Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Behind the Music: Psalty

I saw this over at Stuffchristianslike.blogspot.com and thought it was amusing, so I decided to bring it to you! Happy New Years Eve!!!

Friday, December 26, 2008

This really is a different world

Than the one I grew up in. I'm 29 years old, old enough to remember pagers and dial up internet. We live in a world where technology is changing things so fast that our morals are having a hard time keeping up. Some have referred to this age as the "Wild, Wild West" of the Web 2.0 era, and stories like what I read a couple days ago reinforce this fact. Here's a snippet of the story:
Surely that's a typo, I thought, when I first saw this story. A misplaced decimal point. A bad guess. Something, anything to restore faith in humanity. Alas, it appears that's not the case and the numbers are true: According to a study of over 1,000 teens and young adults from 13 to 26, one in five said they posted nude pictures or videos of themselves online, or emailed them to someone else.
That's 20% of teens and young adults who have done this. Where did they get the idea this was okay? Then again, do they have anyone telling them it's not okay? It reminds you of the days when everything was settled by who had the fastest draw, because that was what seemed right or made the most sense. I wonder how long it will take us to move out of this era, and will our young people still be alive to tell the tale?

-Jeff-

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Nerf Guns

Kadin and I have become obsessed with Nerf Guns after he got this one for his Birthday:



I've been saying for a while that we really need another one, and I think I finally found what Daddy wants for Christmas, check it out:





Thanks to Josh over at Morethandodgeball.com for the video.

-Jeff-

Friday, December 5, 2008

3 Steps to Choosing a Great Retreat Theme

Yesterday Tiffanney and I had a meeting with Jesse Reimers from Marysville 1st Assembly to talk about Winter Camp. We went out and saw the facilities (had to sneak in because they were closed, shhhh, don't tell anyone). We talked over schedules, service ideas and the importance of altar time, and as we're getting ready to leave the subject of what to call the thing comes up. Here are the guidelines we used:
  1. One Word. Yes, I know that's two words, but for some reason we really wanted the title of the Retreat to be one word only. It's simple, yet descriptive. It gets people talking and engages the imagination. And it looks beautiful on graphics, leading to the second point.
  2. Visual. It needs to carry an image behind it. One of the ideas we tossed around was "Ascend". It's a cool one word title, but there are also so many visuals associated with hiking, birds in flight, airplanes, shangri-la, etc. We wanted a theme that would make it easy to create graphics and media to match it.
  3. Fits the Purpose. We didn't really get anywhere until Pastor Jesse mentioned that to find the theme of the camp, we should start at the end. So we talked about our ministries and what we would like to see individual students get out of this experience. Then we tried to work backwards from there.
We're still praying about the theme of the camp, so I can't tell you what it's going to be called yet, but I wanted to post the process while it was still fresh in my mind.

Anything you'd like to add? Leave a comment,

-Jeff-

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Black Friday Eve

How was your Black Friday Eve? You know, the day when you invite family over, prepare a huge feast and sit around the table pouring over sale ads and discussing strategies for the next morning? Maybe I'm being slightly facetious, but I think Thanksgiving is more looked at as the beginning of the holiday shopping season than as a time to be thankful. So, to help me be more conscious of the real reason for Thanksgiving, I Twittered some of the things I was thankful for throughout the day on Thursday. Here are my thoughts from Turkey Day:

Give thanks to the Lord for He is good, His love endures forever. Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!!! 8:30 AM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



I've decided to keep a running list on twitter of all the things I'm thankful 4. 1st off: I'm thankful 4 all that God did 4 me. And family. 9:07 AM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And the smell of turkey that's filling the house. And internet enabled cell phones. And living next door to a church. 9:08 AM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for Christmas music on pandora.com. So much better than 105.3. 10:29 AM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And Safeway employees who work on Thanksgiving. And Starbucks. And my Pontiac Montana. 11:30 AM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for people who think that having to wait for 4 people in line is the end of the world. 11:57 AM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for all who housesit 4 me, then I return the favor. 11:57 AM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for turkey that cooks WAY too fast. 12:25 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for family that understands when you have to move dinner up by an hour. 12:37 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for my new team, the Titans. How do you tell your third string to take it easy on the other team? It's nice to root for a winner. 12:43 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for my DVR, Wii and laptop. Not to mention my two TVs. 12:55 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for Shannon Sharpe: "there is no reason the lions should be playing on T-day. We're sorry you had to watch this." High comedy. 1:07 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for enough storage space to be able to hide our junk without having to deal with it properly. 1:16 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And for turkeys that aren't completely defeatherd. And for not realizing it until after the turkey is cooked. 1:27 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



And I'm thankful that we're getting ready to eat. 2:59 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry



http://twitpic.com/ok16 - And the perfect turkey!!! 3:15 PM Nov 27th from TwitPic



And for grandparents who are willing to watch the kids while we go shopping on Black Friday. 7:13 PM Nov 27th from TwitterBerry




If you want more of my wit and wisdom, check it out at www.twitter.com/pastorjgraham.

-Jeff-

Monday, November 24, 2008

Cool Text Toy!


Pyzam Glitter Text Maker
Glitter Graphics Maker & MySpace Layouts








If your students are into Myspace like mine are, you will want to be able to do some cool stuff with Myspace. So here's a cool toy that allows you to create your own glitter text! Fun Stuff.

Enjoy,
-Jeff-

Friday, November 21, 2008

Invite Night pt 4: Sermon


Invite Night occurred October 15th, 2008 and saw 6 new people come to our youth ministry (there were 37 total for the night), with 5 students getting saved or recommitting their lives to Christ. It was such a resounding success that we've decided to detail the process here so others can take this idea and try it in their ministries.

Here are the other parts: Advertising, Games and Schedule.




Something tragic has occurred. The blog silence for the last two weeks (save for yesterdays post) was for the most part due to the fact that my computer blew up and I was using my outdated laptop for a while. This made doing anything and everything painfully slow. Therefore I tried not to be on the computer as much as possible, which is actually a nice exercise, if you mean to do it and don't have it forced on you.

*End Rant*

I said all of that to say that my actual sermon notes from Invite Night are now missing. If I ever stumble across them I'll post them, but here in a nutshell is what I talked about:

I started by referring to the game Chubby Bunny, and asked them (rhetorically) what they thought the point of a game like that was. After giving them a second to ponder that question, I opened another poll question, asking them their favorite super heroes from their childhood. The best responses were mighty mouse and captain caveman. From there we discussed Jeremiah 29:11 and talked about how God created us with a purpose, like a super hero and unlike Chubby Bunny.

