3 ways to keep the flame bright

Hey young people!!

Keep-the-Fire-GoingBy now most of you are back to school and in a normal routine. I want to wish each and every one of you a great school year! As I have also returned to school myself there is one question I keep asking: how do I keep the fire or the “camp high” going?

Seth-and-jamesPersonally, it’s very easy to get busy with schoolwork + friends that I slowly but surely allow my flame to dwindle. When you don’t spend every day in an atmosphere where you are constantly surrounded by fellow Christians who want the same exact thing as you, it is easy to allow your flame from camp to be extinguished.

If this is you right now, does it make you any less of a Christian? Absolutely, NOT!! Jesus loves you right where you are at this very second. He doesn’t love some future or better version of yourself more than He loves you now. Jesus loves you as if you were the only person He created. The crazy thing is that He does that for ALL of us.

Keep-your-Flame-BurningSo with that in mind I want to offer 3 ways to help keep your flame burning bright for Jesus.

5-stones-Middle-schoolers-at-Whisper-Mountain1)   Community - Community in the Christian life is vital. When God made Adam he saw he was lonely and needed a companion so he created Eve. We were made for companionship and community!! Otherwise, God would have left Adam to hang out with all the animals.

Girls-crowdIf you are not in a small group or some sort of gathering where you can go and just do life with other people, I would personally offer that you find one. If there isn’t one at your church and you want this, you can always start your own! Go for it!! God loves when His people gather together to talk about life and Him.

2)   Listen to the Word - If you go to church weekly but you find yourself wanting to hear more of the word, that’s GREAT! I like to get Podcasts of some well-known pastors and listen to what they have to say. This is a great tool to utilize.

Hilton-Head-Solo-Time-at-Whisper-Mountain3)   GET in the WordDaily quiet + alone time with God is the most crucial and fundamental part to keep your fire burning bright. Just like you did at camp. It doesn’t mean you have to get up at 4 am and spend 3 hours praying and reading. If 30 minutes is all you can seem to do right now, that’s awesome! I promise you God LOVES those 30 minutes He gets to hang out with His Beloved child. 

I love you all!
In Christ,

Seth McClure

|Author >> Seth| ^^ |Photography >> Jamie + Charley| ^^ |Featured Groups >> 5 Stones Middle School + Hilton Head + Gateway|

how to have less awkward conversations

Conversation-Made-EasierUnless you're a hermit, engaging with people is pretty commonplace. With the school year just about to begin, there are opportunities to meet new people. But let's face it, sometimes striking up a conversation can be pretty awkward.

Hey there, it's Cassi and I asked my man Shaun to team up with me on this post. He's a pro at connecting and striking up a conversation with just about anybody. Here are a few things we came up with to help make conversation easier:

1. Smile. The universal language always makes us warm, approachable and friendly. (and it helps those nerves when approaching someone new!)

2. Remember their name and use it frequently. The small touches are the personal touches. Others feel loved when they are known. The use of their name sends the message home.

3. Ask questions. Finding common ground helps the conversation to progress naturally. Shaun, the king of acronyms, has two ways to help you know just what to ask — the first is good for those outside of your school setting:

        L-ocation. Where are they from?

        O-ccupation. What do they do? 

        V-acation. Fave place to vacation/best vacation?

        E-ducation. Where do/did they go to school? Favorite teacher? etc.

 The second way is good for just about anywhere with anyone:

        F-amily. Do they have brothers/sisters? 

        R-ecreation. What do they like to do for fun?

        O-bessions. What are some of their favorite things?

        M-edia. Seen any good movies? Favorite movie? Favorite music?

4. Show Interest. Really listen and show interest in what the other person is saying. Nothing is more annoying than talking to someone who doesn't really care.

5. Stay Lighthearted. When approaching people it's good to remember they are most likely as worried as you are about what to talk about. Take some pressure off so you can actually enjoy the gift conversation can be. We are made for connecting after all!

Chit Chat is where it's at! Happy Conversating!

Have you found other ways to make conversation a little easier? Let us know in the comments


|Author + Photography >> Cassi| ^^ |Models >> Hope + Melody|

A Teen’s Point of View

Teens-Point-of-View[teen Kinsley (yep, she’s my girl!) shares with us today!]

Going from summer to waking up at six o’clock every morning to go somewhere I’d rather never go again is a hard transition. I mean, when I hear my alarm blaring in the morning, interrupting the best part of my dream, I’m not the happiest person on earth. Then getting home and spending around three and a half hours doing Algebra II homework and praying for the rapture to happen–this is not my ideal day!

Stacks-of-booksBut when all I think about is how tired I am, how much homework I have, how boring this teacher is, how I wish it was still summer life feels very overwhelming. Even though it’s really hard sometimes, I try to make my main focus on God. Some ways I try to do this is spending time in my Bible and talking with God every morning. This helps me try to live out the Bible. When I get to school I feel more ready to show God’s love to someone different every day, whether it’s encouraging them or just talking to them.

Smile-SpoonToday I want to encourage you to try to put your main focus on God because, let me tell you, it helps a lot!