Day 29

Today, write down all the positive experiences and outcomes of your fast up to this point. As you reflect back, notice how often God showed up. Maybe it was a time when you were tempted, and you realized it and walked away. Maybe you told a friend what you were doing and they decided to listen to something else or do something else (that's being authentic AND influential). Whatever it was, realize that it was because the Holy Spirit was alive and working through you or the circumstance.

Of course writing this stuff down and remembering is the easy part... the hard part is sharing what you realized... but today, share it with your parent or significant adult. Tell them what you've learned from this fast... you can also post it on ourthirty but make sure you actually talk to your parent about what you've noticed... you will blow them away.

And remember, God gets all the glory... He's the One who's been holding you together in the first place (remember laminin?).

Read through 1 John 4 today
- What sticks out to you in those verses?
- What do you need to work on in your personal life?

Finally, spend some time praying and thanking God for how He's used this fast in your life...

Day 27

2 of the most difficult things to get straight in life are love and God. More often than not, the mess people make of their lives can be traced to failure of stupidity or meanness in one or both of these areas. Although in our culture, it seems like "love" and "God" are separate, in the Hebrew culture and teachings of Jesus and Apostles, these 2 went hand-in-hand. They state that if we want to deal with God the right way, we have to learn to love the right way. And if we want to love the right way, we need to learn to love God the right way.

John shares how this works throughout the book of 1 John. He realizes that many people want to make up their own ideas of God and love.

As you read today, notice what John is saying about the connection of God and love and how they are more connected than we think.

READ: 1 John 3

Day 26

Take the day to get out. Go to a park. Enjoy the weather and sunshine. Reflect back on the month. What has God taught you about himself and yourself? What would you like your last week on the fast look like? What would be a realistic thing you could continue to build your relationship with God?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Day 24

HOOK: Isn’t it great when you get new clothes? You feel cleaner, newer…perhaps more stylish, and it’s nice! Suddenly wearing the same clothes you’ve been wearing for a long time doesn’t feel the same anymore and you prefer your new ones.

BOOK: Today I want you to read some powerful scriptures God inspired Paul to write about putting off the old, and putting on the new. First read Ephesians 17-32 then Romans 13:8-14.

See if you can fill in these blanks:
In Epheseians it says You were taught…to put off your _____ self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23to be made ______  in the attitude of your minds; 24and to put on the ______ self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

In Romans Paul talks about putting off the deeds of __________ and putting on the armor of __________.

Paul saysRather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.”

TOOK: Sometimes we can fall into the trap of believing that the Bible is full of a bunch of rules we must follow OR ELSE…if we think we can do any of this on our own we will do nothing more than be obsessed with rules and never get anywhere God wants us….the truth is, while God’s standards haven’t changed and we are to strive to be like him, we have this amazing gift called Grace because of Jesus that allows us to put on love and this fulfills all the requirements of God’s law. We put on love by clothing ourselves with Jesus Christ himself…nothing else comes close and nothing else will help you overcome your sinful nature.

Think about how you’re doing with the media fast so far. Are you simply “putting off” secular media and all the while thinking about how badly you wish you could gratify your desires to watch your favorite show or listen to your favorite music? Or are you also “putting on” Christ? It’s not enough to just remove the old clothes, we need to replace them with the new…and that’s Jesus himself. If you don’t put on the new you’ll inevitably dress yourself in the old stinky ones again. How can you clothe yourself with the Lord Jesus today?

Don’t be satisfied with just putting off the old, put on the new--that’s Jesus. Talk to God, read his Word and listen, sing to him, play for him, and be honest with him about how you’re doing and your desires. Ask him to replace your desires with his. Thank Him for who he is and ask him to love the world through you. Go ahead… your new wardrobe is waiting!!

Day 22

We were just waiting in line to have our bags checked. When we were walking towards the lines a security agent told us that one line was only a 22 minute wait while the other would be 35. We proceeded to the 22 minute one along with what seemed like everyone else. The line ended up growing up to the entrance doors. I told Andrew that we shouldn't have believed her. So I timed the wait. Everyone was getting in this line. We finally got to the spot to run our bags through... 25 minutes. I guess she knew better than I did. She works there everyday. I'm just a newcomer.

This got me thinking... What are the things I don't trust that God tells me in His Word?