At Youth Conference, the speaker Jeremy Johnson gave a great illustration about how a sponge in it's packaging has all the potential in the world to absorb water, which is it's purpose. However, a sponge can only absorb water when it's placed in water. I talked then about how we were created to be in fellowship with God, that's our purpose, and only in God can we be fulfilled.

That's the night in a nutshell, it was amazing, and even more encouraging is that some of the students are coming back, and they're getting plugged in to their purpose. I would highly recommend doing an Invite Night, in fact, we've got another one planned for January.

Did you do an Invite Night? Leave me a comment.
-Jeff-

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Invite Night pt 3: Schedule


Invite Night occurred October 15th, 2008 and saw 6 new people come to our youth ministry (there were 37 total for the night), with 5 students getting saved or recommitting their lives to Christ. It was such a resounding success that we've decided to detail the process here so others can take this idea and try it in their ministries.

Here are the other parts: Advertising, Games and Sermon.




Here is the schedule for how the evening went down. Check out my other posts for a description of the games we used.

5:45-6:15- Pizza and Poll Questions. We also used this time for visitor registration. For the first time using Polleverywhere.com you have to take time to show them how to do it, and you have to be patient with the ones that aren't catching on.

6:15-6:18- Butterfly Man- A Video Clip that we got from Bluefish TV. You can view it by clicking here.

6:18-6:30- Wii Sports Boxing Tournament. Tournament is too strong a word, there wasn't a bracket. We let students challenge each other based on age and opposing genders. You can read more about the set up by clicking over to part two.

6:30-6:35- Another Poll Question- And a convenient excuse to get the students participating in Atomic Twinkies out of the room while we told everyone else what to expect.

6:35-6:45- Atomic Twinkies- I apologize for not posting pictures, my camera didn't do this game justice. I'm not sure that the students will ever trust an eating game again.

6:45-6:48- SWAT- Another Bluefish video while we cleaned up the mess left behind by the last game and set up for the next one.

6:48-6:57- Chubby Bunny. If you don't know what this game is, you must not be in youth ministry. We ran out of ideas at the last moment (just kidding, it actually segued into the sermon I preached that night).

6:57-7:00- One more Poll Question, some hangout time and a chance to use the restroom before service.

7:00-7:30- Worship. Our youth band rocked that night!

7:30-7:40- Give a ways and announcements.

7:40-8:15- Sermon. But that's a post all to itself.

Is this helpful? Leave a comment.

-Jeff-

Friday, November 14, 2008

What should I do after I get saved?

Below is a letter that I wrote to a girl who recently got saved in one of our church vans coming home from playing mini-golf. I started looking around the internet for resources about what to do after salvation, and since I couldn't find anything I liked, I thought I'd start a series on my blog. This letter will be part one of many:



Hey I just wanted to write and tell you that I think it's awesome that you took this step tonight. I really feel like God was in the whole experience, and I hope you do too. If you ever have any questions about what happened tonight, please ask. The bible says that all you need to do to be saved is what you did tonight, but there is a lot more to being a Christian than just saying one prayer. Here is a recap of the talked about tonight, just to make sure you understand what's happened.

1) God Created You and Loves You Alot. He created the whole world just so he could have a relationship with you. He thinks you are absolutely amazing.

2) Everyone has sinned. It doesn't matter who you are, everyone has done something wrong in their life. The problem is that God is perfect and because He's perfect imperfect people can't have a relationship with Him. We can never do anything right enough to get back together with God, therefore we are destined to be punished.

3) Jesus took our punishment. The reason Jesus came to this world was to take care of the sin problem. Think of sin as a prison, with no way out. Jesus came and took our place in the prison so that we can have a relationship with God.

4) We can live for Him. God wants us to be with Him, and just like any friendship we need to spend time with Him in order for it to grow. We do that by praying and reading the bible. Prayer is easy, you don't need to memorize any fancy sayings or anything like that, you just talk to Him. Tell Him all your feelings, your hurts, and your desires. He just wants to hear from you. Reading the Bible is God's way of talking to us. I would suggest reading in John. Try and read a chapter a day, but if you miss a day don't give up on it.

Well, that's about it for now, since I've already written you a book. Do you have a bible? Let me know how you're feeling when you read this, if you're confused about anything just ask.

I'm proud of you,
-Jeff-

What should I do after I get saved? Part 2 of 8


The most important step you can take after receiving Christ is to get plugged in to a good local church. There are many reasons why this is important, but here's a few to get you started:
  1. To learn about God
  2. To get around people who believe like you do
  3. To encourage you when you mess up
  4. To help you grow in your newfound faith
  5. and lastly, because you don't know what you don't know (more on this in a minute)
A lot of people, including people you know, will tell you that you don't need to attend a church to believe in God. They will tell you that they pray on their own and that is enough for them. They will also tell you that the church is full of people who aren't as "Spiritual" as they are, and that being in church is hurting their faith in God. They will tell you all of this and be completely wrong. The reason is that people don't know what they don't know. The most important reason to be involved in a church is to get together with others who are on a spiritual journey and begin to talk with them. When we get into a church it will prompt thoughts in our heads that we've never thought before. And in doing that we will grow in Christ.

Next time we'll talk about what to look for in a good church.

-Jeff-

What should I do after I get saved? pt 3 of 8


Last time I promised a blog on how to find a good church, and here it is. A good church will have several qualities, including:
  • They Preach from the Bible- seems like common sense. You go to church to learn about God, where do you learn about God except through the bible, so all churches should tell you about the bible right? Unfortunately no. It doesn't always happen. If you're at a church and the Pastor doesn't refer to the bible during his message, get out of there. I don't go to church to hear someone's opinion of life, I want to know Jesus.
  • The People are Friendly- why would you go to a church that wasn't? As a side note, every church pastor I've ever talked to says their church is the most friendly church in the world, not sure if that helps, but there you go.
  • They focus on discipleship- which just means they have a plan to help you get to know God better. Incidentally, I think this is an area where our church struggles a little.
  • They focus on outreach- Some churches are too focused internally. The reason we're here is to tell others about Jesus (we'll cover this later). God longs for us, and for his people to hide in church and expect people to come to them is a disrespect to God.
So there you are, remember that there are no churches out there that are perfect, but some are vastly better than others. Good luck and I hope you continue to get plugged in at church.

