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35: Interview with Tom Johnson the Raleigh Area Director for Young Life

Crossroads Connection / Pastor Andy George
The Truth Network Radio
October 15, 2020 3:00 pm

35: Interview with Tom Johnson the Raleigh Area Director for Young Life

Crossroads Connection / Pastor Andy George

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October 15, 2020 3:00 pm

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Young Life

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Welcome to Crossroads connection is a show all about having conversation surrounding life ministries and culture on is a quick thinking our friends the Truth Network for airing this program I think so much Tyler and think he truly for everybody who are listening today. We've got a fantastic interview with Tom Johnson from young life and you know it is an incredible ministry making a huge impact in students lives on the triangle and so we were going to jump to the interview specimen. Yeah, absolutely.

That's a quick word from our sponsor will jump into our interview with Tom. Perhaps you've asked yourself this question. Are you running the business as a business running.

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All this in different states and so have your today is really awesome. So before you jump in so young life and of course were joined here as well with Tyler and Jamie as well coming out of the break, but about you. So how did you actually end up in your life and what your role forcible yeah so I am very director of central Raleigh and Congolese director Floyd County so, coordinate between all of us are directors. We have five areas across the county southern wake of Raleigh social Raleigh Western wake country Effexor and then yell at college, serving just college students. Meredith wake tech is trying to grow shawl and jogs his life. College never heard of that is that a newer thing is always been. There is no were probably the last 10 years and started to come on you like this in your life, take off in one university and it takes you know five or 10 years before everyone else picks up on it but yes you state we been active there we can switch from just a recruitment of leaders to volunteer role. Back when I was in college in it somewhere on the way in the past five or six years. We really brought on a young life college director to not only recruit volunteer leaders to leave high school young life emotional wildlife but also to just minister to college to misdirect you classic little in the weeds. I have excess gray that's all right, that's wonderful. So what was it that drew you young life. Personally, I was a I was a kid who grew up in the Catholic Church. My parents came from different backgrounds and just picked one yet.

My guy was Catholic and so my mom did the full you know, I don't member what the process is called the defendant, Dr. Mason At church and then their marriage. That last and so when they divorced.

My mom wanted to remarry. My stepdad was going to get a little messy so we went back to her home denomination which is Baptist okay and that was right around the time I was in eighth grade and I just remember I got you know those are two kind of extremes on national ends and so I just summer feeling lost and that and not really connecting at church showed up to carry high school as a freshman, first day of school walked out of the breezeway into the parking lot met a guy with a beard senior in high school, you know, thought like I'll discuss cool actually talking to me yeah but freshman scared to death walking through this breezeway of upperclassman and mother from Brad. He said he has our brother. So Michael, you know, the seniors let's let's get on with these guys discusses smart move by Jeff and says you want to work on to the mall cross street is that you want to ride my Jeep Wrangler and I'm like yes and then asked the stuff as I can. It's drawback you cuss words you know as much as my stuff as a freshman. You have a jeep and brag is him and that's the LF leader. I don't know what I do know that yeah so you kind of explained it as Christian guys running around talk to me again next day I walked out of the same breezeway he yelled running across the waves at Tom hey Jeff yeah and from that day on, Jeff and I just came really good friends. I would assess all of your life.

I just mean Jeff was a good friend to me. Yeah, and loved me no matter what I did what I said and doctors would be into where he was doing, which was young life. Yeah. And so we became great friends and since I didn't want to.

Every LF club I could my sophomore year I went to this camp called Rockbridge. I would young life and I remember several things happen that weekend but but are our outreach weakens really exists to proclaim the gospel in a simple way to process it.

A simple way with her friends and then really like I've come to realize just experience it at camp like the beauty of its service nature of the work crew serving them. And of course there's a speaker with with actual proclamation peace but we have a lot of free time and we just like play games and you know the typical stuff up. You are what's going on acamprosate.

Kids are hearing processing expense in the gospel that happened to me that weekends in your life.

We give kids a gift anytime we have a weeklong camp or a week weekend camp. We say which to be 20 minutes outside under the stars to think through the stuff you and that to me.

I member coming home and told my mom so far and so funny. I got but they been forced down my throat number saying that I'm feeling like the Gospels always being like shot at me like like like a project right right and just thinking like whoa yeah believe this Jesus guy lived in. I believe he died for me, but I didn't ask him to.

So I know I owe him something.

