Freebie Friday #100: Simpy YM curriculum download, YouthBytes DVD set giveaway

Free youth ministry resources every FridayWow, #100 is here! When I started Freebie Friday 100 weeks ago, I had no idea it would go this far or bless this number of people. Amazing.

This week we have two freebies: a download for everyone from Simply Youth Ministry, and a DVD curriculum set from YouthBytes.

“Hooked” from Simply Youth Ministry

Hooked is a 4-week lesson series from Doug Fields and Simply Youth Ministry that deals with temptation, accountability, and breaking from the cycle of habitual sin. It includes:


  • MP3s of each of the four messages
  • Transcripts and outlines of each message
  • Outlines in PowerPoint with additional backgrounds
  • Promotional ecard, postcard, poster, and desktop background
  • 4 all-new PowerPoint trivia games
  • Hooked-themed countdown
  • Hooked-themed motion background
  • Hooked-themed motion intro movie
  • 4 drama scripts that enhance each message
  • Audio commentary on the series by Doug Fields
  • BONUS: HTML site to promote the series online

This is a $35 value that Simply Youth Ministry is giving away exclusively to Life In Student Ministry readers for 4 DAYS ONLY! This download link expires Monday, November 24, 2008, at 11:59 PM so get it now.

See more about Hooked, including a video review by Joshua Griffin, on it’s official page at Simply Youth Ministry.

Download no longer available.

I’d appreciate it if you guys would post a link to this youth ministry resource giveaway on your blogs, message it to your friends in Facebook, spread it on Twitter, email to your ministry contacts, etc., so as many people as possible can be blessed by the curriculum giveaway from Simply YM for this short period of time.

20 DVD set from YouthBytes

We use YouthBytes in my ministry on Sunday mornings with both jr. high and sr. high classes. Each video is very well done, has a lot of flexibility, communicates Biblical truth very clearly, and sparks great discussions among our teenagers. I highly recommend them!

YouthBytesYouthBytes is giving away a 20 DVD set of video curriculum (40 episodes, $400 value) to one Life In Student Ministry reader.

To win, comment two things below:

1. What do you like best about Life In Student Ministry? How has it blessed your ministry?
2. A suggestion for how this site can improve in some way. How can it bless you even further? A new feature to add? Maybe a current feature that you don’t find particularly beneficial?

Next Friday, November 28, 2008, I will randomly generate a number at and count that many comments down from the top. That person will be the winner! (Must comment with a valid email address.) I’ll also post a comment below announcing the winner 7 days from today.

Join our LIVE YM Talk today at 2:00 PM EST! We’re talking about if youth events are still working. Join us using either your telephone or your computer microphone!

Posted on November 21, 2008

  • P. Diddy

    1. Like Jeff, I followed the link from Facebook to see this for the first time. I liked the video and the fact that your wife's name is Dana. That's my daugther's name!!

    2. I think there could be more advertising for this site, since this is the first I am seeing your site. It may be out there more than I have noticed, but I get so many different links, sites, and ads sent to me that it's hard to keep track. Seeing that SYM was linked to this offer is what brought me to see what was going on.

    Keep up the good work and I'll be bookmarking this site too!!

  • P. Diddy

    Not trying to double up on entries, but I have been looking over more of the site and I wanted to say thanks for doing all this.

  • 1.) It is a good read/watch of some cutting edge youth ministry thoughts. Having been in Student Ministry for over 13 years, some thoughts are a refresher but many thoughts are fresh and new.

    2.) WORD OF MOUTH!! I am doing my part…

  • 1. What do you like best about Life In Student Ministry? How has it blessed your ministry?

    A: Of course I dig the freebies. I also enjoy the articles, links and general YM stuff. Sometimes I get a direct idea (I'll be copying that) and sometimes and indirect idea (it makes me think about something else or I change it to fit my students and situation).

    2. A suggestion for how this site can improve in some way. How can it bless you even further? A new feature to add? Maybe a current feature that you don’t find particularly beneficial?

    A: Message ideas, outlines, etc. Maybe you have an area like that, but I'm always looking for a spark for a message – an outline or something. Maybe put your teaching/preaching outlines up on the web. That would be cool.

    Bottom line – thanks. Informative and encouraging. Rock on, bro.

  • 1. I like the practical helps for student ministry that is on Life in Student Ministry website. I like how Tim you are always very personal when it comes to interacting with the websites visitors. The website has blessed me by giving me some guidance as I start my first full time youth ministry job. Thanks so much!