-Jeff-

What should I do after I get saved? Pt 4a of 8


What to expect when you get to church

Hopefully by now you've picked out a good church to go to, but I know that some of the things Christians do may seem a little weird. I'm not going to explain how every church functions, but maybe some insight from my church will help you learn about yours. Here are a few things you'll probably experience when attending an average church.
  1. Worship- A typical church service starts with singing. The amount and style vary, but usually there's some sort of worship that takes place. People stand and clap, they raise their hands in the air (it's a physical way of saying "I surrender" to God) or they will bow down on the ground (to humble themselves before Him). Worship is one of the ways we connect with God, it allows us time to focus completely on God and what He's done for us.
  2. Announcements/Greeting- Even now it feels funny to reduce our church service into a formula like this, but it is what it is. During the service someone will stand up and talk about all the things the church has going on that week. Also at some point they will ask you to shake hands with the people around you. Our church is very good at greeting, if you leave there without a handshake, maybe you should have left the chainsaw and hockey mask at home.
  3. Offering- Yes, we will pass bags around to collect money. No, you are not required to give. In fact, if you're a visitor at our church we don't want your money. Because we don't want you to leave feeling like you had to put something in the plate. It doesn't work that way. The bible says God wants a happy giver, not someone who gives because they feel the need to.
Well, this blog is getting a little long, so I'm gonna cut it off for now and post the second half tomorrow. Hope to see you then.

-Jeff-

What should I do after I get saved? Pt 4b of 8



What to expect when you get to church part 2

Yesterday I posted part one of this topic (which BTW is part 4 of another topic). I think the most important thing you can do as a young christian is get into a good Christian church. For the rest of this series, check out the sidebar and click the graphic like the one on the top of this post.

So, without further ado, here are a couple more things you should expect in church:
  1. Preaching- Some people call it "Giving a talk" some call it a message and some call it a conversation. Regardless, at some point during the service someone will stand up (usually the Lead or Senior Pastor) and speak on something from the Bible. Usually there are notes and powerpoint slides available to help you follow the sermon, and the church should be able to get you a Bible before the service if you need one. Also, if you have questions, write them down and find a staff member after church, you'll never know if you don't ask. Remember, the truth is out there!
  2. Altar Call- This is the conclusion of the message, and it's a time when people can come down to the front of the stage (called the altar, I don't know why) and respond to what God is saying to them. Sometimes there is prayer for needs, or because a part of the service touched a person. Sometimes it's loud, other times it's quiet and intimate. During this time just respond as you feel that tugging on your heart.
Well, that's what to expect when you enter a church, be sure to find one near you today!

-Jeff-

What should I do after I get saved? pt 5 of 8

How to read the Bible

If you've been following along on our simple process to becoming a mega-christian superstar(or maybe you're just trying to survive without sinning every 10 minutes), then eventually the question turns to: What do I do with this book? By now you should have gotten a bible (the church you're attending can help you with this if you haven't) and maybe you've thumbed through it a couple times. You may even have decided that you're going to read the whole thing through so you started, like any book, at the beginning, determined to get to the end. I would encourage you to do it a little different.

You see, the bible isn't like any other book you've ever read. In fact, it's a compilation of 66 different books, divided into 2 sections (called testaments), written by different authors and spanning almost 1500 years. Normally I'm not the type of person who reads the end of the book first, but with the Bible you should start in the middle. In fact, start in the book of John (that's in the New Testament, right after Matthew, Mark and Luke). John tells the story of Jesus, the God who became man for you and me. After that, continue on to the end of the bible, reading over the story of the early church in the book of Acts, and then going into a series of letters that were written to encourage the first Christians, 2000 years ago. Pay close attention to these letters because they address a lot of the topics that you might be struggling with. There's some powerful stuff in those letters. And finally, once you've read the ending, go back to the beginning.

There are a few tools you can use to help understand what you're reading in the Bible:
  • Devotional: This is a book that takes a portion of the bible and cuts it up into easy to understand sections. A Christian bookstore or your church can help you find one that's on your level.
  • Concordance: Some Bibles have these in the back, this is a tool that cross-references all of the words used in the Bible, and allows for easy searching of themes and topics. Ex.: If you wanted to find verses about salvation, you look up the word and it points to verses like these: Acts 4:12, Romans 1:16 and others. If you'd rather look online, Biblegateway.com has a keyword search feature that's really handy.
  • Christian Friends: Even among strong Christians, we don't talk about the Bible enough. So ask us questions about it, because it's through dialog that we really grow.
Hopefully this points you down the right path. Comments or questions? Send them to me and I'd be happy to try and help.

-Jeff-

What should I do after I get saved? Pt 6 of 8

Today we're going to delve into a very potent and very misunderstood facet of the Christian life: Prayer. Prayer is, in it's most basic form, a conversation between us and God. In fact, most of the time we try to complicate it and turn it into something else.

Jesus gave us a model for prayer, but He didn't say that this was the only way to pray. Before we read through this model together, take a moment to tell God about how your day is going so far. Go ahead, I'll wait. Good job! That was prayer right there, and that's all it takes to begin building a relationship with God.

However, there is more to prayer if you feel like taking the next step, and Jesus told us how we should pray (Matthew 6:9-13). I'll color code this section, and you can see my comments below.

9 Pray like this: Our Father in heaven,
may your name be kept holy.
10 May your Kingdom come soon.
May your will be done on earth,
as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today the food we need,
12 and forgive us our sins,
as we have forgiven those who sin against us.
13 And don’t let us yield to temptation,
but rescue us from the evil one.

  • Jesus begins by taking time to praise God. He's done so much for us, we need to express our gratitude for how God is working in our lives.
  • God is our King, and as believers we are a part of His Kingdom. We need to learn to obey Him in everything we do, and submit ourselves to His guidance and correction. Jesus is telling us to submit to God.
  • All of us have needs, and God is interesting in helping us. He wants us to ask Him for the silly things, as well as the important. But know that He is A LOT smarter than we are, and He knows what's best for us, even if the answer is no.
  • If you've messed up (and all of us have) He wants us to take the time to say we're sorry.
  • And then ask Him to help keep you from sinning again.
There is a lot more that can be brought out of this teaching on the Lord's Prayer, but my goal here is to wet your appetite for more. Hopefully you're beginning with your day with Bible reading. Take a minute before you open the bible to pray and ask God to show you the truth in His Word, and when you come across something that challenges you, pray about it.

