I got to work on a teen Bible project this year with my friend Mark Oestreicher, who served as the general editor.
I love thinking through things with Marko. He's a fun guy. He has a great beard.
Marko knows a lot about teenagers. He's super smart. Waaaay back when playing "Words With Friends" on our phones was cool, he'd clean house and beat me in five minutes. (I did wonder if he cheated since online gaming has some loop holes, but even if he did cheat, I'd give him props for being the quickest, most consistent cheater out there!)
But seriously,I like the honesty that he brings to the table, his organizational energy, and vision for great work. He's a good friend. And I've learned a lot working with him over the years.
The Bible project was for a translation that I'm not used to using typically.
But, it's the Bible.
How can we complain?
It looked like a great chance to share hope with teenagers--so all of us dug in.
Wish we could take credit for writing it, but we can't. It's just that amazing all by itself.
Combined with our additional sections.....(Marko Oestreicher, Doris Rikkers, Jeannette Taylor, Steve Case, Anne Jackson, Crystal Kirgiss, Jeremy Lee, Brooklyn Lindsey, Tamara Rice, Scott Rubin, and Jory Trim)
came a gritty and practical approach to connecting teens with God's Word. Even the cover feels gritty to the touch--telling of it's contents.
We can know God but there is a fire that starts when we begin to know God more. It's an itch relief. It's a journey through mystery and courage. It's the revelation of God. It's the story of God's Son. It's the story of coming home. And I like things that scratch the "itch" BUT ALSO make the itch "itchier" (I told you I'm a loser at Scrabble. I like to make up my own words!)
This Bible, in my opinion, can make a curiosity for God "itchier".
I like that the hardiness found in it's pages doesn't leave teenagers in confusion. Instead, carefully selected language paves clear pathways, instructing young readers in relevant topics--giving them biblical insight that helps them right where they are in their everyday life. My favorite feature: the short but super engaging book introductions, they were so good I read them all.
I would love to get this Bible for all of our students. I don't have it in the budget this month. But it's definitely on my wish list, right up there with more finger rockets (in case anyone would like to help me with my wish list, I've linked the items to where you can buy them ;) I'm a stinker.
Hope this post helps you get thinking about engaging the curiosity of teenagers and connecting them with something that can really change everything.