4 Fun Ice-Breaker Games to Play at Church Small Groups

game

A church group crumping.

Being in a large group of people that you’ve never met before can be intimidating. Trust me, I know what it’s like.

You walk through the door and everybody immediately begins looking at you. The weight of their gaze falls upon your shoulders. Beads of sweat begin forming on your brow as you desperately try to think of what to say when you introduce yourself. You take a few steps forward and clear your throat as you stretch out your hand. “Hi, I’m Jake!” you say. Then she replies, “Welcome to Wendy’s. What can I get you?”

Awk. Ward.

Small Groups, Community Groups, or as the kids call them these days, “Christ Franchises” can be just as scary. One of the best ways to ease this tension is to play a group game that makes everyone mad and/or annoyed with one another.

kids

“Christ Franchises are off the heezy-buhjeezy, yo!” – Kids

One of the most important things I’ve learned being a part of my own church group is that, the best way to get to know someone isn’t to talk to them and get to know them on a personal level, but to actually play an overly-long game that most people want to quit about 5 minutes in.

This also allows you to add to your “Acquaintance List”, those people that you kind of know but actually really don’t know at all. Because, at the end of the day, isn’t that what community is all about?

Below are 5 fun games that are perfect for breaking the ice!

1. Slappies

slappies.jpg

Blur may vary.

Materials Needed:

  1. Hands
  2. A Face
  3. Being Alive

This is a great, easy introductory game for those new to the group. The rules are simple. Pair everybody into groups of two.

If there is someone not in a group or there is an odd number of people, those that are left are not worthy and are what we call in the Church as “Undesirables”. They are to be banished from the group for all eternity.

Next, everybody simply slaps each other as hard as they can until someone either:

  1. Passes out.
  2. Gives up*

*those who give up are weak and are not to be trusted in the Church. They are to be banished from the group for all eternity

slap

Great form.

Like I said, this is a great warm-up game and shows people what it’s like to live in fellowship together.

2. Wayne Brady: The Game

wayne

The greatest talent of our generation.

This one is great for larger groups, however, there are a lot of things involved so you need to pay attention.

Materials Needed:

  1. Pens
  2. Paper
  3. More Pens
  4. A Broken and Contrite Spirit
  5. Still More Pens

Below is a quick breakdown of all that is involved in Wayne Brady: The Game.

Untitled

Everybody gets in a circle and selects one person to stand in the middle. This person is referred to as “The Wayne.”

One person is tasked with the position of “Mediator.” Their job is to select a book from the Bible (the more obscure, the better. King James Version is recommended) and ask “The Wayne” to quote, word for word, a verse from whatever book they choose. If “The Wayne” fails to do so, he or she is to get down on all fours as the entire group dog piles onto their back.

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The game in action.

As the dog pile commences, the chorus from Quad City DJ’s hit song “C’mon N’ Ride It (The Train)” is playing, except the word “train” is replaced with “Wayne.”

This game actually has nothing to do with Wayne Brady, but sometimes in the Church you just need to do what you’re told and not ask questions.

3. Child Toss sponsored by Allstate®

Allstate-Logo-Large

Child Toss sponsored by Allstate® is sponsored by Allstate®. I cannot stress that enough, they will sue me if I don’t.

Materials Needed:

  1. Child
  2. Flaargenschtamp
  3. A blanket
  4. More Pens Again

Child Toss sponsored by Allstate® is a game steeped in history. In fact, it’s been speculated that the game was first invented by the Egyptians! Wow!

egypt.png

The Egyptians were pros.

The game is simple. The goal of Child Toss sponsored by Allstate® is to toss the child into the air as high as possible. Points are measured by both the weight of the child and the height reached.

First you need to find a child. The smaller the better. Although heavy children can land you more points.

Take this one for example:

child

This one right here looks tossable.

From first glance, this child looks about 16 or 17 stones. Now, “What are stones?” you ask? Well, allow me to explain.

For the sake of tradition, stones are the standard of weight used in Child Toss sponsored by Allstate®. Stones were first introduced by the Prussians in 1631 after they lost by a controversial call in the Capital One® Orange Bowl to Virginia Tech.