What do you not trust me when I say the media is effecting your relationship with God?

Today's Reading: 1John 2

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Day 21

So you are almost done with the fast... how are you doing? No really, answer that question... HOW ARE YOU DOING?

That's one of those questions we ask people but do we really want to know. i think sometimes we aren't sure if we want to know how we ourselves are doing. We are our own worst critics.

The past few days, I have spent some time with some high school students (and a few Jr. Highers) in the midwest. And you know what? They are just like everyone else. They laugh. They cry. They make jokes. They have fun. They get tired... but you know what was different... they weren't on the fast. I shared with them how you all were doing this Secular Media fast and they were shocked. In fact, one of the questions they asked me was, "how are they doing?" And that got me to thinking... how are they doing?

And by "how are you doing", I mean that I want to know how is your pursuit of improving your relationship with God going? Are you finding time to spend with Him? Are you getting into the Word? Are you praying? Are you talking about your time with God with your friends?

For the last few days of the fast, you will see some other people's devos but I want to challenge you to get your Bible out and read through the book of 1 John. Take a look at each day's reading. Pick out a verse that sticks out to you. Meditate on it. Write it on a note-card. Post it everywhere you can...


Day 17

So I was reading Philippians 3 today and came across a verse that speaks volumes about this media fast... so I'm giving you an assignment:

Read Philippians 3... the whole thing

Then focus on verses 7-14... what does this mean in regards to the Media Fast, to you? Post what you think on the website...

Day 16

Are still working on memorizing psalm 119:9-11?

Good. Today, let's focus on prayer. But let's do something different. Today, write your prayer out. Then, on the website post a shortened version of it. Keep it brief on the website but spend some solid time praying on your own. Write it out in a prayer journal first. Then share your prayers with your friends and sponsors through the website.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Day 15

How to drift from God.


But I’m afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. 2 Cor. 11:3

19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is the seed sown along the path. 20 The one who received the seed that fell on rocky places is the man who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. 21 But since he has no root, he lasts only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, he quickly falls away. 22 The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful. 23 But the one who received the seed that fell on good soil is the man who hears the word and understands it. He produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown." Matt. 13:19-23

We must pay more careful attention, therefore, to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away. Heb 2:2

O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you,
my body longs for you
Ps 63:1

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding… Prov 3:5

Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character...”  
1 Cor. 15:33

14 but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. James 1:14-15
Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the father is not in him. 1 John 2:15


The Lord says: "These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from meIsa 29:13

I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. Rev 3:1


…You have forsaken your first love. 5 Remember the height from which you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first... Rev 2:4-5

Day 14


Today is the day to relax. Find something to do with friends. Blow off some steam. Make sure you read through Psalm 119:9-11 ten times.

Day 13

Take out your Bible and read any 20 verses from Psalm 119. Then narrow down those verses to one thought.

What is the psalmist trying to say?
What does it mean to you?

Then, read verses 9-11 ten times today.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Day 12

READ: Matthew 4:1-11

RELATE: Today is a day that you will begin to learn one of the most effective tools for overcoming temptation. It's a discipline, that when put into practice daily, can silence any critic. It's a weapon that when used wisely, can cut to the heart of the hardest person. It's a discipline that is the easiest to apply, brings the quickest results, and least used and overlooked. It's like a secret weapon that no one knows about. What is it? Take a moment to think. Make a list of what you think it might be.

RESPOND: OK. You have to use your Bible for this part. Get it out and find Psalm 119:9-11. Read it. Then read it 4 more times. Write it on a card. Then read it 4 more times. You should had read it a total of 10 times now. Place that card in a place where you will see it tomorrow. Read it 10 times again tomorrow. Then do it again the next day. For the next week, read it 10 times a day.

What you are learning is memorizing Scripture. It will change everything if you put it into practice. And it's not difficult. It just takes 1 minute a day.

