During the summer it is so easy to say, “I have nothing to do! I’m so bored.”
So check out this list for some good ideas! Add your own–or have a few friends over and create your own list.
- Gather up a few friends and have a picnic in your backyard.
- Find a place to take a hike and get some cool pics.
- Buy some fashion magazines, pick out a couple of really cute outfits, and try to recreate them for less!
- Bead some bracelets and jewelry.
- Volunteer at the local animal or homeless shelter.
- Clean and ORGANIZE your room?
- Bake some cupcakes and deliver them to friends and family.
- Play some childhood BOARD games like “Sorry,” “Candy-land,” or “Monopoly.”
- Take your dog for a walk.
- Write a letter on stationary to a friend you haven’t spoken to in awhile.
- Do 25 jumping jacks!
- Look through old family scrapbooks, photo books, and yearbooks.
- Make a root beer float.
- Go to the movies with your siblings.
- Go window-shopping with a friend.
- Write a poem.
- Make fresh, homemade lemonade.
- Give your dog a bath.
- Make dinner for your family.
- Baby-sit for a neighbor for free.
- Have a sleepover party and watch scary movies.
- Plan a vacation you want to take next summer.
- Plant flowers in your yard.
- Sign up for a class about something you may like to do one day.
- Have a bubble bath.
- Make a playlist of your favorite songs and title it “The soundtrack of my life.”
- Learn a new sport.
- Splash around in a plastic kiddy pool.
- Buy some crayons and a coloring book.
- Read a book based on a movie you have seen.
- Make a scrapbook of your baby pictures.
- Get a job or an internship.
- Start a diary and write in it everyday.
- Spend the day at the library.
- Draw a self-portrait.
- Make a collage out of old magazines.
- Run around in the sprinklers.
- Go to a museum.
- Go out for lunch with one of your parents.
- Jump in the pool with your clothes on.
- Eat last night’s leftovers for breakfast.
- Learn to sew or knit.
- Invite friends over and have a tea party.
- Swing on the swings at the park.
- Tie-Dye a t-shirt or bed sheets with Kool-Aid!
- Make a smoothie.
- Learn how to define and spell 25 new words from the dictionary.
- Make popsicles in your freezer.
- Put on your headsets and dance.
- Go camping in your backyard!
Proverbs 17:17, “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” (NIV)
Grief is hard. Losing a loved one, a treasured pet, a house, or a cherished dream can slice deep. Even when it doesn’t happen to us, but rather to someone we care about.
Have you ever had your own heart-break as you sat and watched someone else’s splinter and shatter into a thousand pieces? What do you do when that happens?
IDEAS ON HOW TO HELP
- Be there. Offer a shoulder to cry on or wrap your friend in a hug. Oftentimes, this will mean more to them than anything else you could do.
- Pray for them. Never underestimate the power of prayer to impact someone’s life or heal their hurt. You might feel powerless to help them, but you can always, always count on God knowing just how to heal them.
- Meet a need. Walk their dog. Vacuum their house. Take them a meal (or if you are culinary-challenged, choose a restaurant gift card instead). If you drive, offer chaffering services (when someone dies, family members sometimes fly into town and might need rides to the funeral, etc.).
- Send Scripture. Through a tweet, a note on their Facebook wall, or best yet, a card or short letter, tell them you love them and that God loves them.Keep asking. You don’t want to push too much, but when the chaos smooths out and real life resumes, that’s when your friend will need you the most. The pain isn’t squelched after just a week. So ask how they’re doing or if they need anything. Often. It means the world to know you remember.
One of the things I love most about Jesus is that He saw people and never shied away from their pain. Showing compassion can make us feel uncomfortable, but it’s always worth shining Christ’s love into hurting lives.
Dear God, my heart breaks for ______ today. I know they’re going through a rough time and I ask that You heal their hurts and show me what I can do to be a blessing. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Have you ever been going through a hard time and had someone blow you away with kindness?
Write out an encouraging Scripture (Psalms is a treasure trove!) on a pretty note card and mail it to a friend.
Visit this devo at Rad Revolution:
MORE ABOUT RACHELLE
Rachelle Rea keeps a Smile Box full of notes, letters, cards, and tiny trinkets friends have given her that have touched her heart. Another box holds colorful note cards that are perfect for scribbling Scripture on and sending to hurting hearts. A college sophomore, Rachelle coaches gymnastics at her local YMCA.