You know, and always for little bit of a guilt complex. There and for the first time ever summer so this your free choice like this is what we believe and you have the freedom to respond to with your own spirit and not 20 minutes under the stars armor.

My prayer was not like theological. I didn't understand what I was saying, but also saying God I'm not happy with my life the way it is and if you are the answer. I will give you a shot something on the John Jeff you know look at the stars and just how weeping is I hear you. Again, the software elsewhere. Yeah my girlfriend is now my wife Judy Griffin is a sophomore. Yeah yeah J fall away and she was granted that we can, so she couldn't goes, I probably would've been my trying to find her denied 20 minutes of what she already Christian, yet we have these really finer intersecting paths where we've you know in high school, your faith is not like the switch right.

It just comes on and stays on rise this and flow in your figure things out.

If I would say like when we look back on our lives. Lives in high school we come to see were like the Lord was really like. Powerful. One of our lives become a drug going along and then got only got up on her backside would anyone call it and then you can't get along with so and we both have these figures that love is really well the car kept on being a home base to go back to the process are things with sin.

You know what I know my girlfriend was doing and yeah I got just just cut all the stuff that it's fun to see how the Lord is working in our relationship at the time.

How awesome is it to be so impacted by young life and now being in your life, leading leading a life so fill the gap between sophomore year and then go MC with school somewhere and then would you do have that episode cacao walkout. I really went off at know those great social stalker says love it. Yes, so we wanted to stay. I wanted to stay and begin volunteering with your life as a leader at Braun high school and spent four years there loved every minute of it. Got to lead some guys two classes of Geiser Broughton and then really had one more class on the stick with furniture year married right out of college because you know we've been dating for I guess I better plan yet so we got married and we stayed around for your mom there director or verb of the 20 was the recharter director Ray Siegler. He I went to masala going LF staff said you need a way to year and I was like whoa come on, that's not very nice like I think I'm ready. You know what you think that he said you can married you need to stay here in Raleigh for year and forgot your marriage if you do that not take your wife to new city right a job at the new ministry just to stay here for you so that we stayed for year I was really not happy about it but looking back it was really good decision and then we went on staff the LF in Goldsboro years started a club CBA got high school down there and then took Mary director job in little Washington North Anna where is that there is enough from North Carbonell Pioneers, but I hesitate at all this on a podcast or ratio because it's like the greatest secret North drawn its little town. 10,000 people. Yeah down the Pamlico River.

It's like North Carolina's many Charleston really but please don't tell people I like you as a secret religion right now nobody nobody visit nobody knows to go there and spend your tourism dollars you need to, but I never heard of that place is awesome. It's awesome.

It's the original Washington they're proud of that came before. Okay 1776. The responses they wishing them a city. After the sky in this assignment every entrance every road everywhere there decide whether so great, great, hotdogs bills, hotdogs and life on the water like every small town is a good hotdog place. Yeah that's like a mandatory thing. I think all the small towns you know everyone Scout-like that place all you likely force, like where we live, get Shorty's actual earnings in the got to staple wearing a rough track. Now that's what my plans the semesters to do work well with them… I'm sure, but creative creative guys at work and stuff only goes all through a county Raleigh and do a hotdog tour. Just take what about you guys.

Asia displays me. That place has gone around now. She stopped by CVS gets in Tom's way that you getting yeah we do that is getting is not reminding the world to Tulsa or Oklahoma member that oh yeah when we go to taco Bueno taco Bueno now you have heard of that that I had always known I had a better memory that LAC did not live up to my memory as a whole thing at times that night and I noticed I'm sure your trip will be much better you. We just lost taco Bueno is my response I got okay with it was my first time out so well, he's your from Texas you saw the sign near like we gotta go to taco.

It was like childhood memories yeah the Whataburger… That holds up Whataburger and have been with a grown man it's cried over food and not in another another guy. Yeah, you know, the guy does have a will with this, also from Texas and the and he was literally eating Whataburger with tears coming to you about it. I believe it was justified. It really was. Whatever you know all those memories so be in California, not in an outbreak that's I was when I got back to Raleigh and got back to his worst recharter yeah that was possible for 40 of my freshman 15 yet you remain as many taco now from the for me is my taco.

I would love to go tonight if you want to go to.

