Our Super Bowl Potluck Fellowship is February 3rd at 6:00! Come out and bring a friend!

Hey AYM Family!

Last night we welcomed some new sixth graders to the family as we talked about Standing When Others Bow and Bowing When Others Stand.

First, we looked at the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in Daniel 3. These three friends faced an incredibly difficult situation of temptation: bow down to the image of gold made by the king or be thrown into the fiery furnace. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had incredible faith and devotion to God, stood firm in their faith, and refused to bow down before the idol. They chose to STAND WHEN OTHERS BOWED. Couldn’t they have just bowed and asked for forgiveness? They could have, but that would have shown a faith that was less authentic than they had chosen to live by. If you read Daniel 3, you know that these three world changers respectfully explained to the king why they could not obey his command and he had them thrown into the furnace as a result. To the king’s surprise, there were four people walking around in the furnace when he looked in. Jesus was in the furnace with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

When we face temptations that seem like they are impossible to overcome, we need to remember that Jesus walks right along us as we trust in him.

Daniel faced a similar situation in Daniel 6. He was in line for a huge promotion in the nation of Babylon, and some others became jealous and devised a plan to trap Daniel. They knew Daniel was extremely devoted to God, and his faith was the only thing that they could use to trap him and prevent him from getting the promotion.The jealous men tricked the king into making a decree that anyone who bowed down to any person or god for thirty days other than the king would be thrown into the lion’s den because they knew that Daniel faithfully prayed at his window three times a day.

Daniel had a choice to make. Couldn’t he just pray in another part of his room so everyone thought he was obeying the king? He could have, but what kind of example would that have set before those who knew Daniel and the faith that he professed? Daniel continued to God at his window just as he had before. He bowed before God when everyone else was standing for themselves. The jealous officials saw Daniel and reported him to the king. Daniel was then thrown into the lion’s den, but God sent an angel to shut the mouths of the lions and protect Daniel!

Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were able to overcome the temptations they faced because they made their decision of how they would live their lives long before they were ever faced with these situations of temptation.

What about you? Have you decided how you will respond when your friends ask you to do something that goes against your faith and the word of God? Just like God was with Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, he will be with you and give you the strength you need to withstand and overcome the temptation you face.

Be bold and ask God to give you the strength to STAND WHEN OTHERS BOW AND BOW WHEN OTHERS STAND.

Be Blessed and have a great week!

-Pastor Dustin


THE AMAZING RACE: Persecuted Church Edition— Yemen— 7/15/18

Happy Monday!

Sunday Night was Week 2 of our 2018 THE AMAZING RACE: Persecuted Church Edition. This week’s featured country was Yemen. Check out this video for some more info on Christians in Yemen:

What helps these people to be so strong in the midst of such adverse circumstances?

2 Corinthians 4:7-12NLT says,
We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.

8 We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. 9 We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. 10 Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.

11 Yes, we live under constant danger of death because we serve Jesus, so that the life of Jesus will be evident in our dying bodies. 12 So we live in the face of death, but this has resulted in eternal life for you.

The believers in Yemen know the power of God lives in them, and they know that their example of faith and commitment to their faith in Jesus serves as a testimony to others including those who persecute them. Their lives have been radically transformed by the love, power, and freedom found only in Jesus!

Colossians 2:7-10 says, Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.

Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the spiritual powers of this world, rather than from Christ. For in Christ lives all the fullness of God in a human body.10 So you also are complete through your union with Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority.

The Yemeni Christians are rooted in Jesus and the worry or the desire to please man. Their lives are built on the foundation and truth of Jesus. They are thankful, strong and unwavering in their faith. They are not controlled by human thinking. They are full and complete in Jesus.

What you are rooted in feeds you. What are you rooted in? Where is your heart, focus, and trust?

1 Peter 2:9-10 says,  But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.

10 “Once you had no identity as a people;
    now you are God’s people.
Once you received no mercy;
    now you have received God’s mercy.” 

You are not like the world. You are chosen by God and you are royalty! You are part of a holy nation, generation, and God’s very own possession that has been chosen and set apart to change your world. You will show others the goodness of God! You need to search no longer for your identity— you are a child of God!

We pray for the people of Yemen, and we are also encouraged, motivated, and inspired by their example and unwavering faith in Christ Jesus!

Have a great week and don’t miss next week as we take a look at Mexico!

-Pastor Dustin


THE AMAZING RACE: Persecuted Church Edition— Sudan— 7/8/18

Hello #TeamAYMfamily!

We launched THE AMAZING RACE: Persecuted Church Edition Sunday Night. This week’s featured country was Sudan. Each week, teams compete in detours and roadblocks that introduce something specific from the week’s featured country.

