Adolescence: A Season of Pressure

Doug FieldsAuthor of Intentional Parenting

On the outside, most young people seem happy-go-lucky, but inside each adolescent is a complex network of potentially explosive pressures. Adolescents with a strong parental and social support system are the least likely to experience the painful effects of the pressures they face. When parents become aware of the typical sources of pressure that kids face, they are better able to provide their kids encouragement and support. Here are five common pressures adolescents face:

1. The Pressure to be Perfect.
Teens repeatedly talk about their parents wanting them to be perfect, particularly in in the areas of behavior and school. No kid is perfect and when they fall short of their parents’ expectations, they feel more pressure.

2. The Pressure to Succeed.

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Parent Cue Road Signs Series

Have you thought about the path your family is taking?  What direction would you like to REALLY GO, but don’t seem to know how?  Proverbs helps us take our intentions and give direction to the destination by first “pondering the path.”

Proverbs Chapter 4

25 Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you.
26 Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure.
27 Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil.

FAMILY EXPERIENCE

What kind of family do you want to be? What shared experiences do you want to have? What kind of legacy do you want to leave? This month, think about one goal, one destination, you want to reach as a family. Maybe you want to become more environmentally conscious. Maybe you want to serve others. Maybe you want to feel closer to each other. When you decide on your destination, then you can make a road map for getting there. Here are just a few questions to help you start planning your journey.

 

  1. What is your biggest obstacle in taking the first step? Everyone has some reason why you can’t do something. Find out what that big fear or reason is, and determine what is the best way to push through that roadblock.

 

  1. Is there something you need to stop doing in order to free up time to get to your chosen destination? For example, if you want to grow closer as a family, what time do you need to carve out of your schedule to spend time together on a consistent basis?

 

  1. Are there tools or materials you need in order to equip you for the path? For example, if you want to become more environmentally conscious, do you need to clean up the garage to setup a recycling center? Do you need to find a drop-off center for recyclable items near your home? Do you need to make a trip to your local home improvement store to make your home more “green”?

 

  1. What organizations can you contact or information can you research to help you prepare? As a family, if your goal is to start eating healthier, can you all take a cooking class to learn how to prepare more nutritious meals? Is there information you can find online about the nutritional information of foods at your favorite restaurants?

 

  1. What kind of mile markers and guardrails can you setup to make sure you stay on course for the long run? There will be times when things get too hard or when the family gets off track, so beforehand, develop a plan to keep everyone accountable and help get things back on course.

Are YOUR FEET BEAUTIFUL?

When I was in High School, something happened. At some point in my many High School adventures I slashed my left foot, right between the big toe and the second toe.  At the time, it must not have been major, because I don’t really remember what I did and didn’t even apply any medication to it.  I just left it to heal on it’s own.  Needless to say, this place on my foot eventually developed into a cyst that looked like I was creating my own little skin foothill to say the least.  Days turned to months, months turned into years, and I learned to live with this little bump on my left foot, but NEVER liked to show it off.  The great thing about socks and shoes in our society is that I didn’t have to really worry about anything until summer time rolled around.  Oh yea… Summer!  You know the time where you go barefoot and wear your flip flops or chacos or sandals and SHOW OFF YOUR FEET.  You get the picture.  I didn’t think my feet were up to par and really never thought my feet could ever be BEAUTIFUL.  (Hey, I’m a guy, so don’t just tell me to go get a pedicure and be done, girls.  I am sure that if I did consider something like a pedicure, that the lady person would have taken one look at my feet and bursted out in some sort of horrible scream, like the wicked witch of the East did in the Wizard of Oz.)

In a world of feet and stinkiness, I realize that maybe there are some of you out there with me.  You don’t like your feet.  They stink.  They are ugly in some way, and most of all, they CANNOT be BEAUTIFUL.  Lets face it, if there were some chart out there on the interwebs, the value for feet in this world would probably be really low compared to the value for, let’s just say, your eyes.

In conclusion, I realized that my feet were not beautiful and many others did not really have a high value for feet as well.

This is a problem.  When Paul starts talking in Romans about feet.  He uses the word beautiful in the same sentence as feet.  So when he talks all about feet, I naturally reject whatever he is about to say.  It’s like I just skim over Romans 10:15 and get to the next part.

HOWEVER,  all my life, I have been missing something that Paul has been saying about the whole foot thing.

Here is what he says…

And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”
Romans 10:15 ESV


I had to get over the foot stuff and really look deeper into what Paul was saying.  He was pointing out something that makes total sense, to put BEAUTIFUL and FEET in the same sentence.

You see, wayyyyyy back in the day, When armies went to battle, those who remained at home waited anxiously to hear of the outcome, because often their destiny was tied to the success or failure of the armies. But they didn’t have telecommunication systems that could rush news instantly from the battlefront back to the local community. So messages were carried by runners.

Here is the main point – It’s not about FEET it’s about GOOD NEWS

IN FACT, in the ancient world it was customary, in some places, that if the messenger brought bad news, he was punished with death. If it was bad news, then, he would be burdened by the news that he was carrying, and fearful of what treatment he might expect. As each city posted lookouts to watch the approaching runners, it became almost a science whereby the lookout could determine whether the messenger was bringing good news or bad news, just by his feet.

To go deeper into history and the intentionality of Paul, there was the legend of Pheidippides.  (Yell out that name and see what reaction you get!!!) This was a soldier that ran from the battlefield at the site of the town of Marathon, Greece, to Athens in 490 B.C.  He ran so fast and so hard that as he delivered the momentous message “Niki!” (“victory”), he collapsed on the spot and died.  You might have guessed, that this why we use the word “Marathon” for that long run thing people do.  In fact, Pheidippides was honored by a 24.85 mile run from Marathon Bridge to Olympic Stadium in Athens during the first modern Olympic games held in 1896 in Greece.