Below is a quick breakdown of stones and their relation to points:

Screen Shot 2015-11-19 at 4.54.50 PM

Sponsored by Allstate®

You toss the child by placing them gently in a large, sturdy blanket or sheet then tossing them into the air

old blanket

This one should do the trick.

The height is measured by the world-famous Flaargenschtamp. The Flaargenschtamp was first used by the Iroquois League. The name actually came into being from a translation error.

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The Flaargenschtamp. This is actually also sponsored by Allstate®.

German immigrants that contacted the Iroquois on their first conquest of America incorrectly translated the word “Floganohowaeha”, a Mohawk word that means flaargenschtamp.

Once you and your friends start tossing children around, it’ll be hard to quit! This is a game you should definitely try during your next small group!

4. Pretending to be a Burrito

sour cream

A little too heavy on the sour cream for my taste, but that’s just me.

This one is a great 4-player game. So if your church group only has about 4 people, you should probably start asking more people to come to your church group.

Materials Needed

  1. Blanket/Sleeping Bag/Large Rug
  2. Chips
  3. Queso
  4. Bean Dip
  5. Pens sponsored by Bic®

It’s no secret that the popularity of burritos are on the rise. Ever since they were introduced at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, they’ve experienced a surge in popularity ever since.

Take a look at this graph:

Screen Shot 2015-11-20 at 11.54.46 AM

As you can see, Series 1 burritos (shown in blue) have risen to about 43 percent. Whereas Series 1 Not Burritos have only risen to about 22 percent. I think I can safely say that illustrates my point perfectly here.

You begin the game by laying the blanket/sleeping bag/rug on the ground and having someone lay down in the middle of it.

I personally always like picking the person I like the least in the group to be in the middle. That usually means that everybody in the group lays in the middle.

Next you simply put the ingredients of your choice on the person in the middle and begin rolling them up! Here’s my go-to ingredient list:

  1. Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  2. White Queso
  3. Guacamole
  4. African American Queso
  5. Spanish Rice
  6. Tomatoes

I like my burritos simple.

Here’s roughly what the end product should look like:

human burrito

What a blast.

Once the stains begin seeping into the blanket, you have a great opportunity to hang it on the wall to remember all the fun times that were just had! You might as well since those stains are probably never coming out.

Welp, there you have it! 4 fun games you can try at your next church small group! Check in to see updates on this topic. Maybe I’ll post 4 more games in the future!

 

5 Common Money Mistakes to Avoid in Your 20s

One hundred dollar notes are seen in this photo illustration at a bank in Seoul January 9, 2013. Japan's drive to weaken the yen poses a threat to big South Korean exporters such as Hyundai Motor, but Koreans may benefit as the new president aims to shift policy away from supporting big exporting conglomerates. The yen's tumbling by some 10 percent to the dollar in the December quarter at a time when the won has been on the rise sent the shares of big exporters falling and raised concerns among the policymakers in Seoul. Picture taken January 9, 2013.  To match Analysis KOREA-CURRENCY/  REUTERS/Lee Jae-Won (SOUTH KOREA - Tags: BUSINESS) - RTR3CGGO

Your twenties are an exciting, albeit nerve-wracking and stressful time. Whether it’s school, work, or a budding relationship, it can become alluring and easy to shell out large sums of your hard earned cash. Keep your future financially secure by avoiding these 5 easy to make money mistakes.

1. Withdrawing your savings and trying to buy Haiti.

haiti

We’ve all been there. You just got your first “grown-up” job and now you have more money than you know what to do with. So, you ask yourself, what do I do with all of this? Unfortunately for an increasingly large amount of millennials, the allure to try and buy the Caribbean nation is strong.

I was able to sit down with Christina Diaz, a waitress here at the Norman Red Robin, and she was able to provide some context to this situation:

Hi, my name is Christina and I’ll be taking care of you today! Can I start you off with something to drink? Some tea? Water? A Freckled Lemonade? 

My advice? Don’t try to buy Haiti. Save your money for something else.