For more from Rachelle, visit her atwww.rachellerea.com.
teen photo by: David Castillo Dominici
Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength! (Nehemiah 8:10 NLT)
Remember How the Grinch Stole Christmas, one of the fondest Christmas movies there is? The Grinch was miserable, angry, bitter, and determined to make everyone around him the same. He was wrapped up in the affairs of the world and knew nothing of joy. But when the Whos in Whoville got up Christmas morning and celebrated, even though the Grinch had stolen all their gifts and festivities, he realized true joy is found only in your heart.
Right now, the stores are swamped, traffic is thick, bargains are being paraded in front of weary shoppers, money is being depleted that may be needed elsewhere, and many people will spend Christmas in a state of despair and depression. This is one holiday each year that can be filled with awe and merriment, but beleaguered with sadness and pain.
Nehemiah, through opposition and with extreme faith, enlisted the people to rebuild Jerusalem and was able to provide all that they needed. Each group of families repaired a section of the wall until it was complete. After, they celebrated with much merriment. But the people were told to give gifts to those in need so they, too, could join in. Celebration was not to be self-centered; it was to be connected with giving. When we celebrate and give to others, we are strengthened spiritually and filled with the true joy of Jesus.
This Christmas, give tangibly to someone in need—not someone you know, but someone you’d not thought of before. Be like the Grinch, who turned his heart back to the true spirit of the season.
People milled about the room, almost everyone looking like they’d stepped out of a book. Actually, they had. I guessed that people costumes were dressed as a character from their book. Now why hadn’t I worn my costume? Ah well, at least I wasn’t the only one in normal clothes. Even though I wasn’t feeling like I was completely part of the crowd, I was ecstatic to be there at the One Year Adventure Novel summer workshop.
The One Year Adventure Novel (OYAN) workshop was absolutely the most awesome thing I experienced summer 2011. OYAN students are very excited about writing and really fall in love with their characters. That first day at the camp was an exciting way to start with all the people dressed up, talking, laughing, and having fun before the classes even started!
I made several new friends and learned more skills about writing. I’m now better prepared to go out and write good stories and I know whom I want to write for and why.
One of the biggest things that hit me at camp though, was that most of the speakers mentioned the need for more teen Christian fiction. They talked about how most of teen fiction nowadays has fallen far away from God. Most teen fiction is now full of violence and darkness.
After I listened to the speakers, I was so ready to go out and write! I wanted to write something amazing, be published right away, and change lives in the world. I realized that my calling from God is to write for teens; to write stories with God-inspired themes. I realized the amazing gift of story that God has given me.
Story is an amazing way to get our point across. There’s an example of this in the Old Testament of the Bible. After David took Bathsheba as his wife and sent Uriah out to die, Nathan came to David. He didn’t blatantly tell David what he’d done wrong. Instead, Nathan told David an allegorical story about the rich man who took the poor man’s lamb. The story made an impression on David and revealed his sin more clearly than a blatant reprimand would have.
Story has the ability to change lives. Teens need changed lives. They need to hear of the Good News and of Jesus. But, most fiction for teens has become dark and depressing.
God has given me a passion for writing, for story, for fiction, for Him. I want to use the gifts he’s given me in my writing to serve Him.
The camp in itself was not the best part of my summer; consolidating the fact that I’m a writer for God and cultivating my passion for writing were the discoveries that made my summer awesome!
I’m trusting God to use me in the ways He wants. He’s put writing on my heart and I’m going to use it to glorify Him.
Danielle Dodge is thirteen years old. Her top favorite activities are reading and writing although she does enjoy riding horses, ballet, and playing the violin. She’s placed in three contests and written two novellas.
“You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor. (Exodus 20:16 NIV)
“Do not go about spreading slander among your people.” (Leviticus 19:16 NIV)
“But I tell you that men will have to give an account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken.” (Mathew 12:36 NIV)
Tears stream down your face onto your pillow as you lay in bed. “How could they do this?” you think. Pulling out your phone and reading the text again, it hits you: the people you trust most told lies about you behind your back.
