How to Use Instagram in Youth Group: “Instamoment”

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There that moment (or moments) during any retreat, camp, or mission trip when a student “gets it”.  In our Wesleyan heritage we might think of it as an “Aldersgate Moment”; that moment when we feel so close to God that all of it begins to make a little more sense. Even if those moments aren’t truly life-altering, but simply a spiritual high or moment of clarity, being able to name them and to recall them is so important in the spiritual development of any person.

Instamoments are those very moments where in an instant we are changed in some way.

Think Instagram when leading this closing activity for a retreat, camp, or mission trip.  Form your group (or small group) in a circle and explain to them that you will be going around the circle and asking each to share the image that is in their mind of the most significant moment of the event.  Maybe for a mission trip it is that moment when they connected with a child at a Vacation Bible School; during a retreat when they were on the ropes course and conquered their fear of heights; or during a camp when the call to come to the altar took place and nothing was going to hold them back.

“What picture of that moment is etched in their mind forever?” That is what should be shared.

Another piece you can add to this is to have them “hashtag” that moment.  It might be things like:

#changed
#realize
#children
#Jesus
#igetit
#calling

When I did this at the end of a recent mission trip, not only did it allow everyone to think back to that “moment” during a relatively tough mission when it all started to make sense, it served as a great way for me, as the leader of the mission trip, to see how God was at work in each person’s life.

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Scott has served in student ministry for over 30 years, the past 23 years at McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church in Norman, Oklahoma, where he oversees ministries to Kindergarten through 12th grade as the director of student ministries. Having grown up in an incredible and life-changing youth ministry at Pioneer United Methodist Church in Walla Walla, Washington, Scott got his start in student ministry at Simpson United Methodist Church in Pullman, Washington while a student at Washington State University. He will never forget his first official Sunday as a youth director when 2 of the high school students who showed up were older then him! Scott has a passion for missions and leadership develop, and desires to create life-long disciples for Jesus Christ. He and Kristin have been married for 13 years, and welcomed an amazing little girl into the world in May of 2016. You can follow Scott on Twitter: @ScottMeier

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