2. Throwing your credit cards at strangers like Gambit from X-Men.

gambit-x-men

It is a statistical fact that Gambit is the coolest member of the X-Men. If you don’t believe me, look at this study conducted by the University of Toledo:

Screen Shot 2015-07-29 at 3.24.47 PM

Adding to the fact that Gambit is a total boss in the video game Marvel vs. Capcom, it is easy to see why so many young people these days try to emulate him. However, as cool as Gambit is, there are pitfalls that can arise when one tries to do this. There has been an increase in the reports of young people running around yelling “CREDIT CARD!” and throwing their credit cards at strangers on the street. There are two major reasons why this is a problem:

1. Sometimes people don’t like having credit cards thrown at them.

2. If you listen closely in Marvel vs. Capcom, Gambit actually says, “KINETIC CARD!” and not “CREDIT CARD!” This is due to Gambit’s ability to create, manipulate, and control kinetic energy. 

This misunderstanding is becoming increasingly common and it is a dangerous one.

3. Putting money in a blender and drinking it.

money_blender

The pressure to look good has always been present in American society. Yet, through the power of popular culture and the media, that pressure is stronger than ever. Some young people have responded to the societal burden of looking thin by taking the seemingly logical step of blending and consuming their money.

While this may seem like a good idea on the surface, digging deeper into this activity reveals that blending your money and drinking it isn’t a smart move.

A recent study performed by the University of Phoenix revealed that blending dollar bills can be hazardous to your blender’s health. The fibers in the dollar bills can quickly cause wear and tear on the blades, making it less effective and ultimately costing you money.

The solution? Fill up your kitchen sink and let the dollar bills soak for about 30 minutes. Then, using your hands, tenderize the bills into a nice, mushy pulp.

pulp

What the end product should roughly look like.

This saves you money and hand-tenerizing your bills releases enzymes that makes it taste great!

Yum!

4. Funding a militia to storm the Kohl’s at the local strip mall. 

militia

There is perhaps nothing more American than hating the department store Kohl’s. It’s a tradition as old as America itself. Sitting at home, having the vein on your forehead bulge out in anger while thinking about them greedily hoarding all of those really cool jeans and backpacks is something we’ve all done at least once in our lives.

Kohl's

The face of tyranny.

The temptation to declare war and arm the men of the village with muskets is a normal and ever-present one. However, I must caution against this. Why? Because the price of muskets has risen dramatically in the past few years. See the chart below:

Screen Shot 2015-07-29 at 6.04.41 PM

As you can see, the price of Charleville muskets (the best kind of musket) has increased heavily in recent years. In fact, it’s risen so much that the price is hovering slightly over 6!

6 is a big number. It is bigger than 2. Because of this, I must advise against someone trying to overthrow Kohl’s.

5. Building a rocket and going on a solo mission to find out where the Universe ends.

universe

If there is one thing that the 1995 film “Apollo 13” succeeded in, it was ingraining into the collective American psyche that space can be really cool and fun. The fictional account of Jonathan Lerman (played by Tom Hanks) and his robot companion Kooby (voiced by Tobey Maguire) landing on a comet and getting into shenanigans across the galaxy captured our hearts and resonates with us even today.

apollo 13

It’s only natural to want to replicate what you saw on the silver screen. However, let us remember that Apollo 13 is, in fact, a movie. The Apollo 13 mission is completely fictional and didn’t actually happen. No human has ever been to space.

Add to the fact that recent studies have determined that the Universe is actually really big, building a rocket to go see where space and time ends might not be the best bang for your buck.

I was able to sit down with renowned astrophysicist and NBA superstar Kevin Durant to get his take on the matter:

Screen Shot 2015-07-29 at 3.19.21 PM

By simply avoiding these easy to make money pitfalls, you can ensure that your future is financially secure heading into your next decade!

21 Reasons Why I’m Better Than You

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Photo Cred: Matt Woods

1. I rode the Silver Bullet at Big Splash Water Park when I was 11 and wasn’t even that scared.silver bullet

I didn’t even cry when I got water up my nose.

2. I made a quesadilla once and it was pretty tasty. black bean quesadilla

It looked kinda like this.