What should I do after I get saved? Pt 7 of 8



Matthew 28:19 says "Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit". Water baptism is clearly not a requirement for salvation, according to the Bible (see Eph. 2:8-9, Rom. 10: 9-10), but it is a command that Jesus made. If you are serious about living as a Christian, this is one of the steps you will need to take, and it's better to do it sooner rather than later. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. Jesus modeled it. Matthew 3 tells of Jesus going to John the Baptist to be baptized in water. While there He says that it must be done "to fulfill all that God requires (Matt 3:15, NLT)". This event marked the beginning of His public ministry.
  2. Jesus commanded it. In Matt 28:19 (see top) Jesus doesn't give the option of baptism, suggesting that it was to always be done.
  3. Baptism is symbolic of what Jesus did for us. Romans 6:3-4 says that in being baptized we identify with Jesus' death, burial and resurrection. It's a picture of what happened to us at salvation, and a great reminder of the cross.
  4. Baptism is a public act. When we are water baptized, we publicly tell everyone of the change that Jesus has made in our lives. It provides accountability by allowing others into the personal decision we made to follow Jesus.
Water baptism isn't talked about nearly enough in the church. Salvation (saying the prayer) is easy, but it's hard to walk out this life. We need people around us to help us out in the tough times, and through water baptism we allow others access to what God is doing in us.

-Jeff-

What should I do after I get saved? Pt 8 of 8


Well, here we are, the end of the basics, but the beginning of this journey for you. If you've enjoyed what I've written here, please leave a comment to let me know. I want to leave you with one final thought, one last tip to get you started on the right foot: Tell someone what's happened to you. Find a Christian that you look up to, and tell them what's going on in your life. Don't assume they're too busy, and don't put this off. It's too important. Try and meet with this person and ask them what it means to be a Christian. Besides talking with God, this is the most crucial step, and yet it's so easy to overlook.

Again, leave me a comment if you have any questions, otherwise may God bless you and keep you, may His face shine upon you, and give you rest. Amen.

-Jeff-

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Invite Night pt 2: Games


Invite Night occurred October 15th, 2008 and saw 6 new people come to our youth ministry (there were 37 total for the night), with 5 students getting saved or recommitting their lives to Christ. It was such a resounding success that we've decided to detail the process here so others can take this idea and try it in their ministries.

Here are the other parts: Advertising, Schedule and Sermon



An hour before service started we opened the doors and unleashed all sorts of fun and craziness. We played three games specifically that I feel went over really well:
  1. Atomic Twinkies. Not sure what the actual name of this would be, but it's hilarious. It's a normal food eating contest, except we spiked the twinkies with Tabasco sauce! You can imagine the look on their faces when they dove in face first (no hands of course) and were chewing along happily only to discover their mouth was on fire!!! We prepped the audience ahead of time so they knew what to be looking for, which added to the fun.
  2. Wii Boxing. By placing a TV monitor on stage and running a LONG RCA cable to the projector, we were able to play the Wii while everyone watched from their seats. The best part was doing Jr High Guy vs Girl and Sr High Guy vs Girl. I think the girls won both matches. Then my five year old schooled a freshman in high school. It's great sitting in the audience and just watching the people box on stage, arms flailing everywhere. We wanted to use it more, but ran out of time.
  3. Polleverywhere.com. I blogged about this right after the event, so you can click here to read about it. It was really fun, although it does take sometime to explain to everyone the first time through. As a side note, I learned that no one in my group with texting capabilities is interested in High School Musical 3? Is that more of a tween thing?
Of course, in addition to this we did standard raffles with CD's and things to give a way, but the games were the best part of the preshow.

Have questions or comments? Leave me a comment and let me know!

-Jeff-

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Moving, plus Saw news

Well, we're moving into our house this week, and as such, some activities are going to have to be put off, like thrilling you with details of our Invite Night activities. But I wanted to hear your thoughts on this article from Plugged in.

According to MTV News, theaters "all over the country" hosted Saw marathons to mark the arrival of the fifth entry in the torture/horror franchise. MTV sent two female interns to sit through the 10 hours of Saw and to record their observations. "The doctor begins to saw his foot off," Kristen Freethy writes during the first movie. "Meanwhile, I'm thinking I have eight more hours of Saw movies." During Saw II, Summer Barry notes, "An hour into the movie, I am finding myself bored. The sequel isn't keeping me on my toes quite as much, and the novelty of blood is wearing off." A few hours later, she says, "Saw IV opens with an autopsy of a naked Jigsaw [the franchise's torture-inflicting mastermind]. ... They rip his face off, then cut him open—I assume they're going for shock value here. Oddly, I discover it's not working on me. I suddenly realize I'm becoming immune to blood, gore and torture. This can't be good." As the fifth installment rolls, Barry says, "The movie opens with a guy being chopped in half. This does not surprise me, but what does surprise me is that the theater erupts with cheers. The question goes from 'What have I become?' to 'Who are these people I'm surrounded by?'" [mtv.com, 10/24/08]

Friday, October 24, 2008

Invite Night pt 1: Advertising



Wednesday the 15th of October we held our first Invite Night at Lake Stevens AG. It was a great night, filled with fun and faith. I thought I'd post our schedule for the night and let you in on a couple ideas we had to make the night fun. Feel free to steal these ideas (because I stole them from someone else). If you end up taking something, leave me a comment and let me know how your night went.

I'll break this up into four parts, advertising, games, schedule and sermon. Hopefully this will give you a picture of what we did, and you can take it from there.

Advertising:
  1. The most important form of advertising you can have is Word of Mouth, and for this event we relied on that exclusively (not on purpose though). When coming back from a conference or retreat, you NEED to do one of these nights. I took our students aside at the end of our trip, handed them an envelope with cards in it and gave them some quick instructions. I told them that when they got to school Monday, they should tell their friends about their weekend and then they should hand them one of these cards. I got several good reports from students who did this, it gave them the opportunity to share with their friends about something exciting in their lives, and they also were able to follow up by giving them an invite to our event.
  2. Here are the cards we used, they're nothing too special, but they were effective.
  3. One thing I wanted to try was to take this invite and put it on myspace, along with the code so the students could copy it to their own pages, but I couldn't figure out how to disable the html code until this afternoon. So here it is for you, I'm sure it will be a hit even though I haven't been able to try it out yet. Put your html code inside a textarea command. This displays the text as is, instead of implementing the instructions from the code. I will do this in the future and let you know how it works out.
Well, that was more about advertising than I was planning on writing, check back next week to hear about what we did for our games and stuff.

-Jeff-

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Mystery Worshipper?

I saw this over on MMI. Here is a blurb from the website:

Mr. Harrison -- a meticulous inspector who often uses the phrase "I was horrified" to register his disapproval of dust bunnies and rude congregants -- poses as a first-time churchgoer and covertly evaluates everything from the cleanliness of the bathrooms to the strength of the sermon. This summer, Mr. Harrison scoured a megachurch in Cedar Hill, Texas, and jotted down a laundry list of imperfections: a water stain on the ceiling, a "stuffy odor" in the children's area, a stray plastic bucket under the bathroom sink and a sullen greeter who failed to say good morning before the worship service. "I am a stickler for light bulbs and bathrooms," he says..."
Click here to read the whole story.