It's a great place to visit the Canadian side is better than my side. We also just lost the US of a is America wanting to talk about what to Washington 17. Something I see go on this journey. Know your young life leaders and what brought you back to Raleigh well just got the short answer is God saying we just kind of spent 10 years in the small town loved every minute of it. While not looking to leave it all and just got a call and you know hey hometown could be coming open and I'm there director here was moving on to another position in your life and we spray through it and the grandparents prayed for it along fellow yeah yeah because about. You were both from Pierce about grandpa answer here sets up so yeah we just heard the Lord's call and it was time we wanted to be time but now were here were really thankful for Pasternak fears also have loved it so people are listening between her little bit about your journey so was awesome to talk.

What young life.

So there's pride people listen. Right now they have no idea what we just spent the last steel fixing is talking about.

You know what is young life exactly in the mission division.

The purpose of young life's when I know shirts so young life exist to introduce adolescents to Jesus Christ and help them grow in their faith. Some was out awesome 1941 there was some women in Gainesville Texas who'd been praying for the high school across the street some grandmothers have been praying for the high school across the street for years and years for something to happen.

There are the same time Jim Rayburn was a youth minister. The posthearing church locally and the pastor there said really great thing. Then he said how to curb all these kids are coming to our church already when owners all those kids that are sitting out there that high school not coming torture all well so your job is to go out there and took them all and did it, and out of that young life was born 90 young life was birthed out of Texas yeah I know it's you know that I have a hard time about Texas you, I think, like it was born in Texas but was perfected and withdrawn, that yeah I like that I mean I love both of the things I have left as you will complement you been taking away from complementing both state so I can get a young lady Texas care for young life and Chuck Norris.

That's about as far as I'm going. I'm not going any further, take it will take it.

Chuck Norris is our was the owner was a Ranger there for a long time. The various uses I think is I decided I do realize that those birthed out of that heartbeat to get out of the church and go to a there's a bunch of kids over there.

Don't know what you honestly like just about the church building, rightly church is.

That is, the church is really where wherever the church is happening is where the church is also so like I think he was just people sell time to me like you I give to my church on about this nonprofit or whatever and I'm what will this nonprofit is part of the church you be a very specific arm of it right but I want to be inside the fence on that one. Like I want to be definition of the church.

If so, yeah, he started doing that it caught on the first name he first called it the miracle book club and a 0.00 yesterday that so you he picked up some quick things really quickly gonna hang out football players. He learns that if you want non-believer high school kids to show up to something you don't call it school. You don't have it on Sunday. So yes young life and was born it was happening, kids houses and weekly club meetings.

They are growing and to spread and now your life is an hundred nine countries really yeah have no idea. Yeah, we got 1200 areas across the US and so I always say it's the biggest youth machine never heard of you.

So it's design countries dramatic. I think I know it's over hundred You try. We at cytosine is one of our last art last year, which is one of our staffers to the Netherlands. She was starting in the Hague.

Yeah Bob Lisa so omelettes growing international yesterday. Great. So one of things I love here about our partners when they come in I will interview them is a story even young life a long time. I'm sure you got a story or two that you can also share so I love to hear story or two of just the impact that you see in your life. Make a mouse your story alone your story alone is is is proof of it, but yeah, there's a lot of stories I think is important understand about what we do is that we don't focus on the program right like the programs important. We have these weekly meetings in this campaign are Bible studies and camp trips since those are great there there just a vehicle for leadership right left when you think of your eye. One of the most powerful person on your high school 11 your football coach your mama football know you member the football coach of the right of your favorite teacher your member that they just talked to Matt that well right right you member that they were, they love doing and on the right to be heard focusing on and so really what were about is walking alongside kids getting to know them in the right to be heard on the right to listen and now we say people don't care machine onto a no much you care for that before so that's what we do, we do content work is really the brunt of it.