    2. I do not know much to improve on the site. I would like to learn about more youth culture on the website. I think it is always something to keep up to date on. I would like to hear more personally from Tim. I don't really read much when it is guest bloggers. Thanks for everything you do Tim. You have helped me out a lot.

  • 1. Life in Student Ministry has really helped me. I love watching the training tip each week. I really like how you use guest videos (except the one about using students to lead worship – that guy seemed to be a dork!) Those training tips have helped me as I've used them with my adult leaders. Also, this has really challenged me to up my game as for as using tech in my ministry.

    2. This is not really an improvement, because it's already as good as it gets, but I would like to see the ym talk – if there's ever any way that it could be done by video chat too, that would be great

  • Christi Evangelo

    !. My husband and I are new to youth ministry and your website has given us a place to jump off from. We have found great resources. I especially love Friday Freebies. We are volunteer YP's and have a full time family= not alot of money. Freebies=awesome!

    2. I honestly can't think of any ways to improve. I am pretty new to this site and haven't even discovered all you have to offer yet. I am working on it though. I love that you have a facebook and twitter feed!

  • Matt Holbrook

    1. Life in Student Ministry has been a great help to me. I am a part time youth pastor here in SLC, Utah where there are not many other youth pastors to connect with. I recently graduated from Bible college and am in my first few years of Youth Ministry. With a full time job, a YP position and a family at home it has been a great encouragement and a huge help to me. Thanks for your ministry and all you do.

    2. I have been following your site for a couple months now and I am still trying to sift through the plethora of information that is already on here. I can't think of anything to be added. You minister greatly to all of us out here.

    Thanks again.

    And I am going to go ahead a put a shameless plug in here. I would love the YouthBytes dvds. When you first posted the link I went to their site and signed up for the freebie promo dvd and loved it. I just don't have a youth budget to make purchases like those.

    Thanks again for all you do,

    Matt – SLC

  • Tim,

    This has to be the sweetest freebie ever. Thanks for posting it. I linked it on my blog. Thanks again! You rock!

  • 1. Life in Student Ministry has been one of my favorite feeds. It always has extremely practical and relevant articles that any youth leader can use. I believe that applying what I have learned from LISM has made me and my wife better at what we are called to do.

    2. I can’t say for sure how LIYM could improve. God is certainly behind it. Some of us live in the middle of nowhere…Malone, NY…”Where is Malone?”. Maybe you could help us hicks connect with others in our area, or clue us in to.

  • Joy

    Hey, I’m not trying to sign up for the giveaway drawing – i just wanted to thank you and SYM for the Hooked download!

  • tim i’m grateful for the variety of what you provide…your good work here truly embraces life in student ministry. the topics are varied and offer wisdom and insight and practical and useful information.

    i’m not sure how you could make it any better. just keep staying at it and know there are many out here that are grateful for your leadership, heart and passion.

  • Hi hi –

    Thanks for your page. I enjoyed the video, and am poking around in the links!
    Power to your elbow.

  • What I like most about student ministry is the look on a teen’s face when they realize they have conquered a situation that they have been struggling with because they relied on Christ. It has blessed Core youth ministry because our group of teens are becoming bolder and bolder in their desire to win more souls from Hackensack High School.

    2. One way I would improve this website is the times of the Youth leader chat times. Many of us hold full time jobs and can not discuss at 2pm on Friday. I am in the middle of teaching my first graders reading. So unless you want a class of 21 7 year olds joining the discussion maybe once a month could be in the evening or something along those lines. Thank you for your willingness to open up connections between different youth group leaders

  • jeff

    well, i am brand new to the site! i followed a link from the Youth Pastors Only group on Facebook. So good job getting your name out out there…i do plan on book marking your page and look forward to more simple training tips (like the one about using humor) What do I like best? well since it is my first time here I really like the freebies! (Who doesn’t?) but the “hooked” series i just downloaded from your site seems to be at impeccable timing considering some of the recent events in our youth group! So, thank you for that!

    What could be done better? well, i am not sure i saw an rss feeder…oops “there it is” and you have a mac dashboard widget!!!! that is “cool”!
    Thanks, and keep up the awesome passion!

  • Rich

    1. I like the angle this website takes – let’s boil it down from the theoretical to the real.
    2. I would love to have something that would help me see other youth ministers in my area, so I could get to know them.

  • Freebie Friday, yes is my favorite simply because it meets a need for me. I am a volunteer youth worker with a full time job and demanding family. You have provided me with much fodder for my Wednesday nights, and I do greatly appreciate it.