John O’farrell, one of our middle school leaders, gave the message and encouraged us with 1 Peter 2:9—  But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

John challenged us to learn from the example of the Sudanese Christians of how their faith is unwavering even in the face of extreme persecution, sometimes even death.We are part of a chosen generation that has been chosen by God to make him known to the world around us. We may face some ridicule from time to time for what we believe in, but periodically facing hard times is more than worth it in light of what Jesus has done for us.

While we pray that God will give the believers in Sudan strength, we also pray that we will be inspired and motivated by their unwavering faith.

Be Blessed!

-Pastor Dustin


Happy Last Monday in June!

Last night was a night of worship. The band led us in a couple songs before we split up into stations for a time of more personal worship.

Students were able to pick from three different stations during the second worship segment. They could choose to draw a picture of what God’s love meant to them, write about what God’s love meant to them, or answer these three questions:

1. What would happen if you lived a life of worship in the fullness of God’s love?
2. What is holding you back?
3. What needs to happen for you to live in the fullness of Gods love?


Next Sunday is our bonfire hangout, and our “The Amazing Race: Persecuted Church Edition” begins July 8th.


Have a great week and we hope to see you soon!

-Pastor Dustin

HOW DO YOU REST? — 6/3/18

Happy Monday #teamawakening family!

Last night’s message was a titled, “How Do You Rest?”

School is coming to a close and summer is here as well as vacations, road trips, summer jobs, time to refresh and reboot, etc.

Have you ever gone through a summer and wondered where the summer went because life was so jam-packed full of things to do?

Last night we talked about rest. Rest is necessary to function properly.

Rest is actually a biblical principle and took a look at a couple examples from the Bible. Genesis 2:3NIV says, Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.

Rest means: interruption, cease, sit still to allow yourself to regroup and regain your energy and focus. Genesis 2:3 tells us that God rested. Why? He didn’t need rest because he was tired or weary. God was pleased. God was appreciating and celebrating his work in Creation.

The Sabbath was put in place for us to do the same. The word “sabbath” means: rest; remember; celebrate. Think of it as intermission and half-time in sports. It’s a way to rest up, refresh, regroup, and get ready for what’s next.

We all take breaks, naps, and sleep. But do we truly rest? Inactivity is not rest! Rest is truly unplugging from your stress and struggles and recharging in Christ. Let’s take a look at what the Bible says about the type of rest that Jesus offers.

Matthew 11:28-30 says “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

Jesus invites all who are struggling and tired from the load of life they are carrying to come to him for rest (rest, remember, celebrate, refresh).

Jesus tells us to “take his yoke”. A yoke was something that was placed over two animals to help them pull the plow. A yoke coupled two things together. Jesus doesn’t expect us to carry our load alone. He walks right beside us helping us pull our yoke, or load, as we go through life! As we go through life with Jesus he invites us to learn from him. We are able to learn how to live and overcome from the Master Teacher and Creator of the Universe himself!

Jesus says to take his yoke and learn from him because his yoke is easy and his burden light. The word “easy” in the original Greek language means suitable, useful, or well-fitted. The life that Jesus calls us to is fitted and suitable specifically to us.

Many times we feel like we are carry the weight of the world on our shoulders. We used this illustration last night: We had two of our male students come up to the front, and one them jumped on the back of the other. At first, the weight of the person on the back of the other wasn’t that heavy, but imagine carrying that weight around all day long. Imagine having that person’s weight on top of you as you tried to sleep. It wouldn’t take long for that weight to overcome you and wear you down.

What are you carrying? What is keeping you from resting? Are you yoked to the world instead of Jesus?

Choose to take the path that Jesus invites us to and find true rest in him.

Be Blessed!
-Pastor Dustin

Hope After The Storm— 5/6/18

Happy Tuesday #teamawakening family!

This past Sunday was the start of a new month, and that meant a new theme: “Hope After The Storm”.

We spent the month of April talking about staying ROOTED IN THE STORM when we face the storms of life, so this month we wanted to talk about the hope that awaits us after the storm.

We looked at the story of a man named Job. Read the book of Job the next time you think that you’re having the “worst day ever”. You may change your mind!

We looked at Job’s life in three different phases:

1.      Before the Storm

Job 1 tells us what Job’s life was like before he encountered his storm:

1.  He was blameless and upright; feared God and shunned evil.
2.  He had seven sons; 3 daughters; 7,000 sheep; 3,000 camels; 500 yoke of oxen(1,000 total), 500 donkeys,
     and a large number of servants.
3.  He was the greatest among all men of the east.
4.  God said of Job— There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God
and shuns evil.

