Author: Elle Campbell

What Middle Schoolers Want to Know About Love & Dating

If you’ve ever talked to me or Kenny before, chances are, you already know that we’re a little bit obsessed with Middle School Ministry. Because, well… middle schoolers are awesome. And insane. And our favorite.

And they’re also super interesting. 

Seriously. Middle schoolers are fascinating. The preteen and early teen years are a crazy time of change and transition and developmental advances, which (for both middle schoolers and the adults who are trying to influence them) is both pretty cool and also a little bit terrifying.

And as middle schoolers struggle to navigate these years of growth and transition, one of the most confusing, important, emotional, exciting, and stressful things they will deal with is, without a doubt, the issue of love & dating.

We recently embarked on a 3-week teaching series with our students about this very topic. And as we strategized about how to deal with this super important topic, we knew we wanted to make sure we were doing our very best to address our students’ biggest needs and questions. We had some ideas about what we thought they needed to hear about love and dating, of course, but we couldn’t help but wonder… Are we really being helpful? Is this content relevant to what they’re dealing with? Are we addressing the questions our students are actually asking about love and dating?

We weren’t sure. So we decided… if we really wanted to know what our students are wondering about love & dating… we should probably just ask them.


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What is Orange? Mission

Well, this is it. The last of 4 posts in our series for Orange Bloggers Week. If you’re just checking in for the first time, we’ve been spending the last few days talking about what thinking orange means to us and how it’s transformed our ministry.

Here are the 4 things we’re talking through…

  1. PARTNERSHIP. Linking arms with others.
  2. LEADERSHIP. Leading teams and mobilizing volunteers.
  3. CULTURE. The state of the Church and family.
  4. MISSION. Engaging others with the Gospel.

As you may have already deduced, this particular post is about MISSION. One of the reason we so love and appreciate the folks at Orange, and the orange strategy in general, is because engaging others with the Gospel is woven throughout everything. Like we saw in our culture post, thinking orange requires us to look outward. It forces us to question and rethink the way that we understand and engage those outside the walls of our church.


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What is Orange? Culture

As you probably know by now, Stuff You Can Use is going orange this week! Check out our posts from MondayTuesday, and Wednesday to get up to speed… and to hear how you can win a really cool PRIZE tomorrow!

We’ve already shared two things (PARTNERSHIP and LEADERSHIP) that we love and appreciate about what the folks at Orange are contributing to the Church right now. But there are two more things we want to talk about today. The first one is culture.

When you get exposed to thinking orange (whether it’s through the Orange resources, The Orange Conference, or even simply the community of orange thinkers around you), you will be challenged in the way that you, and your church, view and engage culture.

To give you a first-hand look at what we’re talking about, today we want to simply give you a peek at some of our notes from this year’s Orange Tour.


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What is Orange? Leadership

If you’ve been following along with us for the last couple of days, you already know that Stuff You Can Use is going orange this week! Why? Well, you probably want to check out our posts from Monday and Tuesday to get yourself caught up… and to hear how you can win a really cool PRIZE on Friday.

Yesterday, we shared what thinking orange has taught us about PARTNERSHIP.

And today, we want to keep things rolling by sharing what thinking orange has taught us about LEADERSHIP.

Thinking orange, like we said yesterday, is all about partnership. And partnership can be really, really, hard. As leaders, if we really want to think orange, we’re all going to need a pretty heavy dose of humility. 

Here’s the thing about leaders who think orange…


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What is Orange? Partnership

Stuff You Can Use is going orange this week! Why? Because this week is officially Orange Bloggers Week. This week, bloggers from all over the place are devoting some time and space on their blogs to talk about orange.

HANG ON! New to this ORANGE stuff? Not sure what it all means? Read this first.

So what is orange, you ask? Good question. Let’s define our terms.

Orange (with a capital O) is a company made up of some really cool, really kind, and really creative people who make stuff to help us Children and Student Ministry people be more awesome.

The Orange Conference is an annual conference that the people at Orange put together.

And orange (with a lowercase o) is simply a philosophy and strategy of doing ministry. It’s a way of approaching our churches, families, volunteers, and church staff members. This orange philosophy and strategy is certainly championed and influenced and, in many ways, led by the people at Orange… but it’s bigger than that. Thinking orange is a mindset that many of us believe is absolutely essential to the future of the Church and the furtherance of the Gospel. It’s not a product. It’s not a program. It’s a way of thinking about (and rethinking) what we do in ministry.

That’s orange. We love it, we believe in it, and we like talking about it.

So like we said yesterday, this week we’re going to be blogging about 4 THINGS that orange means to us: Partnership. Leadership. Culture. Mission.

Today, let’s talk about PARTNERSHIP.


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