Youth Center learns a new way to equip students as Bible teachers
During a Wednesday night youth group, 40 teenagers and leaders at Crossroads Christian Youth Center in Big Rock, IL, listened intently to the story of Jesus calming a storm.
When the story was over, OneWay’s Equipping Evangelist challenged the students to repeat the story in their own words. The students rose one by one, standing in front of the group and telling the story with excitement.
They latched on to a concept that OneWay has been using around the world to teach people to memorize and restate the Bible. They had begun to grow their “Heart Bibles.”
OneWay leaders are praying that through this youth center in northern Illinois, God has opened doors for a new Heart Bible ministry in the U.S.
“This [concept] makes perfect sense in every context for our day camp,” said Luke Flex, youth pastor at the center.
This January, Crossroads held a two-day version of a summer day camp, using it to test out the Heart Bible method. Eighty-five children listened as Flex told the story of Jairus and the bleeding woman.
“As I was telling the story, all of them were silent,” Flex recalled. “I had counselors go up to me after and say, ‘I think that was the best way [to tell the story]. Dressing up as the Bible story characters is fun, but it distracts the kids from the story.’”
This summer, Crossroads will host three weeks of summer day camp for more than 200 kids, coming from across the area and all walks of life, often from broken families. Leaders try to share the gospel with students multiple times a day. During small group time, counselors have a chance to share a Bible story and unpack it.
"There’s a lot of pressure on these teen leaders to have the perfect story and presentation," Flex said, "but this Heart Bible method takes so much pressure off of them. They can let the Scriptures speak for themselves."
In 2023, Sixty-two communities around the world committed to equipping their communities to learn and tell Bible stories, using OneWay’s Heart Bible for the Nations curriculum. When the Gospel Advance team travels worldwide equipping believers with Heart Bible for the Nations, their goal is to partner with churches and ministries who believe in their core convictions.
Our prayer is that Crossroads Christian Youth Center will become a Heart Bible ministry, with students committed to growing their heart Bibles and teaching others to do the same. Please pray for Luke Flex and his team as they prepare to use the Heart Bible training to share the gospel with their students in the weeks and months to come!
SCHEDULE A TRAINING Our mission is to equip people everywhere to know and share the Bible accurately and personally, including your church, ministry or school! During our level one training, we discuss the meaning and value of growing a heart Bible as a spiritual discipline as we learn, tell and teach simple Bible stories. After the training, participants will be asked to learn, tell and teach a series of six stories from the book of Mark. To organize or inquire about a Heart Bible for the Nations training in your region, email firstname.lastname@example.org.