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Tony Myles is a youth ministry veteran, author, speaker, volunteer youth worker and lead pastor of Connection Church in Medina, Ohio... and he really likes smoothies.

I came across this video and it seemed all too familiar.

(thanks to ChurchLeaders.com for the tip)

A few years ago I did a similar illustration of having someone slap me hard as a part of a service. In each of our gatherings, I invited up someone whom I considered a good friend (but who wasn’t in on what was about to happen). I then shared with everyone how hearing “Jesus died on a cross for you” has become so commonplace we no longer realize some of what it means.

Between our two services, I got slapped hard two different times, with each service having it happen at least twice. My cheek was throbbing by Sunday afternoon.

sermonillustrations

Years later, I’ve heard it was the difference in the faith of one of our (now) key leaders. In his words, “When you let Jon slap you, and then again, I felt the nails going into Jesus’ flesh for the first time in my life.”

Nothing like taking one for the team.

Sometimes we take this too far, though. In one church I was a youth pastor at I had it in mind to have the kids do an altar call while walking through fertilizer. My short-sighted thought at the time was, “It will help them realize all the crap Jesus will walk with them through.” Thankfully, someone much wiser than me interjected and I backed off the idea altogether.

What have been some illustrations like this you’ve seen “work” (or perhaps a few well-intended ideas you’ve watched go south)?

Share your thoughts. Let’s brainstorm and learn from each other.

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  • Greg Hench says:

    I did a re-enactment of Jesus’ flogging. Made a whip out of swimming noodles, (I cut them into strips). I put a tray of red paint on the stage (Outside) and after I would hit the kid across the back very hard I would then drag the whip through the paint and continue beating. It was very effective but the kid told me, the more paint that built up, the more it stung. He had a white tshirt on but it still left some marks. Nothing too bad. (Make sure you clear it with a parent if using a kid.

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