While I'm Out Part Four: The Prayer Life.

Note: I'm at the Alive Festival all this week (June 16th-20th), and big fields are not known for their wifi connections. So I've set up a series of timed posts related to the new book to keep you all entertained. Enjoy!

There was a T-shirt floating around while I was in school. Some of the T-shirts we Christians are making are really something, just the utmost creativity piled into someone else's logo or something.

But the T-shirt that made me giggle a little bit while I was in high school read something like this: "As long as there are tests, there will always be prayer in school."

If we have students in our youth group who pray before difficult tests, we feel pretty good about ourselves. If we've taught them how to pray in and through difficult situations in life, we've done alright. If they're willing to pray out loud, well then you are a youth leader all-star!

When I first got to Westminster, I was supper proud of our kids in the area of prayer. We would open it up to the traditional "popcorn" style, where one youth leader would open the prayer, the other would close, and in between kids could pray for whatever they'd like. Some weeks we would be in our prayer time for up to a half hour! They would pray for themselves, their friends, their family, their hamsters, their sports team, their...

Again, we felt awesome! They were praying out loud! They were praying for each other! They were praying!

But then it occurred to me that there's actually a lot more to prayer than what we were teaching our students. What about silent prayers? What about prayers of examine? What about praying your way through the scriptures?

There are countless ways to pray. While I admit that it's no small accomplishment to get your kids to pray out loud and pray for each other, there's a lot more to teach them. We owe it to our students to teach them how to have a life of prayer, to live out the words of Paul in 1 Thessalonians 5:17, to "pray without ceasing." Be creative. Be innovative.

And continue to teach your kids a life of prayer!