This recently happened to me with a close friend in my youth group. We were on a mission trip, but I got sick and had to leave early. When the rest of the group got home, friends of mine were mad at me because of things my friend told them about me. All of the things she said were nowhere close to the truth. My friends wouldn’t hang out with me because of lies that were told.
The Bible specifically says, multiple times, not to lie about your neighbors. If God thought it was important enough to say over and over again, we should listen. Each and every one of us is a loved child of God. Would you want someone going around telling lies about your child and hurting them? Well, God doesn’t either. In fact, Mathew 12:36 says, “But I tell you that men will have to give an account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken.”
Gossip and lies hurt everyone involved, including God. One day we are going to stand before God for judgment. With that in mind, my challenge to you is to not slander one another,, but to love each other as Christ loves.
I’m Haley Faye Snyder. I’m 14 years old and a freshman in high school. I’ve lived in the same Christian home in Kentucky since I was born. I have one little brother and two loving parents. I go to Westport Baptist church and have my whole life. I accepted Christ into my heart when I was six and then re-committed my life to Him when… (read more…)
<<<more posts by Haley…
What is a writer to do with time constraints?
By participating in NaNoWriMo last year, (National Novel Writing Month) I personally learned that I write best when I have a certain goal to accomplish each day. That goal helps me push myself to complete it. Even if I’m too tired or getting discouraged, I know I have a goal in mind and I want to meet it.
Things like NaNoWriMo and signing up for a writing class will help with writing under pressure. In a writing class, the teacher gives you a deadline. If you miss that deadline, you can’t participate in any assignments concerning that piece of writing; deadlines have consequences when not met. You could even assign your own deadlines. Maybe three thousand words in one day or a chapter a week or any other deadline you want to create!
Also, finding a writing buddy helps. Whether you can meet in person or just online, you and your buddy can make personal goals and then discuss each day (or week, or whatever you choose) how you accomplished that goal. Meanwhile, you can discuss ideas, encourage each other, and find support in knowing that someone is working with you.
The best option, in my opinion, is a class in which you’ll lose percentage points if you turn in an assignment late. I’ve taken classes through my local community college. Search around where you live; you might find a good program.
Once again, it’s entirely your decision what to do. I’ve provided some examples that have worked for me and hope that other writers will find something useful from them.
Visit the Nation Novel Writing Website: http://www.nanowrimo.org/
I am first and foremost a Scribe of the King. It is my desire to serve God through the written word. I have been creating stories since age three. I would tell them to entertain my family, but didn’t start writing them down until age eight or nine.
Since then, the need to write has been insatiable. At age nineteen, I had my first book, Where’s My Other Sock?, published by Tate Publishing. Then, I graduated from community college with a degree; not in anything writing related, but in accounting. Currently, I’m hunting for a bookkeeping job and working on several books or story ideas. In my stories, I challenge the reader’s imagination with adventures into the fantasy realm. Some stories lean towards mystery/suspense or general fiction, and I try to write for all ages. I find my inspiration from JRR Tolkien’s works and from the Randomness of everyday life.
SDG. (read more…)
Ya know, being a kid in high school and at the same time being a Christian in high school, is not easy. So what are Christian students supposed to do? Remain a Christian and pretend it’s not a serious thing? Just act natural? Or should we stick to our little youth group in church and forget the lost sinners who wander the high school hallways? They deserve what they get anyway, right?
In Matthew 28:19, Jesus tells us to go and make disciples of all nations. Sometimes I have to wonder if we, as teenage kids, take this to heart. When Jesus said go and make disciples of all nations he really meant everybody. And, yes, that includes the geek next door and your mean math teacher. The problem with kids in high school (and most people, now that I think about it) is we’re not always sure how to approach someone who could easily look down on us.
Nobody wants to be dismissed as a silly kid.
So what can you do? Start with the Bible. Read daily. Set a schedule. Even ten minutes a day is better than none at all.
Excuse: I’m not a very good reader–I don’t like to read.
Answer: Bible on CD. A kid in my youth group downloaded the Bible on to his iPod so that he could get through Genesis. It’s out there, I promise. =)
Once you’re comfortable with talking to someone about the Bible, talk to friends. Tell them that Jesus will save even the worst sinners. You don’t have to be a theological scholar to talk to your friends. Once your friend has accepted Christ as their Savior, bring them to church. Another good place for you to start if you haven’t already.