My first thought is, what a cool idea! I believe in trying to be excellent in ministry, and I know that churches get sloppy at times because we forgive each other when we let things slide. To have someone come in and be brutally honest with us would be a great thing.

But I do wonder about someone who's paid to be a professional critic of churches. That would be a tough job for me to do, because so much of what a church does is through volunteers and people who are there more for their heart than their skill. You would hate to see a report like this get to one of those people.

If you've ever tried it post a comment and let me know of your experience!

-Jeff-

Youth Ministry Tools: Polleverywhere.com

Last night I tried something out for the first time, and it worked so well I had to come and blog about it. Polleverywhere.com is a website that allows you to not only poll your students, but to embed the poll in PowerPoint and display the results in real time. Here is a sample poll so you can get the idea:

The one tricky part to this whole thing is that you have to remind the students to type the word "cast" then the number. If you don't type cast, it won't go through. So go ahead and try it out, it works great and is free for the first 30 responses (which is probably good for 75-100 students depending on how many text).

They also have a feature that allows students to text in questions, and those questions update in real time. I asked the teens last night who their favorite superhero was, and they gave all sorts of responses, including captain caveman and batman. Several students had fun just putting their own names or the names of their friends up there. For some reason I can't embed the poll here, or I'd show it to you, but it was great fun.

All in all, it's a very well done, easy to use site. I would highly recommend that you check it out.

-Jeff-

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

And we're back!

Howdy! The last several months have been crazy for me, with trying to find a new job and all, so I decided to put blogging on hold for a few months until everything sorted itself out. Well, I've been at Lake Stevens AG for 1.5 months now, and I think things have settled down to the point that I can devote some time to this passion of mine. I have a fairly consistent group of regular readers and I’d like to know from you, what would you like to read about? After going through my stat reports, it looks like a lot of people come to my blog while searching for Jeremy Johnson. This is because of what I wrote here. But since I don't have funny Jeremy Johnson stories all the time, I'm looking for new material.

I know for sure I want to finish up my series, "What should I do after I get saved?", but then after that I'd like to know what you're looking for. So leave me a comment and tell me what you'd like to hear about.

-Jeff-

Friday, September 5, 2008

Announcements

Normally i won't post youth group announcements on my blog, as it's more geared to fellow youth pastors than to the church, but right now I have to because I need to get this info out quickly and I already know how to do it here (rather than messing with the church website). So sorry for everyone coming here for YM tips, those will start back up once I get settled in at the church.

UPDATE: Updated details are in Bold and Italic, also fixed a link and uploaded a permission slip for the camping trip.


Camping Trip

We'll nail down the final details by Sunday, but for right now here's what we have:
September 12-13 (Meet at the church at 5pm, we'll return to the church at 10am)
Cost: $5
What to bring:
Bible, Tent, flashlight, sleeping bag, pillow, coat, clothes and toiletries. Guitars, sports equipment, or games can also be brought if you'd like.
Transportation: One of the church vans will be available to transport people to and from the Schwendtkes.

Please click here to download a permission slip.





Youth Conference


October 10-11
Cost: $115 (fundraisers are available, please contact me for more info)
What to Bring:
Bible, Pen, Notepad, Sleeping bag, pajamas, change of clothes, deodorant and other toiletries, swimsuit (optional, not sure if the pool will be open or not, girls no two piece suits), spending money, coat
Transportation: Church Vans
Departure/Arrival times: Leaving at 10am on the 10th and returning home at around 10pm on the 11th.

Please click here to view the permission slip

Please click here to view the scholarship application form

Monday, August 4, 2008

My Ministry Philosophy

UPDATE: Just wanted to point out that I'm now employed at Lake Stevens AG. It's an amazing church and I love it here. You'll notice that I deleted the post with my resume, I'm keeping this one and Tiff leading worship because I think they're things people will still be interested in, but I'm no longer looking for work.

What?!?!? Pastor Jeff is blogging again?!?!? Here I thought he was spending his days relaxing poolside, waaaaayyyyy too busy to blog. Well, to all you naysayers out there I say "Ha, I'm not to busy to blog, in fact I'm not doing anything at all (so if you want to get together, leave a comment, e-mail, IM, text, call, snail-mail...)".

In my continued quest for employment, one thing I'm sure will help me is to post important info about me on this blog and label it for quick searching by potential employers. Maybe I'm wrong, but it's one of the things in this situation that I can control, so I'm gonna do it.



My Ministry Philosophy can be summed up pretty simply. "Loving students and equipping them to change the world." I know it's not the most catchy slogan, but it really captures the essence of our ministry pretty well.

Any ministry must be powered by Prayer, it's the engine that keeps us running. Sometimes the most important things can get overlooked, and prayer is definitely the most important thing. As a youth pastor I'm acutely aware of this. If we allow prayer to fall off, it doesn't matter how many cool programs we start or how much we hang out with students, in the end it won't make a lasting impact on their lives. And that's the reason we do this, to equip them to change their world.

If we had to limit ourselves to teaching students to do one thing and do it well, we would teach them how to study the Bible. Tiffanney and I are passionate about discipleship, especially one on one, relational discipleship. We love having students into our home, playing video games and discussing the Bible with them. Tiffanney often times takes students with her grocery shopping, and I try to take people with me when I attend school sporting events and such. I want the students to see who I am, that I'm a real person, and yet I love God, and He has impacted my life in a powerful way.

Our youth services focus on Worship and the Word. We have fun, use technology, and play games when they're appropriate, but the reason we're there is to encounter God, and to teach the students how to meet with Him. This is also why there is an emphasis on the altar in our ministry, because that's where they will make their decision to follow God and where they will find the power to walk with Him throughout their lives.

We love going to camps, retreats and missions trips. On these outings we've seen powerful things happen in the lives of teens. At our last summer camp alone we had 6 students baptised in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. We've seen healings, salvations and students called into the ministry through camps and missions trips, so we place a high priority on sending students to those events.

To sum everything up, our goal again is to "Love students, and equip them to change their world." We will do this by getting involved in their lives and placing them in environments where they can meet with God for themselves. In doing this, they will learn what it means to follow God and share Him with their friends.

