churches under his leadership), Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther. My grandfather Dan Larkin told me that we would split the teaching down the middle – he would teach one book and I would teach two. I said, “That’s not half.” He said, “I decide where the middle is.” lol! I have been learning Larkinomics. On Thursday night we had a banquet for the three students who had completed their courses. The power is turned off on a daily basis here in shifts throughout the city in order to conserve energy. It’s usually out once or twice a day for an hour or more. As soon as we began the service the power went out, so we did the first hour of the program in the dark with just a few flashlights and a couple of lanterns. Thankfully it came back on while we were eating and we were able to see the rest of the program. It was very nice, and grandpa and I were honored to sit at the head table and were asked to give a charge to the students. We were presented with those confetti neclace things as part of the evening ceremonies.
During our time at the school I was also able to present the pastor/head of the school, Lazaro with the keyboard which a gentleman from our church donated to meet a need they had. They were very blessed! Thanks Bruce! Grandpa and I were also able to get together and purchase a refrigerator for Lazaro and his wife Eli. This will help them tremendously as they can buy food in larger quantities at a cheaper price, they can freeze food, and they can keep leftovers and stretch their food. What a great, practical investment that will be a great blessing to them!
On Wednesday we visited the church of our friend Unity, who was one of our interpreters when I was here in 1991. He really took to me back then and we were so excited to reunite. I spoke in his church to a small group, mostly young people. This was one of the most interesting things of the trip thus far … After the service as we were greeting people, a girl came up to me. I told her my name was Kevin and she said, “I know.” Surprised, I said, “You do?” She said, “Yes, I have a picture with you hanging on my wall.” Obviously from 18 years ago, I asked her how old she was and she said she was 20. She has kept a picture of me holding her as a 2-year old baby for 18 years! Crazy! When we went to Unity’s house, he brought out a frame with many pictures in it as well, and in it still, is a school picture I gave him of me when I was about 14 or so. So funny!
Well, those are just a few of the many stories. This weekend I will be speaking in two more churches of people I met when here before. Looking forward to seeing them. Monday night we start for home. Can’t wait to see my family! Miss you girls!
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Tanzania 5
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox slideshow

Tanzania Saturday Night & Sunday

Last night (Saturday) as I was walking back to my room I heard a noise in the bushes. I shined my flashlight over and saw a little hedgehog. He balled up when the light hit him, so I ran up to my room and grabbed my camera. When I returned he was still there, so I called some of the others to come out and Anne picked him up. He was puffing and making his defense noises, but after a couple of minutes he decided it was safe and came out. So cute!

I was super tired and I crashed hard. After 4 hours of deep sleep I woke up at 2 a.m. but thankfully I was able to fall back to sleep again and slept until 6 a.m. – a good 8-hour sleep. This morning after breakfast we drove about 45-minutes to church, picking up several people along the way. We had 4 people in the back seat, and the trunk of the truck full as well. After dropping us off, Steve then made another drive throughout the town picking up another load of people. We had service under the straw shelter outside of a small mud hut – their church. We had 100 people under this overhang which is the size of my office (not including the closet). They would easily get 300-400 people in our new youth center. lol! The service started off with singing from hymnals. Songs were selected by the people according to what they wanted to sing. Then some led out in other songs. They sang until no more songs were suggested – there was no song list. Then guests introduced themselves. The audience was Masai and Chaga peoples. I then preached a message which was interpreted into Swahili and then interpreted from Swahili into Masai. After that I prayed for the people. Then Steve, the missionary here, gave another challenge to the people and then a town-hall-like meeting ensued. People in the community have been letting their goats into the church yard and they have eaten everything. They talked about the problem for an hour. THey also brought up an issue with people volunteering to work on the church property, but only two people showed up of all of the people that had volunteered. And I though it was only in America. lol! After church we mingled with the people for another hour before driving back home and having lunch. I then caught a brief nap. We’re now visiting with some Irish missionaries, and soon we will be going to the Bible college where we will be staying through Friday as we teach our class. I most likely will not be able to post during these days, so …
Until next time,
Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Tanzania 4
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Make a Smilebox slideshow