When you are a person of this much wealth and influence, people look to see how you respond to hard times. Job encountered an incredibly hard time of life and serves as an example of hope to us all today.

2.     During the Storm

Satan was convinced  that the only reason Job was so loyal and dedicated to God was because of the favor God had given him in life, and was certain that Job would renounce his faith if he encountered hard times. Check out the storms that Job faced:
First attack:
1.   1:14— The oxen and donkeys are stolen. Servants were killed.
2.  1:16— Sheep and servants burned up in the fire.
3.  1:17— Camels are stolen.
4.  1:18-19— Children are killed.

Reflection Point:

                               1.  Take a moment to think about what Job lost.
                               2.  How would you respond?
                               3.  Have you ever felt like you lost everything that was important to you?
                               4.  Where is the hope and promise in those situations?
5.  1:22— Job still did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.
Second attack:
1.  Satan comes at Job again and attacks his physical well-being and Job has boils from head to toe.
2.  Job’s wife, who should have been his closest and biggest supporter, is not supportive at all.
     Job 2:9-10NIV says, His wife said to him, “Are you still holding on to your integrity? Curse God and die.
     10 He replied, “You are talking like a foolish woman.    
     Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble ?” In all this, Job did not sin in what he said.
     Check out this video clip from Tim Hawkins on Job’s wife for a little humor on the subject:

3.  Job 3— Job unloads and curses the day he was born.
4.  Job 4-31— Jobs friends argue with Job and accuse Job of wrongdoing!
5.   Job 38-39— God speaks to Job and corrects him for earlier claiming that the righteous are punished and the wicked rewarded.
                               Check out a few of the verses of God’s comments to Job in Job 38:1-10NIV:

Then the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm. He said:

“Who is this that obscures my plans
    with words without knowledge?
Brace yourself like a man;
    I will question you,
    and you shall answer me.

“Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
    Tell me, if you understand.
Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
    Who stretched a measuring line across it?
On what were its footings set,
    or who laid its cornerstone—
while the morning stars sang together
    and all the angels shouted for joy?

“Who shut up the sea behind doors
    when it burst forth from the womb,
when I made the clouds its garment
    and wrapped it in thick darkness,
10 when I fixed limits for it
    and set its doors and bars in place,

 5.  Job replies in Job 40:3-5NIV
Then Job answered the Lord:
             4 I am so insignificant. How can I answer you?
             I place my hand over my mouth.
            5 I have spoken once, and I will not reply;
            twice, but now I can add nothing.

6.   God again questions Job— Job 40:6-41:34. After his conversation with God, Job begins to see things differently. Job has now been opposed by his wife,”friends”, and corrected by God, but there is still hope in the promise.


3.     After the Storm

Check out Job’s response in Job 42:1-6:

           Then Job replied to the Lord:

             2 “I know that you can do all things;
               no purpose of yours can be thwarted.
             3 You asked, ‘Who is this that obscures my plans without knowledge?’
              Surely I spoke of things I did not understand,
              things too wonderful for me to know.

            4 “You said, ‘Listen now, and I will speak;
              I will question you,
              and you shall answer me.’
            5 My ears had heard of you
             but now my eyes have seen you.
            6 Therefore I despise myself
              and repent in dust and ashes.”


Job says in verse five that had heard of God, now he had seen him for himself. The word “seen” in the Hebrew means: to know, become visible, to look, recognize, realize. Job had been committed to God based on what he knew about God. Now, he knew God.

Are you currently living your life based on what you know about God without truly knowing him? Many people come to church and hear songs and messages about God and know all kinds of things about God without ever taking the time to get to know God personally.

Fortunately, the story of Job has a happy ending. God restored everything that Satan destroyed! The rest of Job 42 tells us that Job had 14,000 sheep and goats; 6,000 camels, 1,000 yoke of oxen, 1,000 female donkeys; 7 sons and 3 daughters.

Job refused to turn his back on God, stayed ROOTED IN THE STORM, and found his HOPE AFTER THE STORM!

Have a great week!

-Pastor Dustin

ROOTED IN THE STORM—WEEK 3—4/22/18 (Be A Seed)

Happy Monday!

Sunday Night was week three of our ROOTED IN THE STORM Series. The message was “Be a Seed”.

We kicked off the night with a game called “Bring It Up”. The game is simple—the first team to bring up the item shown on the screen wins the point. The items were things like: iPhone, a text from your mom, a sock with a whole in it, ear wax, belly button lint, fifteen shoes tied together, and more! The middle schoolers beat the high schoolers on this one.

