The study of James for youth is now available to download. It is our first released youth study ever. I cannot tell you how excited I am to see the youth impacted by the Disciplers Bible Studies. Two years ago, my children, their grandmas, and I sat down in my living room once a week to discuss the book of Acts. We used the Disciplers adult lessons and Gram (Suzie) graciously rewrote questions for the grandkids to use. Each week we would take turns leading the study. It was a very special time. My son with dyslexia (who dreaded reading) was always eager to read from God's word. The older siblings had a great time poking fun at incomplete answers, often time their own. We grew not only in our knowledge of God, but also in our relationships to one another. God's word is more than a common bond. It is like crazy glue that sticks you together forever!
Half way through the school year, I began to have a strong and overwhelming desire to share all that we were learning with the youth at my church. I longed for the friends of my children and their siblings to receive the same blessing my children were experiencing. When I mentioned it to Suzie, she was in complete agreement. So, she and I began to pray.
In the fall of 2012, the first ever Bible classes featuring Disciplers Bible Studies for youth launched. There were two classes: 4th-7th and 8th-12th. There was approximately 15-20 students between the two classes. Suzie led the upper grade class, while I led the lower grade class. It was amazing! Everything I had hoped for and more. I was blessed to see the understanding with which the Lord gave the students. There are no words to describe the joy I received from watching the children grow in their knowledge of God.
This school year, the classes filled up in two weeks! So, I added another class. Two weeks before classes started in September, I added two more classes. This school year, we have FIVE classes and nearly FIFTY students studying the book of James and Judges/Ruth. God has blessed the youth studies abundantly! Suzie moved away over the summer, so she is no longer leading a class. However, she continues to be a crucial part of developing the youth ministry. I also stepped down from leading a class so that I can devote more time to writing and developing the youth lessons. I am working close with the five leaders, and I also rotate sitting in on the classes. The leaders and I meet to pray for the students and discuss the lessons after class. Often times, I am brought to tears of joy during our fellowship.
As the mother of five children, I think about the future often. At times, I battle being discouraged. The world's wisdom calls out to children from every direction: television, radio, internet, and ads, to name a few. A popular radio song right now is entitled, 'Blurred Lines.' I have watched Christian teens sing the lyrics to this song on several occasions this year. To me, it represents the desperate need our youth has. Many are trying to be 'good girls' and boys while surrounded by a world that wants only to make their vision blurry. Only God's word can protect their eyesight. It is in His word that they will learn to resist the devil and draw near to God. The apostle Paul quotes Isaiah saying, Come out from among them and be separate, says the Lord, do not touch what is unclean, and I will receive you (2 Corinthians 6:17).
I hope you will be blessed by the opportunity to study the book of James along side your children. Perhaps the Lord will lead you to organize a group study for youth, as He did me. Either way, I pray that the Holy Spirit will be with you and that you will increase in the wisdom and knowledge of God.
In Him, who is my strength, Marchelle
I have been involved in Disciplers since 1987, as a discussion leader, teacher, writer, and now as director. I am profoundly committed to the stewardship of this ministry which God has entrusted to me for a time. God’s word is the chief joy of my life. I cherish my personal time in the word, and I am filled with gratitude to be able to share His word with you, my fellow disciples in Christ.