And so it is a primarily in high schools was also middle schools and what what's kind of the age range that young life target list list here here will give you a college program and then we also but young life incorporates all of these things since he left college for some your life wildlife spelled WY LD is our ministry to middle schoolers excellent and then young life is, the gotcha you have the original if you will, and what percentage schools are UN and wake County to think. Gosh it's funny that were in. We have 36 clubs last, littlest 36 ministries and said and that's also including like neighbor to me. We have a partnership whenever a neighbor in Southeast Raleigh up you way wildlife club in your life club. There on this more a neighborhood-based club than it is a school-based club and we have Capernaum our ministry to kids with special needs excellence. We have young lives mistreated teen moms. So all those things are you knowing and those other ministries: focus ministries you refocus on certain population as opposed to a school so we have someone in the 30s on ministries going on right now, today, wake County and there growing to work working like I think last I looked at the stats, there's 100,000 kids since Riley County with the biggest school system in the state. We were big in Charlotte. That's a bigger city. Yet we have more kids in school here with our school's mere fact for the 14th thing largest school system in America yeah and so while were really big on your life you live spectrum in Raleigh and wake County but were still not even halfway there that you think you know that that hundred thousand number includes only two schoolkids, Jeff, but but as far as yet it were. We need to get to Knightdale and yes, I would have Garner young life that we need to get to South Garner and we just started Fuquay Marina this past figure and so were were trying to grow to that outer band yeah you know there's a committee starting in life in up and wait for a ship but would our ministry going on there except for perm club so the correct so so gimme gimme a commute to US West or exile, not just walk alongside kids and listen me now so I just came from lunch with a kid who had a miraculous while an accident a couple weeks ago, we concealed gun accident should not be life at all mean the medical personnel said you should not be Latin and he is for the past two weeks. He's just been processing like why God saved me why my here was my purpose. Those the moments where if if you lack if if Buck is on Twitter myself hadn't been getting to know him over the past two and half years, he wouldn't have anyone to talk to about their right and so it's not that we just walked into his life and said hey tell me all about your songwriter, invite, invite into a thing, an event we just got to know him yeah and then when life happens when the questions get raised I will.

I believe the gospel, raise those questions up to date. They asked us questions of the person is Arianna right to answer them and what we report a powerful way to do ministry or your earned that right to be able to speak and some is likely trust you yet and walk out with you and that's happening all over the city, which is amazing is funny that is its relationship that all comes back to that. It's not that we have a great program figured out we do it's right it's awesome a lot. You are great program is its relationship. You think about how often we read stories in the Gospels often starts will then they walked to Capernaum more than they would tear out and went there ill or you know whatever yeah you how many miles Jesus walked with his disciples and not much of that is recorded yeah now it's just time with those jealous times we just do life just walking together. So talk us as we close out what is, next on the radar for young life and really only give you some airspace as well to how can people get involved in what is needed or consider all the people listen. In the June and you know it's what you know you obviously were changing the times are coded as differently but again are our core purpose is that relationship and that never ended.

In fact, I think the need for that and the desire has increased anything and so it's not as structured is not as formulaic a relationship is is probably happening even even more now than ever before with you within your life with leaders and kids so were having things like campaigners and in the park. You know I gorge together and just publicly public space outside social distance. All that just and where I'm Star Wars questioning.

Yeah, good life going yeah yeah so. Yeah PepsiCo.

It is change some things in yeah and more some things and so I guess the big question is what what do you what is needed right now in young life to help you guys accomplish whatever is it volunteers it funds as it resources you know when and how to get olio yeah so what she does people for sure, and money for sure were in our fundraising season right now that we had the Western white banquet last week and the Raleigh banquet this week on Monday and then you left college and North Raleigh in life will have their banquet Thursday this week. So what were doing that and that's the first time we've ever done this virtual banquet deals so we got you and Ellie Holcombe and Bob Goff to join us for that. I was really great so far as I can people give financially to support young life. Yet you can just go to our website, you can get giving that you left at Oregon look for your area. So if you didn't come north side of town you look for North Raleigh Central Raleigh, etc. just look of your city, or ZIP Code and find your area and give online and excellent reprise and find their love for it. If you're not try to tune in Thursday night if you want. It's not too late to his banquet, but we always people we what we do is just straight up relationship it's showing up its being around kids showing up on their turf, which so few people even Christians are willing to do you like get out of their comfort zone and show the space and in high school are most were space and so that's was needed yet to show we need people to do that and I mean that even Jesus himself had 12 so we just need more people there's more kids out there who want to get the gospel to them. We need as many people as a PET scan who would show up in their lives.

Excellent.

I am with something so much for all you doing to impact the coalition feel with our students so lasting. How can people get a hold of you, or just get a holy only.

So you give us the giving way, but it's the website is best. Make sure you have, you can email us at Raleigh. while@gmail.com. Excellent things in tribunal program for shale excellent you for joining you are prepping and painting make it possible you can find out more information about CrossFit is impacted you can contact it's not going to see. Responsiveness Your success as a leader buying from your team clear and consistent communication from you and strategic delegation. My name Cheryl Scanlon C3 Advantage helps you steward your most valuable resource.

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