3. I went on a mission trip once. sleepy

I hi-fived an orphan kid.

4. I read a lot of Hank the Cowdog books when I was little. hank

I probably read this one.

5. I’ve been to Universal Studios like 5 times. univ

I like going there.

6. I haven’t drowned yet. swimming

I can swim.

7. I’m not allergic to penicillin. penicillin

It doesn’t bother me at all.

8. I’ve kept a purple secretia plant alive for like 6 years now. IMG_5517

Here it is.

9. I saw Drew Carey in person once. Drew-Carey

It was in New York City.

10. One time I carried two McDonald’s cheeseburgers in my pockets for 8 hours and ate them when I got home. mcds-cheeseburger

I was wearing jeans.

11. I got 3rd place at the Mr. Mustang Pageant in High School.

mister mustang

It was cool.

12. I put Cholula Hot Sauce on my pizza.

hot sauce

It tastes good.

13. I know all the lyrics to “Can We Talk” by Tevin Campbell.

Tevin_Campbell_-_Can_We_Talk_song

All of them.

14. I can make fart noises by blowing into my knuckles. 

handfart

It’s pretty funny.

15. I take really big poops.

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 10.13.14 PM

Think this is a joke?

16. I’ve played a game of baseball before.

tee-ball

This isn’t me.

17. I have veiny hands.

IMG_8567

See what I mean?

18. I’ve been on a date with a girl.

date

It didn’t lead to anything but it went pretty well.

19. I have a poodle named Gracie. 

IMG_9144

She’s old.

20. I got called a “dumb mother-[expletive]” when I worked as a production assistant one time and it didn’t hurt my feelings that much.

PA

It was pretty hilarious in retrospect.

21. I choked on bacon fat three consecutive days in a row once and it didn’t stop me from eating it all the time.

bacon

It tastes too good to stop.

I’m pretty amazing but we can still be friends, I guess.

You’re welcome.

12 Things Christians Need to Stop Saying

word bubbles

As Christians, we are called to be witnesses to the world. Matthew 5:16 says, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” There are probably other verses about that in the Bible somewhere, but I don’t know how Google works and I only read my Bible when people can see me doing it.

Unfortunately, sometimes we don’t honor and represent who Christ is by our words. Whether we intend to or not, we can sometimes say things that are hurtful, hateful, deceitful, or some other adjective that ends in “ful.”

The goal of this article is to scare you into saying the correct things at all times and to make you feel like you’re walking on eggshells when you’re around non-believers. This should absolutely terrify you. The entire fate of Christianity rests on your shoulders. If you’re losing sleep over this, then you’re doing a good job. Always remember the world-famous quote by Robert Redford,

“If you walk away from a conversation with a non-believer and they aren’t converted, then you failed and you’re going to Heck now.”

To prevent this from happening, here is a comprehensive list of 12 things you need to stop saying if you’re a Christian.

1. “I’m glad I’m a St. Louis Rams fan.”

rams fans

No you’re not. Why would you spread this lie?

2. “Let’s go to Carl’s Jr. for lunch.”

carl's jr

Blasphemy. Absolute blasphemy.

3. “We need more police drama shows on television.”

police

Stop staining His name with that talk.

4. “Pugs look completely normal.”

Fat-Pug

Shameful.

5. “Robbing a bank kinda sounds like fun.”

bank_2244997b

This could potentially be seen as a negative thing.

6. “I hope Pixar makes another Cars movie.”

cars

May it never be!

7. “This iced latte from Starbucks should probably be more expensive.”

starbucks

My heart breaks when I hear this.

8. “I hope I sit next to a crying baby on this flight.”

child-crying-on-plane

A lie straight from the pit!

9. “I don’t want any breadsticks, thank you.”

olive-garden-breadsticks1200xx1800-1013-0-90

Do you kiss your mother with that mouth?

10. “That Scion xB looks cool.”

scion

Foolish talk.

11. “Your daughter looks like an orangutan.”

orangutan

…by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

12. “These off-brand SpaghettiOs taste great.”

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tisk, tisk

Source: A RELEVANT magazine I read like 2 years ago.