Day 11

So today is your 4th day of seeking silence. How are you doing? Take the time to read Psalm 1. Keep it simple today and relax.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Day 8

"Everyone needs silence: the teacher, the nurse, the social worker; the artist, the poet, the doctor; the lawyer, the housewife, the cabdriver. To neglect this need is to risk living a tense, fragmented, spiritless life. Formation in Christian living is not confined to monasteries; it is a survival measure in the modern world. If we do not nourish our souls, they atrophy as do bodies without food. To maintain any kind of Christlike presence in the world, we need to seek silence and its fruits in the practices of spiritual reading, meditation, prayer and contemplation" -Pathways to Spiritual Living

READ: Mark 1:35

RELATE: Have you noticed how quiet it is? When was the last time you sat in silence? Ok, maybe you haven't noticed it. Maybe you've filled your time, lately, with Christian music and Christ-centered movies and the Bible. Don't get me wrong, that's all good. But read that quote again. This is not a new thought. Many early Christians have sought places where they could be quiet. In fact, in the Old Testament times, it was believed that if you spent time in silence, you would sense the presence of God. Not that you would hear from Him... but that you would sense Him.

So when was the last time you sensed God? Did you know that there is a monastery only a few hours from San Francisco which, if you stay there, is silent... all the time? No talking. Quiet walking. It's away from the noise and chaos of life... and hundreds of people go there to sense God. If you want to go, you have to book your room a year in advance!

Silence is more about discipline than it is about quietness. To seek silence is thought of to be like seeking God. It's hard to find... difficult through all the noise... but when you find it... you realize how good it is.

And it can't be just a short time of silence... sure you can start with an hour... but to really notice things, you need to do it for a while. Scholars believe that when Jesus goes off to pray, He is actually seeking silence... quietness... stillness. Maybe we need to model Jesus a bit more.

RESPOND: So here's the ultimate challenge this week. Each day we are going to seek silence. Stillness. Quietness. For the week, though, get rid of anything that drowns out God's presence. In fact, don't listen to any kind of music this week. Don't watch any kind of movie. Reading is ok... but avoid noise at all cost. Do whatever you can to not allow noise into your life. A couple students have already started avoiding all media... and they have some interesting perspective. Each day, respond on the journal to your experience in silence. What is it like? What do you like about it? What makes it difficult?

Finally, be ready for tomorrow! Tomorrow you will learn that silence is truly golden!

Day 7

Today is Sunday. It's meant to be a day that we take to spend time with God and rest. Now this may not sound spiritual, but did you know that God wants our bodies rested? Hopefully you take the chance to rest.

Not only should our body be rested, but our minds also. Tomorrow, we will look at a spiritual discipline that may be one of the toughest in our current culture. But for today, thank God for the rest and pray for strength for the upcoming week... It's going to be a real challenge.

Read through Psalm 23. What all does the shepherd provide for the sheep? (hint: on of them is rest).

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Day 5

Did you have meat today?

I'm sure you can guess where today's devotional is going?

READ: Hebrews 5:12-14

RELATE: So look at those verses again. Start this time in verse 11... have you ever felt like what was being talked about in church or in youth group was a bit over your head? In verse 11, the writer of Hebrews says that some things are hard to explain because people have become dull of hearing. Now that may not be you... but doesn't it seem harder to keep focused and excited about something when you've heard it over and over? You grow tired of hearing it... it becomes dull. So what does the writer of Hebrews say you should do? BECOME TEACHERS.

If you had the opportunity to teach your peers something about God... maybe share your testimony, what would you teach them? Talk to me about leading a thought or sharing a testimony...

What's funny is that many people use this verse to bring up "preaching styles".. but what this is actually talking about is what YOU do with what you learn. If you're tired of "milk"... maybe it's time you stepped up to the "big leagues" and began to teach others what you know... maybe it's time for your "meat"...

If it will help, I'll help you "cut it up" (meaning that I'll help you put it together, too!) Just let me know and I'll give you the chance to teach something... I promise, it will impact you spiritually!

RESPOND: Ask someone these questions. See what they think? Maybe have a little survey. What do I consider to be spiritual "milk"? What is spiritual "meat"? Do I need "milk" or "meat"?

Day 3

READ: Hebrews 12:1-2

RELATE: When I was in my last year of High School and into my first couple years in college, I wore glasses. At night, I would have to squint to be able to read a sign. For some reason, my eyes wouldn't focus enough for me to see. It's not that I had bad vision... it's just that my vision wasn't as clear when there wasn't enough light.