Get with your youth group. Set something up. A canned food drive. Do a car wash and donate the money. (That’s very effective where I’m from.) Or, if you’re really ambitious, dinners are also a good thing to do for the local residents or your church. (We usually make enchiladas, but not everyone lives in New Mexico.) A problem I had for a while was not having a youth group. I eventually convinced a few of the leaders in our church to start one. We have exactly three regular members and two that come off and on. But even that’s not bad compared to absolutely nothing at all.
Did you know there are organizations in school you can join that are specifically for Christian students? (Or better yet–students who are not Christians.) The Fellowship of Christian Athletes is a popular one. I’ve joined it and our group currently consists of five kids. And none of us do sports. (I know. Ha-ha.) Or if you don’t have school organizations, make one. You’re the boss! Whatever comes to mind would be a good idea. Even if it’s small.
The sky is the limit.
Son to a farmer, 16 year old Blake lives in rural New Mexico with his parents, two sisters and a brother where they raise cattle, wheat and 4H livestock. He can drive a combine, pull a plow and milk a goat! Blake is a veracious reader: Done with homework? Read a book. Free class time? Read a book. Road trip? Read a book! When he’s not reading, Blake is a very active leader in his school and community where he is President of his 4H club, a member of FFA, BPA, FCA, Student Council, FCCLA (in which he competed at a national level) and, his favorite–journalism. (read more…)
“Let the little children come to me…for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” (Mark 10:14 NIV)
We only knew each other for about five minutes, but we were already best friends. The only communication we had was my asking her what her name was and she responded with a twenty-five syllable name in Spanish that I could not repeat back to you if I tried. All I did was blow some bubbles for her and read her a book, but those simple gifts of kindness meant the world.
After we played, she crawled up in my lap and just sat there. I held her and loved her as she snuggled in my lap.
I am so thankful for my little friend, even though I do not know her name or speak her language. She taught me about faith. As I held her quietly in my arms, I thought about Jesus when He said, “Let the little children come to me…for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” (Mark 10:14 NIV)
I want to have faith like that little girl, a faith that is simple, joyful, and trusting. I desire to love God unconditionally and come to Him without reservation. I want to crawl up in the lap of my Lord, trusting Him even when I do not understand Him. I know that He loves me, so I love Him in return. After all, that is all that faith really is – the willingness to lean into the arms of the Lord and rest awhile, knowing that He is holding you and loving you securely.
Thought for the day: God is always available for you to run to Him and rest in His arms.
Ashli Roussel, a nineteen-year-old sophomore at Harding University, is passionate about sharing the truth and love of the Lord through writing. She loves camping, running, playing the piano, and participating in missions. Most of all, she is passionate about knowing, following, and serving her Lord and Savior. Without Him, her stories would mean nothing.
Ashli has battled and overcome an eating disorder, which God used to teach her great truths about who He is and how He is involved in our struggles. Now she desires to comfort others with the comfort that she has received from God. Keep an eye out for Ashli’s regular articles on iBegat.com! (read more…)
The newspaper headline said, “Get your teen’s attention when teaching the dangers of distracted driving” but after I read the article, I knew it was for ALL drivers–teens and adults. The author stated that there are three types of distractions for teen drivers; visual–actions that require you to take your eyes off the road, manual–actions that require you to take your hands off the steering wheel, and cognitive–actions that take your mind off driving. These apply to adults too. So make a pact with your parents or adult mentors to keep each other accountable to follow the rules below.
Here are ten tips to read and share with ALL the drivers in your life.
- Keep both hands on the steering wheel and eyes on the road. (use your mirrors) My husband always told me to hold the steering wheel at ten o’clock and two o’clock.
- Avoid cell phone use–Cell phones are the number one distraction for teenage drivers. Cell phone use falls under the category of visual, manual, and cognitive distractions. Mobile technology has made texting, surfing the web, and social networking too assessable.
- Don’t use your phone for anything at all. Pull over when it is safe and be sure it is somewhere you can park.
- Do not eat and drink while driving.
- Do not have lengthy or involved discussions with passengers.
- Do not apply makeup, work on your hair, or try to arrange clothing.
- Do not read–including PDA’s and GPS units.
- Do not search for directions on a map.
- Never watch a video.
- Do not change the radio station, CD, or MP3 player.