The GEN122 Youth Band did a great job leading us in worship ON THEIR OWN with no adults on stage! Logan and Bella did an outstanding job singing the songs, Matthew did a great job on his lead line on the electric guitar, and Jayvon did a great job playing a new rhythm for the first time on the drums. We are pretty excited to see what the future holds for the band!

The message was “Be A Seed”, and we took a look at how we could be a seed and help people on our school campuses through the storms of life they face.

Some of the storms this generation faces are storms like broken or blended families, low self-esteem, betrayal, loneliness, addiction, depression, self-harm, suicide, lies, deception, and hypocrisy.
2.  Galatians 6:7 says,  Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.
(You will always harvest what you plant.)
Students were asked to think about this question: What Type Of Seeds Are You Sowing?
The quote we have been looking at all month from Heath Adamson says “God plants seeds in the mud.” This means that God has a way of planting seeds in the messiest parts and situations of life that helps us grow a harvest of victory and freedom as we overcome the storms we face in life.
God plants seeds in the mud and mess of our storm that counteracts the negative effects of the storm. When people are facing storms of depression, God wants to sow seeds of joy and happiness. When people are facing seeds of a poor self-image, God wants to sow seeds of confidence.
The truth is— YOU are the seed that God wants to plant. God wants you to be a seed of happiness, freedom, and victory in someone else’s storm.
Our theme this year is “GO! Get Your Harvest!” but we it’s important to remember that the seed comes before the harvest.
You are the seed that God desires to plant to bring forth the harvest!
The harvest you receive is directly tied to the seed you sow.  Would you be happy if right now God gave you your harvest based on the seed that you are planting in your generation?
If you aren’t happy with the harvest you are reaping in your own life and your generation, change the seed you are sowing and be the type of seed you want your generation to produce.
There are a lot of people going through a lot of storms, and they need someone to plant a seed in the mud of their storm to help them become rooted and built up in Jesus in the midst of their storm. Will you be that seed?
Students were given a few minutes to reflect on the things listed below before we split back into our Tribe Huddles to talk about what God laid on our hearts through the message and quiet time.
1.  Be Real. Be Authentic.
2.  Ask God to show you the seeds you are sowing into your generation.
3.  What does your generation need from you?
4.  What does the harvest that you want to see God give your generation look like?
5.  Do you need to change the type of seed you are sowing to help make it happen?
Have a GREAT week!
-Pastor Dustin


Hello to all of our #teamawakening family!

This Sunday was a week for storm stories! We did an unplugged acoustic worship set, and then moved into the message part of the night.

Some of our tribe leaders shared some of their most memorable storm stories, weather and life related, with us and shared how God has brought them through the storms of life they have faced.

One thing became very obviously as some of the leaders shared— adults and leaders face many of the same storms that students face. Storms that make us wonder if we are too weak, inadequate, useless, hopeless, etc. It was great for our students to see that their leaders are real people who face real storms in life just like they do.

The reason the leaders are where they are at today is because they’ve learned how to stay ROOTED IN THE STORM and be rooted and built up in Christ.

We  closed out with this powerful video:

The storm actually helps the eagle become the creation it is meant to be and reach its full potential! The same is true for you and me. Storms actually help us grow strong and confident while our full potential is found and unleashed in Jesus!

Don’t run from the storm! Be ROOTED IN THE STORM!

Be Blessed!

Pastor Dustin


Happy Monday #teamawakening family!

We kicked off our April theme last night— ROOTED IN THE STORM.

