WHO WE ARE
GRYM is the youth ministry of the Garden Ridge church of Christ, a warm, passionate, Christ-obsessed church family in the thriving communities of Lewisville, Flower Mound, Highland Village and beyond. We are located about 20 miles north of the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex.
GRYM serves teens in the 6th-12th grades, as well as their families.
YOUTH CENTER: The Hub (Garden Ridge room 221) + Youth Worship Center (Garden Ridge room 224)
The Garden RIdge Youth Ministry is a community committed to middle and high schoolers to create and cultivate life-long disciples of Christ. Keep reading to understand why this matters and how we do this.
A supportive community is vital to personal growth and discipleship, and GRYM is just such a community. In-home gatherings and Wednesday Re:Charge small groups give teens a safe place to explore God. We grow closer to God and each other through retreats, camps, service efforts, Bible studies and lots and lots of fun.
A distinctive quality of GRYM's community is that we are multigenerational. This means that, not only are there lots of peers for a teen to bond with, but there are also lots of safe, godly adults consistently in the teens' lives to offer understanding, comfort, support and godly wisdom. This also means that every teen in our ministry is known and prayed for regularly by one or more caring adults.
Without oversimplifying the complexities of following Jesus, GRYM defines discipleship according to Micah 6:8:
"He has shown you, O man, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To DO JUSTICE;
To LOVE MERCY;
And to WALK HUMBLY WITH YOUR GOD."
These three facets of obedience to God are the qualities we seek to cultivate in our teens and ones we celebrate as they develop.
MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOLERS
Middle and high school years come with a unique set of challenges and hardships. They are also a season of bold dreams and courageous action. Our ministry seeks to specialize in nurturing 6th-12th graders through the distinct challenges of these stages, as well as mobilizing and empowering them so they can reach their full potential in the world and in the Kingdom of God.
All people are made in the image of God. This includes teens, even those who seem to others to be "lost causes." We treat every teen with dignity and optimism because we believe they are precious to God, valuable and vitally useful to this world and capable of great things for God's Kingdom, regardless of background, failures, hurts, habits or hang-ups,
ALL are welcome...just as they are.
Everything we do--from Bible studies to small groups to Capture the Flag--is strategic with a single goal in mind: DISCIPLESHIP.
Jesus commissioned His followers, "Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age" (Matthew 28:19-20).
Statistically, the teen years are when people are most likely to surrender to Christ as their Lord and become His disciples. So by Jesus' power, the staff and leaders of GRYM seek to instill faith and love for Jesus in the students so they will be baptized into a life of forgiveness and devotion to Him.
We also partner with parents and other influential family and mentors in the teens' lives to equip them for the vital role they play in leading the teens to Christ.
Baptism is not the end goal. The second part of the Great Commission tells us that, after acceptance and baptism, we must learn obedience. Thus, the GRYM staff and leaders do not merely create disciples, but cultivate them, as well. We do this by modeling, teaching and counseling what discipleship and devotion look like.
We consider it a profound privilege to walk the discipleship journey with the teens, offering grace and guidance and encouragement where needed.
And we know we're not alone in this. Parents and other mentors have a tremendous impact on the development of teens' faith, so we continue to assist and equip and encourage the teens' families and mentors to contribute to their discipleship.
GRYM measures success, NOT by not in how many students are in our ministry, but by how many students who graduate from our ministry go on to live lives of faithfulness and discipleship beyond their high school years.
College and young adulthood can be times when those who accepted Christ in middle or high school walk away from that relationship with Jesus. Our goal is to prepare them during the school years for active, thriving discipleship as college students, young professionals, husbands and wives, parents, and as leaders in the church, business, or wherever their journey takes them.
DISCIPLES OF CHRIST
Christian and expert in Jewish culture, Ray Vander Laan, describes the difference between a "student" and a "disciple" in this way: "A student aims to know what the teacher knows. A disciples aims to be who the teacher is."
Unfortunately, the term "Christian" has lost much of its distinctiveness. It can mean someone who merely aims to know the Bible (a hearer, but not a doer). It could be someone who treats their Christianity as only an accessory in their life rather than the core of who they are and the motivation for what they do. A person can claim to be a Christian without any distinct lifestyle of purity, righteousness, grace, peace, joy or faith.
GRYM most often uses the term "disciple" rather than Christian because it still carries the connotation of truly seeking to imitate Jesus, to be who our Teacher is. Our goal is to create and cultivate lifelong DISCIPLES of Christ who will stand out in the world and bring glory to God.
Disciples seek to make a positive difference in their world through kindness and service. This requires personal sacrifice of our comfort and/or resources to improve others' situation. This can be accomplished through service projects and mission trips, financial giving to charitable causes, and even as simply as befriending a lonely peer or mentoring a younger person. GRYM provides opportunities for doing this collectively in hopes it will become a personal lifestyle for each individual.
Being like Jesus means loving radically. Discipleship transforms our relationships with our parents, our siblings, our church family, our friends, our boyfriends/girlfriends, and even our enemies. As we follow Jesus, there will be a noticeable overflow of love and mercy from us into others. The GRYM community is a place for teens to develop deep, meaningful relationships, as well as a place to see the radical love of Jesus modeled so the teens can live it outside of the GRYM community.
WALK HUMBLY WITH YOUR GOD.
A key part of the disciple's life is nurturing intimacy between himself/herself and God. This is done through things like prayer, worship, Bible study, meditation on the Word, solitude, Communion, giving, service, acts of faith and courage, sharing the gospel with others, spending time in nature, seeking wise counsel from godly advisors, etc. All of these--and more--refresh the disciple and strengthen their relationship with the Lord. GRYM provides many opportunities for these various practices, sometimes done together and sometimes done individually. The goal is for students to learn to continue these practices on their own time by their own motivation in whatever ways have the greatest impact on them.