First Third Conversations

Stewardship as a paradigm for Youth Ministry?

  This article was originally published on 5/21/2013 on FirstThird.org.

The night before taking my first group of young people to camp as a rookie youth director, I became consumed by a desire to purchase a pair of brightly colored sneakers.  Feeling like I was on a game show to find the perfect pair of sneakers before the store closed, I finally landed on a pair of electric blueberry cross-trainers.  They were awesome – just like the ones I had seen on countless 11 to 14

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Intro to November's Theme: Stewardship

StewardshipA blog post by Terri Elton

It is November, a month set aside for giving thanks. What a great practice that is. Pausing and giving thanks is something we can't do enough. As you make your way toward Thanksgiving I encourage you to fully participate in this season's rituals. But our focus for this month is going to be on something deeper and wider than giving thanks. Our focus is going to be on the question, what is it to be a steward?

As we take a look at the word steward, we get a glimpse what

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Halloween Post: Is teaching kids about money too scary? - by Rev. Tim Coltvet

Pumpkin cousins

This article was originally posted on 10/20/2011. If you didn't catch it then, we hope you enjoy its message anew!

Dorothy C. Bass and Craig Dykstra once unpacked the meaning of Christian practices. They write: "By Christian practices we mean things Christian people do together over time to address fundamental human needs in response to and in the light of God's active presence for the life of the world. Thinking of a way of life as made up of a constitutive set of practices breaks a way of life

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Time – Do you spend or invest?

By Dr. Terri Martinson Elton, Director of the Center for First Third Ministry at Luther Seminary

This past weekend was homecoming at the high school. Daughter #2 was excited about going to the dance, but a few weeks ago discovered her tennis team had an all-day tournament on the same day and, to complicate matters, it was over an hour away. Needless to say, both mom and dad were needed to make the day come together.

This past Monday Daughter #1 called from college. She was getting everything in

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Kids and Money with Carrie Carroll

Carrie Carroll, Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment at Luther Seminary, talks about kids and money.

(This video was developed in collaboration with Luther Seminary's Center for Stewardship Leaders.)

related link:

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Timeonomics - Part 2: Time Stealers

[Part 2 in a series. See also Timeonomics, Part 1: Quitting Church]

Roland Martinson, academic dean of Luther Seminary and long-time expert in children, youth and family ministry, discusses the challenges that families face when it comes to devoting time to each other and to church.

Martinson shares tips on how to make time for reflection within families and in the church community, and discusses how the stewardship of time demands our greatest efforts as stewardship leaders in today's church.

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Caught in the Current - by Terri Elton

Flowing river 3 by Ernst Vikne, on Flickr

I don't know about you, but as a family with children in school, this time of the year I get caught in the current.

Our family tries hard to be intentional about how we spend our time, who we spend our time with and what commitments we take on all year long, but this time of year it never works.

The annual transition from summer to fall feels like someone else takes over the reins at our house for about six weeks:

  • Those dinners we were going to have together were eaten on the run.
  • That weekly
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Timeonomics - Part 1: Quitting Church

Roland Martinson, academic dean of Luther Seminary and long-time expert in children, youth and family ministry, invites you into a story of encountering a man who has decided -- with his family -- to quit church!

Martinson helps to tease out valuable lessons about how the stewardship of time demands our greatest efforts as stewardship leaders in today's church.

(This video was developed in collaboration with Luther Seminary's Center for Stewardship Leaders.)

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Stewarding God's Gift of Time by Tim Coltvet

Probably one of the finest lessons taught to me about time came from a wise and learned friend from Tanzania.

Clock

As a part of our growing congregational partnership, we were able to spend time together as ordinary people learning from one another and listening deeply to what the other had to share.

"You see, Pastor Tim" he would say, "in America you have watches, but in Tanzania we have time!"

Implicit in his message was a critique of what he was seeing here in America -- busy people with

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Stewarding the Strengths of Children and Youth

A strengths-based journey focuses on fulfilling the calling for which you are uniquely equipped. In turn, that contributes to the fulfillment of God's calling for the church as a whole and for the sake of the other and the world.

Trinity Lutheran in Stillwater, Minn. has been discovering strengths with their children and youth as they seek to steward the gifts that God has given.

(This video was developed in collaboration with Luther Seminary's Center for Stewardship Leaders.)

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