 We’ve all experience storms. Some hate them. Some watch them. Some chase them. Some hide from them. We also face storms in life, and how we respond to the storms of life we face determines how the storms will affect us.
Unfortunately, storms are inevitable. There is a phrase that we use around the church office that says, “Change is inevitable. Misery is optional.” Storms are going to come our way, but that doesn’t mean that we have to dread the seasons of life that brings the storms.
Text: Romans 12:2NIV says,
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
We’ve gone over this verse MANY times, but last night we looked at something in this verse for the first time. We looked at the word “renewing”. The word renew means to grant or obtain an extension of or on: renew a license: to grant or obtain an extension on the loan of renew a library book.
Your license is no longer valid if it is not renewed. Think about renewing a library book. You either return it or renew it. If you return the book, it goes back in the possession of the library. If you renew it, it stays in your possession.
The same is true when it comes to our minds. We can choose to renew it or return it. When we renew our minds, we allow control and influence of our minds to be placed in Jesus. When we “return our minds”, we allow the influence of our minds to return to Satan.
Renewing our minds is key to not just getting through the storm, but thriving in the storm.
Heath Adamson said, “Seeds are planted in the mud.”  Mud is messy, can be deep, difficult to navigate through, and can be immobilizing. Storms have a way of making a mess, and can leave us picking up the pieces long after everyone else moves on with their regular everyday lives. Strong, messy storms are something that we typically try to avoid at all costs, which can also affect the way we pray when we face the storms of life.
How do you pray when you’re in the storm and up to your neck in mud? Do you pray that God removes the storm or that he makes you stronger in the midst of the storm? The most important thing is not what the storm does to you as much as what God does in you as you work your way through the storm with his help and guidance.
Colossians 2:6-7 says,
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, 7 rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
The foundation of all we do and dream has to start, be rooted, and built in Christ. Try to picture and think of a tree and its roots.  The deeper and stronger the roots are, the stronger the tree is and the more it can withstand in the storm.
Where do the tree roots grow? They grow IN THE MUD! A tree can be cut down and actually grow back because the energy is stored in the roots! There will be times in life that the storms you face will knock you down. The good news is that you can get back up even stronger than you were before the storm if you are rooted in Jesus. You can stay ROOTED IN THE STORM!
Check out these two Scripture passages:
Psalm 1:3: Blessed is the one
    who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
    or sit in the company of mockers,
2 but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
    and who meditates on his law day and night.
3 That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
    which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
    whatever they do prospers.
Jeremiah 17:8:
“But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,
    whose confidence is in him.
8 They will be like a tree planted by the water
    that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes;
    its leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought
    and never fails to bear fruit.”
The tree that is planted, or rooted, by streams of water always has a source of strength and fuel to grow, thrive and become strong. We are like the tree in these two Scripture passages. A life that is planted and rooted in the presence and ways of Jesus will always have a source of strength and fuel to help navigate the storms of life. We sometimes pray and ask God to remove the storm that we are facing, but you can’t have the streams of water without the rain and you may not be able to have the rain without the storm. Be careful what you pray for!
We closed out the night by briefly looking at the true story in Matthew 14:22-33. Peter and the disciples were facing a storm at sea. Jesus came walking to the disciples on the water and calls out to Peter. Peter begins walking towards Jesus on the water until he took his eyes off of Jesus and looked at the storm and waves raging around him. Peter begins to sink into the water and cries out to Jesus to save him from the storm.
Did Peter fail? No! The moment that Peter was at his weakest and most vulnerable was the exact moment that he came to experience and understand the faithful provision of Jesus in the midst of the storm!
Where are you at as you read this post? Do you feel hopeless and overcome by the storm? I want to encourage you to call out to Jesus and allow him to plant a seed of trust, strength, victory, and deliverance in the midst of your storm.
You can’t have the tree without the roots getting muddy. You’re going to have to get muddy if you want to grow and stand strong in Jesus in the midst of life’s storms, but remember and be encouraged that GOD PLANTS SEEDS IN THE MUD!
-Pastor Dustin

March Madness—Week 2—SMASH NIGHT— 3/18/25

Happy Monday Everyone!

Last night was INCREDIBLE and POWERFUL as we set another attendance record with 46 students, and tore down the walls and lies that Satan has built up around this generation!!!

We kicked off the night with the drywall run and an upbeat, high-energy song to get everyone pumped up for SMASH NIGHT!


John O’farrell gave a powerful message and shared his testimony with the group. He shared 2 Corinthians 5:17ESV— Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

John shared that Satan has a way of feeding us lies. With each lie we believe and act on, the wall gets built up a little more each time. Before we know it, we are surrounded by walls, discouraged, depressed, and hopeless in life. The good news is that Jesus died on the Cross as the payment for our sins, and his love and power smashes down the walls in our lives and this generation as we place our trust in him! The walls and things of our past that have held us back no longer have power over us when we walk in the freedom and power that comes with being a new creation in Christ.

Hebrews 12:1-2 says, Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

We can look at the examples of those who have gone before us and smashed down the walls that surrounded their lives and their generation. We can also be confident as we lay aside every weight and lie as we smash down our walls knowing that we were the joy and prize that Jesus endured the Cross for. Our power and freedom is in him alone. Jesus broke down the wall of sin that separated us from him, and now we can smash down the walls that Satan has attempted to build up around our generation!

Check out the video below for a recap of our 2018 SMASH NIGHT and don’t miss our GLOW NIGHT and MARCH MADNESS Finale next week!


Have a CRAZY BLESSED week and be a part of helping someone else have a CRAZY BLESSED week as well!

-Pastor Dustin