Like Pheidippides, if the messenger was bringing good news of victory, his feet would be flying and he would be kicking up a lot of dust. There would be an exuberance and an enthusiasm in his running form, as he approached the walls of the city. Hence the phrase, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!

You See, It’s not about FEET it’s about GOOD NEWS

So when you are grossed out by stinky feet or huge cysts growing on them, remember that Beautiful Feet are ones of Victory. Oh, and by the way, I eventually got a wife, and told her about the cyst, and she made me better by taking me to the skin Dr. and getting it removed on the operation table in the office, as my two young kids ate their Cheerios and watched their Daddy wrench in pain.  I love my wife!

How about you right now? Do you  have Victorious or Defeated feet when it comes to your walk with Jesus?

 

Wherever your feet go, do they gladly bring the Good News of Jesus Christ?

OR do they bring other news and drag behind you?

 

How can your pursuit of Christ be like Pheidippides?

 

Do you want to go run a Marathon now?  (Me Neither)

How do you prepare for the storm?

Alert!!! Alert!!! The storm is coming!

harvey-1-rt-er-170825_12x5_992In the midst of Hurricane Harvey, we rush to fill up our cars with fuel, we rush to fill up our grocery baskets with dry goods, and we rush to batten down the hatches as winds rage and rains fall.

In the midst of all this rushing around, I was brought back to the imagery that Jesus portrayed in Matthew chapter 7.

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”
Matthew 7:24‭-‬27 ESV

How can we THINK TWICE about all this chaos to prepare for the storm?

The truth is that the rushing winds, the falling rains, and the flood waters impact us all, the wise and the foolish.

However, the wise have been practicing Godly Wisdom, building on the foundation of the words of Jesus, and taking those truths into their daily lives.

We have already seen devestation as the eye of the storm has navigated from the coast to the southern Texas region. Those who decided to prepare a firm foundation still take a hit, but remain useful and even a shelter for others that were pummeled by the storm.

Father, help us to see your vision and walk in your wisdom, so that when the storms come, we can be a witness and shelter to others for your Glory.

 

New 6th Grade Parents

Hey New 6th grade parents!

As Middle School students all over town are posting Class Schedules on Instagram, I know that as a parent, you are trying to get motivated for the new school year.

I just want to let you know that the truth is… IT WILL BE CHAOTIC.  CHANGE always is CHAOTIC, no matter what phase of life we are in.  My hope is that by the POWER OF GOD we can join together on the journey of faith and at least have some CONTROLLED CHAOS.  Isn’t it interesting that in the midst of change and crazy new schedules and registration and whatever may come our way, that we find GOD wanting to do AMAZING things in our lives.  When we can’t possibly do it all on our own, we find that God is looking for us to depend on His strength and wisdom to direct us on the path that will be full of joy and peace as we trust in HIM.

Romans 5:13 Says it this way: May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

UPCOMING EVENTS !!!!

Promotion Sunday, August 27th         

ALL ACCESS Wednesday, August 30th from 6:00pm – 8:00pm @ The Student Pavilion

6th Grade Retreat – October 6-7 @ Camp Eagle

Remind 101 Oakwoodms updates – Tezt Oakwoodnb to 81010

Sign up for the Parent Email List

6th Grade Sign Up 2017-2018

Q What is Fusion? Fusion offers a loving and accepting environment geared for Middle School Students Grades 6-8.  We have events, weekly meetings, and exist to Intentionally Engage Middle School Students by leading them to the heart of the Father.

Q When and Where does Fusion Meet? Fusion Meets Sundays 9:15am in the Student Pavilion.  Wednesdays begin 5:30pm in the Student Pavilion.

Q What happens on Fusion Sundays @ the Student Pavilion? Beginning at  9:15am students have a Shipley doughnut or five, play some fusion tag, worship, talk time, and small group time.  10:30am is dismissal time from break out rooms in the SWC.

Q What happens on Fusion Wednesdays? Starting Wed Sept 6 – 5:30 Pizza and Hang Out  Begins in the Student Pavilion with a mixer and random giveaways.  6pm begins with worship, then talk time. We then break out into small groups.  7:30pm is dismissal time

Q What is All Access? All Access is a foyer event geared for students to invest and invite a friend. The Oakwood Student Ministry, grades 6-12, meet in the New Student Pavilion for a night of high energy worship and a relevant message, challenging students to follow Christ.  6:00pm begins with food and hang time,  then high energy music, a relevant speaker, and response time.  8pm is dismissal time.

Middle School Kick-Off @ Schlitterbahn 4pm to 6pm

Come to Blastenhoff Entrance – Meet up with Brandon and the Middle School Team 4pm

We will break off in groups with Middle School Leaders.

Pick up at 6pm at Blastenhoff Entrance.

Hey Oakwood Families,

If you don’t have a Season Pass and want to join us a the park, check out the Partner Discount Info Below:

For year-round fun at Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts, use the link below to access our Partner Discounts.  Discounts are available for admission, season passes, accommodations and more.  Although Partner Discounts are not currently available for Cabanas, Early-Access and Blast Passes through our Partner Program, they are available on the site for your convenience.

To view the park-specific offers, visit Partner Link listed below and follow the steps listed below.

  • Choose your Park.
  • Select the Item Type you wish to purchase from the Park Landing Page.
  • Enter your Quantities and Follow the Prompts.
  • Add your eTicket Code and Apply Promotion to receive your Partner Discount.
  • Visually Confirm that your Rates have changed.
  • Remember, if your eTicket Code is not entered before check out, you will be charged full price.

Partner Link:           www.schlitterbahn.com/partnerdiscounts

2017 Code:              201700234

Partner Discounts are available online only and require an advance purchase.