-Jeff-

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Tiffanney Leading Worship- Audio

Here is a link to Tiffanney leading worship. The sound quality is bad, but it will give you an idea of what she sounds like. She is an amazing worship leader and knows how to flow with the Spirit during a worship service. Hope you enjoy!

Download Tiffanney Graham - Worship


-Jeff-

Thursday, June 19, 2008

My Latest Sermon

Download Jeff Graham - 1 Samuel 15


This is a Sermon I had the opportunity to preach on Memorial Day weekend. It was really a fun time and a great service. The power of God moved during the service and it was cool to be apart of. One quick note: I haven't listened to this download to make sure everything sounds okay. If you listen to it and there is a problem, please leave a note in the comments and I'll fix it when I get a chance.

-Jeff-

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Saying Goodbye

I'm writing this Saturday night but I won't be posting it until Sunday afternoon. Tomorrow we will be announcing our resignation as the Associate Pastors of Oakville Assembly of God. It is a bittersweet time for us as we say goodbye to all our family here in Oakville, yet we're eager to see what God has in store for us. This is not a new development, but something that God has been stirring in our hearts for several months now. We knew for sure that He was asking us to stay here during the pastoral transition, and to be the interim pastor for that time. Now that Pastor James has been here for several months we know that God is pulling us in a different direction, but at the same time I've been dragging my feet because I haven't wanted to leave. I can't count the number of times I've paced back and forth in the Sanctuary at OAG and thanked God for bringing me to this church, yet now after three years we're set to embark on another journey. Thank-you to all of our church family, you've been a tremendous blessing to us, we wish you well and will pray for you often.

-Jeff-

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Twitter Updates

From 5/23/08

  • 01:07 It's 1am. About time for bed. Just watched water horse, it's pretty good. #
  • 11:14 Checking my e-mail and looking forward to playing with my kids today. I love having the day off. Yes, Olivia, I love you!!!!! #
  • 23:39 Just set up digsby. Pretty cool desktop app that combines a bunch of sites including Twitter, Myspace, facebook and IM. #
Automatically shipped by LoudTwitter

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Recent Updates

There are a couple new ways to find me on the world wide web!







Note: You can view my Twitter feed here on the blog, or at my Myspace or Facebook pages.

Also, we just got high speed internet hooked up at home, so now we can get online with the Wii! So far, I've played Super Smash Bros Brawl a couple times, but I'm totally addicted to Mario Kart Wii online. Especially playing the ghost races. So if you want to find me on either of those, here are my friend ID's:
  • Mario Kart Wii: 5241 2607 6453
  • Super Smash Bros Brawl: 2062 9852 9185
So, find me and send me a message. Thanks for reading.

-Jeff-

UPDATE: I also have my Wii friend code, which is 1271 6672 5171 8936

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Funny Funeral thoughts from Olivia

On Monday we took our kids to a funeral home. Tiffanney's Grandpa went to heaven last Tuesday and we went to say goodbye. It was an interesting experience, having our kids there. We kept prodding them to see if they had any questions about what was happening and they were both pretty close-lipped, except for when Olivia asked why he didn't have any legs(she couldn't see them because half the casket was closed). So I started explaining the process to them, that there would be a service and then he would be buried, etc. I could see them both trying to process things and then all at once a lightbulb went off in Olivia's head. She started to look around excitedly and asked, "Is this heaven?" Oh, the things kids say.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Summer Plans

Tomorrow we'll be unveiling our plans for this Summer at church, but for you loyal blog readers, I'll give it to you first.
  1. Summer Camp- We're going to the combined district camp at Silver Lake this year. I've never been to Silver Lake, but I've heard the campus is amazing, plus it's always a pleasure to be able to work with Tyrone Rinta and the team. June 23-27. $195
    1. As a fundraiser, we'll be holding a silent auction/ice cream social on June 1st. Tiffanney and I took about 35 letters to different businesses yesterday in an attempt to get some things donated. If we get something big donated we will probably have a raffle at the same time.
  2. Oroville Missions Trip- I had the opportunity to sit down with Mark and Kristy Schaufler during the NWMN Conference this week and hear their ideas for this trip. It sounds like we're going there to be a blessing to the community and serve people. Putting together a backpack full of school supplies can be just as powerful as a human video or a testimony. But if you can put both together, it's an amazing thing. Late August (not sure of the dates) $225
    1. Churchwide Garage Sale- This year we're thinking about having it during fourth of July weekend. Last year we raised almost $1,000 and took two loads of stuff to the thrift store. Fun times.
In between Summer Camp and the Missions Trip we'll have 6-7 weeks, which is awesome, but I'm thinking that maybe we'll go camping or something. We've gotta do something right?

-Jeff-

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Jeremy Johnson knows my name!!!

I'm a bit of an introvert. Right now I'm at the NW Ministry Network Annual Conference and, while I love coming to these events, I have a hard time mingling in the lobby afterwards. It's not that I don't know people, it's a lot better than a couple years ago, it's just hard for me to walk up to someone and start a conversation. Case in point: I'm sitting up in my hotel room blogging instead of eating downstairs with all the other pastors.

Right before the service last night I was talking to some people and a guy walked by that I just knew that I knew from school, but because I wasn't positive what his name was I didn't talk to him until Tiffanney prompted me to after the service. Turns out that we had a pretty good conversation once I worked up the nerve to talk to him.

After the service we went out to eat at Red Robin. Everyone from the conference went to Red Robin. My Senior Pastor knows everyone, so he introduced me to people, but it was a little awkward. When our meal was finished as we were walking out we saw Jeremy Johnson in the lobby, and (since my Sr Pastor knows everyone)we went over to talk to him. As I was getting ready to introduce myself he looks at me and says "Jeff... Graham, right?" I was pretty amazed. He asked me how things were going and all I could squeak out was "I'm reading your book right now." That's it. No profound words of wisdom. He joked about how there were some things he would have liked to change, and then he started talking to Bekah and I didn't get to talk to him again. But it was fun that he knew who I was.

I debated whether or not to write this because I know there's a good chance that he will read this blog at some point and I didn't want to seem pathetic. Do I seem that way? You can send me a comment and let me know. Also, Jeremy, if you're reading this, please send us some words of wisdom, so people know that I'm not making this up.