During a men's softball game, I cranked a hit to the outfield. I remember running the bases as hard as I could. For some reason, the outfielder hadn't got the ball when I rounded 2nd base so I ran faster. I got to 3rd and the base coach was telling me to stop. "Are you crazy?" I thought, "I can beat the throw." So I rounded 3rd and started home. What I didn't see was that the right fielder had gotten the ball to the 2nd baseman who had a killer arm. I saw home plate... I saw the catcher... I ran faster... I was going to get a home run!... Then............ WHAM!!! The ball smacked the side of my head and broke my glasses... but I still made it home!

Now if you've seen my picture when I wore glasses, you could say I looked a bit like "Kip" from Napolean Dynamite so not having glasses probably imporved my overall "look". YOUR MOM GOES TO COLLEGE! But you know what happened that night? I decided I didn't need glasses anymore. I decided I would train my eyes to see clearly.

Now that may sound impossible but to this day, I don't need glasses. In fact, my eye-site is better than it was... until a few days ago. I noticed that I was squinting a little again. Now don't start throwing softballs at my head but this story reminded me of a verse that we looked at, "FOCUS YOUR EYES ON JESUS"

RESPOND: Sometimes you need something to smack the side of your head in order to realize that maybe you're depending on it rather than what's important. Stop focusing on what you can't do this month. Today, write down a list of things you could do... things that will help you grow closer to God... things that will help you grow closer to your family... things that will help you point your friends to Jesus... and then, before God smacks you upside the head, focus on Jesus and do what He would want you to do. Se how much of your list you can accomplish this month.

Day 2

From Dave

READ: 1John 2:15-17

RELATE: As a kid growing up in Redding, CA, my friends and I hoped for our “dream truck.”  You see, in Redding, if you don’t have a truck, then you’re not cool.  Oh, and the taller the truck, the cooler you are…….. or so we thought.  In high school my Dad helped me get a little Nissan Sentra.  It was a good reliable ride……. but it wasn’t big.  So I convinced my dad that the car was falling apart so he helped me sell it and I then bought a Ford Bronco.  From that point on my goal was to dump as much money as I could into my rig which would include a lift kit, big tires, and an amazing stereo.  I don’t want to say that I didn’t struggle with media when I was a teen, it’s just that my main focus was on this truck.  Not only did I waste a ridiculous amount of money on that truck, I wasted time that could have been better spent in countless ways. 

RESPOND: Today, let’s try to set aside the things that are “in the world” and try to focus on the things that are edifying to God.  Let’s give up more than media today.  Throughout your day, ask yourself, “What’s my focus on today?  Is it in the world, or is it in the Father who lives forever?”

Day 1

So today, we begin. Sure this is going to be hard. Yes you are going to have to work at it. For some of you that have been through it before you may not be worried... but today, I want you to remember why we are doing the Media Fast.

READ: Read in your Bible the following: HEBREWS 12:1-2+

RELATE: "Lay aside any weight... that clings so closely..." Think about that phrase today. I just read an article from the University of California in San Diego that did some research on Americans. Did you know that Americans consume 3.6 zettabytes of media per day (outside of work)! I don't know what a zettabyte is but they said it translates to 1.3 trillion hours per day! So put that into terms we can understand... that would mean that every person in America consumes amlost 12 hours of media per day! I love the word "consume". We may think the TV is just on but we are consuming what it's saying. Your brain is always on... learning... and your soul... it's constantly consuming.

Take it to another level... that 12 hours per day of media consumption translates to over 100,536 words per day! That doesn't include the words your parents, teachers, friends, and sibling use in a day. Now I know it may seem like I use that many words in one Sunday morning teaching in High School group but actually (I figured this out just now), that I used approximately 100 words per minute... and for the 30 minute talk I did this past week (and a lot of it was the students responses) that translates to about 3000 words...

So let's assume that you don't spend any other time with God during the week. You don't read your Bible. You barely pray. That means that in 1 week, you have consumed 703,752 words of media (probably not directly focued on God) and only 3000 (give or take a few) directly focused on God...

RESPOND: Here's the thought for the day: Do you think that maybe... just maybe... the weight that is holding you from having your "dream relationship" with God may have something to do with the things your mind and soul are consuming? Maybe we are clinging so closely to our media that there is no room for God... I mean, after all... 8 hours at school, 12 hours of media... that's a lot of hours in your day for other stuff instead of God's voice. I challenge you today to take some time to read your Bible. Read Hebrews 12 and see what sticks out. Then, talk to God about it.