-Jeff-

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Proud Daddy Post

I'm a big proponent of giving kids an allowance. Since Kadin was 3 we've been giving him money weekly as an incentive to do chores, but mostly to teach him how to handle the stuff. Studies tell us that most Americans are in debt. They've never been taught to manage money (or at least not in a way they understood) and so once they get a job and a couple credit cards everything goes south. I don't want my kids to be like that. I want them to understand that if they don't have money they can't spend it, so two years ago we decided to give them an allowance. Here's what they've learned by having an allowance:
  • You can't spend what you don't have (at the store they will ask for candy, if they have money they can get some, if not they can't).
  • If you save your money you can buy better stuff (more on this later)
  • They've learned to tithe (the first 10% goes to God)
  • They learned to pay bills (after you tithe you pay Mom back for the hot chocolate she bought you, before you spend anymore money)
  • How to count money (Kadin used to take his out and play with it, but it's stored away so it doesn't get lost).
  • I'm starting to work with Kadin on budgeting, writing down what you're going to spend, on paper, on purpose (in 15 years this should be second nature for him).
Two months ago Kadin decided that he wanted a Nintendo DS. I told him he would need to save up for a lot of weeks to earn enough to buy one. I didn't really think he was serious, but he proved me wrong. That next week we went to an espresso stand and usually Kadin would buy himself hot chocolate, but he decided not to because he was saving for a DS. Then we went to the store, where he would usually buy himself some cookies as a snack, but he decided not to because he was saving for a DS. By this point we were so proud of him, because he was forgoing temporary pleasure for a more meaningful reward, we decided to double the money he saved towards a DS. Easter came and Kadin managed to get $10 (there was money inside some of the eggs). Then came several more weeks of putting off snacks to save money, and about a week ago he had saved $40. We got online to see about getting a used DS, we found one that came with $50 worth of games that was selling for $130, so he bought it and we payed our part plus the difference for the games. Here is the end result:

Kadin is now the proud owner of an Onyx black DS, but more importantly he has learned a skill that will serve him the rest of his life. $5 a week seems cheap compared to lessons like that.

-Jeff-

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Tools I use in Ministry pt3: Pinnacle Dazzle




Last time I posted about how I display powerpoint on a tv during youth group, today I want to talk about one way to get video files onto your computer in the first place. Have you ever wondered how clips from sporting events or tv shows end up on Youtube? For a long time I did. I have satellite tv, a DVR and a DVD burner, but I still couldn't get videos onto my computer that were editable. Enter the Dazzle from Pinnacle:

This handy device allows you to plug RCA cables into your computer via a USB port. Therefore I can now take things saved to my DVR and transfer them to my computer, edit them and then show them as I feel like it. Here is a video that I edited using this process:



There are enormous possibilities with something like this, here's a short list of the ways I've made use of it:

  1. Video Advertisements
  2. For showing funny clips during church
  3. Capturing video from a camera that doesn't have firewire
  4. transferring VHS movies to DVD
A great product and a good value, it has saved me several times when I couldn't think of a clever video on my own.

-Jeff-

April Fools!!!

There are some very funny things going around the internet today, and I thought I'd make you aware of some of them. LifeHacker did a story(featuring Google Blogoscoped) compiling all of the things Google is doing for this special day, here are some of my favs:

  1. Google Book search is reporting that they now support scratch and sniff books. According to them: "Using special equipment and tricky JavaScript, we’re now able to capture some of the smells during the scanning process and then embed them in your web browser when you preview these titles in Google Book Search."
  2. Google Australia has discovered a way to index pages on the internet before they are even created. As the LifeHacker guys joked: "I saw this yesterday already and tried to search for “Google Blogoscoped” and indeed, found this post and opened its Google Cache version – I was then able to copy the full text of the post, which saved me a lot of writing today."
  3. I loved this idea from Search Engine Land, which reports that rather than buying Yahoo for 39 billion dollars, Microsoft is going to pay everyone in America 1 million dollars a year to not use Google. It saves them money AND makes me rich. Everyone wins.
And from around the rest of the internet, here are some blogs that caught me off guard today:
  1. Josh from Morethandodgeball.com is reporting that he is moving to Dubai, having triplets and that Saddleback Community Church is opening 6 international campuses. And you all laughed when I said that Saddleback is taking over the world...
  2. LaShawn Barber says that she has outsourced her blogging for the last year, which is supposed to explain her unnatural obsession with Hanson (my ghostwriter made me do it!).
  3. And lastly, if you're looking for a good computer prank to play on all those unsuspecting people in your life, here is a website that lists some good ones. My favs were the clippy trick where that annoying paperclip guy from MS Office appears randomly and spouts out nonsense, and the one where no matter what you do your mouse tracks up and to the left.
Happy April Fools Day everyone, I hope some of these made you smile, I know they did for me!
-Jeff-

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter Eggstravaganza Video

Here is a short video I made from our Easter Egg Hunt.



-Jeff-

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Tools I use in Ministry pt2: PC to Video EZ



Back in January I had every intention of making this a continuing series, but with a pastoral transition and a few other things cropping up, it just hasn't happened. Well, I'm gonna rectify that problem right now. So, without any further ado, here's tool number two1.

PC to Video EZ
If you are blessed to have your own room to decorate and minister to students in at your church, rejoice! We are, and I love not having to set things up every week. However, in order to get in there, we had to give up all the cool toys the sanctuary has to offer. One of those that was sorely missed was the video projector. We love doing powerpoint to help reinforce the messages but normal tv's don't have VGA inputs. Then I discovered this nifty little device:
All you do is plug a VGA cable in and it converts it to RCA or S-video. It works great for smaller youth rooms where a projector just isn't practical. If you're in that situation, you can pick one of these up by clicking the link here: http://store.grandtec.com/ultimateez.html It retails for $49.99 and is well worth the cost.

1Hey, I'm a poet and I didn't even think about it very much (HaHa).

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Do our words matter?


I found this interesting article and I'm interested to get your take on it. Click here to read the article, then you can read my comments below.

Being a youth pastor, I know students have learned to censor their language when their around me. Also I spend a lot of my time working with Christian students at church, which isn't an atmosphere conducive to swearing (although Tiffanney would tell you she learned to swear in a church youth group). I have noticed a lot more hateful language coming from our teens. Even words said in jest are powerful, and we have to be careful with the words we choose. One girl in our group constantly is saying "I hate you." And I know she means for it to be funny, but the bible says that life and death are in the power of the tongue, and words like those can be easily misunderstood. You have to be cautious when you throw around words like that, because the words you speak go on forever. Words can be powerful weapons, we need to treat them as such.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Too much stuff going on!

Hey everyone, I know I haven't posted alot lately, but hopefully that will be changing in the next couple weeks and I'll get back into a Tuesday-Thursday schedule. I needed to take a break though and thought I'd throw out a few updates and thoughts that won't make up a whole blog by themselves:

  • We have a new Senior Pastor coming in! I talked with him today for about a half an hour on the phone and he seems like a great guy. I can't wait to really sit down with him and hear about his vision for the church and the community. It's fun to have a new infusion of vision.
  • That means, I don't have to be the Interim anymore! And Tuesday can't come soon enough! Then I get to go back to just being the youth pastor!
  • When I met him he started asking me questions about our house and everything that happened here. It confused me how he knew so much about my life until he admitted to reading my blog.
  • Tiff and I went up to her Grandma's house this last Sunday - Tuesday. Her Grandma had open heart surgery to replace one of the valves in her heart and needed someone to help for a couple days. I spent a lot of time with Tiff's grandpa who has Alzheimer's. It was really tough to deal with him, not because he was mean or frustrating, but because everytime he asked where we were going I wanted to cry. He is so confused and just not with it anymore. He's started getting the shakes too. I pray that God takes him home quickly.
Well, those are my thoughts for now, time to get back to work.

-Jeff-

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Valentine's Day Fun

Hey Everyone,

Today is Valentine's Day and I thought I'd share with you what I'm doing for my wife this year. I hid 25 kids v-day cards around the house and each one had one letter of a message on it. After collecting all the cards she is supposed to check her e-mail, get her comment on Myspace and then figure out that if she clicks the picture it'll bring her here. If you haven't planned anything yet you might be too late for this year, but feel free to steal my idea for next year.

-Jeff-






Hey Sunshine,

This is the last stop on your journey, I hope you've had fun with it. I love you sooooooo much. You are a phenomenal woman, a fantastic mom, and you're such a good cook that I can't stop eating even when I know I should. I can't wait to go out tonight, it's gonna be such a blast! Call me when you get this.

-Jeff-

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Through God's Eyes

This is an incredibly inspiring blog posted by one of my youth leaders who's only been saved a couple of years. I think all of us need to learn to look at ourselves through God's eyes.


Through Gods Eyes

I know that sometimes people have a hard time feeling good about themselves, so this is something I think may be helpful...I guess I'll start by saying we've all made ''bad choices'', we've all done something that we look at and just wonder....why? After we feel like we have made a huge mistake we begin to judge ourselves, put ourselves down, and believe we are a failure. The problem with that is, that you are not seeing the whole picture. You need to stop looking at yourself through your own eyes. Now I know some of you are probabley thinking...well duh! Isnt that the only way I can look at myself? No. You can look at yourself through Gods eyes. That means that rather then going by how you see yourself, go by how God sees you. I guarantee he dosent look at you and see a failure. He already knew you were going to make mistakes, but Jesus kinda took care of that :) God looks at you and sees someone that he loves soooooo much, and someone he has an amazing plan for. You know, God has a plan just for you...and he wouldnt have givin it to you werent capeable of doing it! So never let your opinion of you get in the way of Gods plans. Next time you feel down, just remember that God sees who you really are....and he thinks your amazing!!!

*If your from my church and your reading this, you should get one of thoes forms in the youth room that tells you who you are in Christ, it will really encourage you!!! Love you guys!!!


What a great post from an amazing woman of God.

-Jeff-

Monday, February 11, 2008

Can Huckabee score with Texas?

Mike Huckabee has been my favorite candidate from the start, but this video puts him over the top in my vote. Please, if you live in a state that has a less confusing system than Washington, figure out how to vote for Mike. If you live in Washington, your vote may or may not count anyway, depending on your preferred style of voting. Seriously, we may be becoming the new Florida up here, I'm so confused my head may explode. I see that Huckabee is challenging the caucuses, but I didn't think they counted anyway. Whatever, on to the video:



Thanks to Josh from morethandodgeball.com for this video.

-Jeff-

Thursday, January 24, 2008

I guess I'm a raging liberal now


Well, it's true, I've gone over to the darkside and there's no coming back. Thanks to Judy Rich for blogging about this survey, I found it's results both interesting and disturbing at the same time. It appears that I have the most things in common with Hillary, but some of the things I agree with her on I don't consider very important. So now I'm stuck and don't know what to do. I think the big issue that I agree with her on is Universal Health Care. I think that when I marked that down I probably pushed her over the top. Here are the results of my test and a link so you can take it yourself. Let me know how you score!

Below are the candidates ranked by how much you agree with their stances.



Hillary Clinton
Score: 34
Agree
Immigration
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Line-Item Veto
Energy
Gun Control
Environment
Education
Disagree
Iraq
Taxes
Abortion
Social Security
Marriage
Death Penalty

Barack Obama
Score: 29
Video
Agree
Immigration
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Line-Item Veto
Energy
Gun Control
Environment
Disagree
Iraq
Taxes
Abortion
Social Security
Marriage
Death Penalty
Education

John McCain
Score: 29
Agree
Iraq
Immigration
Taxes
Abortion
Social Security
Disagree
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Line-Item Veto
Energy
Marriage
Death Penalty
Gun Control
Environment
Education

Mike Gravel
Score: 28
Agree
Immigration
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Death Penalty
Gun Control
Environment
Disagree
Iraq
Taxes
Abortion
Social Security
Line-Item Veto
Energy
Marriage
Education

Mitt Romney
Score: 28
Agree
Iraq
Taxes
Stem-Cell Research
Abortion
Energy
Marriage
Disagree
Immigration
Health Care
Social Security
Line-Item Veto
Death Penalty
Gun Control
Environment
Education

Dennis Kucinich
Score: 27
Agree
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Line-Item Veto
Energy
Death Penalty
Gun Control
Environment
Disagree
Iraq
Immigration
Taxes
Abortion
Social Security
Marriage
Education

Rudy Giuliani
Score: 22
Agree
Iraq
Taxes
Stem-Cell Research
Social Security
Line-Item Veto
Energy
Disagree
Immigration
Health Care
Abortion
Marriage
Death Penalty
Gun Control
Environment
Education

Ron Paul
Score: 20
Agree
Taxes
Abortion
Line-Item Veto
Death Penalty
Disagree
Iraq
Immigration
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Social Security
Energy
Marriage
Gun Control
Environment
Education

Mike Huckabee
Score: 19
Video
Agree
Abortion
Social Security
Marriage
Disagree
Iraq
Immigration
Taxes
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Line-Item Veto
Energy
Death Penalty
Gun Control
Environment
Education

John Edwards
Score: 14
Video
Agree
Stem-Cell Research
Health Care
Energy
Education
Disagree
Iraq
Immigration
Taxes
Abortion
Social Security
Line-Item Veto
Marriage
Death Penalty
Gun Control
Environment

Take the Quiz!

-Jeff-