    It is not only the lessons, but the insight and affirmation you give to youth leaders. This is a lonely calling in a lot of ways, but to me is the highest calling. This I believe because the teenage years are the most dangerous time of a person’s life. If they do not have true guidance, they can stray into very bad situations.

    Improving the site? I really can’t say. You visit me every week in my email, and I have subscribed to very few youth ministry letters. You would be happy to know how many times I quote you in my MYF meetings. The only thing that I really don’t have time for is your podcasts. Maybe if you put transcripts from them it would be beneficial for those of us who work other jobs.

    Other than that………..thank you and keep up the amazing work.

    Theresa Jones

  • Mark

    I can not open or save the hooked zip file, I keep getting a message box saying the file is corrupted or invalid

  • @everyone: Thank you for your feedback and input on this site! I want it to be as much of a blessing to you and your ministries as possible, so your input is greatly appreciated.

    @Mark: Someone else said they were having trouble unzipping it, too. It works fine for me, but I’m uploading a fresh version of the file right now just in case. Give it about an hour or so.

  • Dewaine Cooper

    Tim, what I like best about LISM is your heart. Yes, you’re wanting to make youth ministry easier for other ministers, but it’s as if you’re attempting to help us by teaching us what you’ve learned from you’re own mistakes.

    I agree with Victoria in changing the YM Talk time. I’m usually unavailable to call in until about 5pm EST, and the talk is at 2pm. I can listen in most of the time, but I can’t call in.

    Also, I’d recommend asking your wife to chime in (that is, if she’s willing to). I’d love to hear her side of the coin. This could give us YM’s an insight into our spouses thoughts on YM.

  • @Dewaine: Sounds like a couple people would benefit from a different YM Talk time. The reason it’s on Fridays is because that’s my day off and that’s also when my wife is at work, so doing it then doesn’t take away from my full-time ministry nor from my family. However, maybe I’ll try a Thursday evening sometime just to see how it goes. Thanks for the input! That’s exactly what I need.

    And I have asked my wife a couple times to chime in as a guest blogger, but she’s too shy. :) I’ll show her your comment. Maybe that’ll push her to do it. In the meantime, her blog is at

    P.S. My comments don’t count toward the YouthBytes DVD giveaway and neither do additional comments from someone who’s already commented before. So, feel free to reply to comments without sabotaging the giveaway.

  • Hi Tim,

    1) My fav thing is the tech side of the blog. I appreciate when you talk about how to make a video, or website, or the tools you are using.

    2) I’d like to hear more about your process for planning a sermon series, how you schedule your day, organize your office, things like that. I’m always looking for new ideas to help me be more efficient.

    BTW. Thanks for taking the time to make this site, it’s one of my daily “Must reads”.


  • 1. Months ago, I found your site while researching for Small Group questions for our Wednesday evenings. Since then, our ministry uses your stuff primarily!!! And Praise the Lord–aren’t the topics that you are blogging about, EXACTLY what we are faced with! Right down to your recent Dave Ramsey recommendation (ordered it yesterday!). Soooo…….blessings are many at a great Youth budget price!
    2. Really can’t suggest any changes! You already do a great job with all your materials, links, ideas. Just keep in His guidance as you are helping us all!

  • I love Life in Student Ministry…it has given me so many ideas I never would have thought about it. I have used a variety of freebies directly in my ministry.

    As far as ideas on how to improve it go, I did like the library of resources idea I had earlier.

    Thanks Tim

    Larry Darnell

  • 1) Life in SM has given me a tone of ideas, solutions to ministry problems, great resources, and great fwd. to send to my youth staff and leadership. I really appreciate this service… esp. that it is free!

    2) Improvements? I don’t know of any right now. I feel this is such a great resource!!

  • 1. I LOVE Life in Student Ministry! It provides awesome tips for youth leaders and advice to common youth group situations. I love trying out the new games and especially the free curriculum! It has totally blessed our ministry because we have a VERY SLIM budget, and free is always welcome.

    2. Suggestion for the future? Freebies on growing our teens spiritually. How to actually GET our teens to have a quiet time with God, etc. I don’t typically watch the videos because of time constraints, but I’m sure others do.

  • (Our site is under construction) LOL!

    1. Life in Student Ministry has blessed me already and I have only been on here for 1.5 days. I like that the resources that we need as youth leaders are all gathered in one place. As we know financial resources are minimal in youth ministry and it is a blessing to find the tools to make our youth ministries better.
    2. I have not been on here long enough to provide feedback on what can be done better or what is needed on the site specifically but one of the challenges that I find in my search for information is that there are not a lot of resources that are relevant to “urban” youth ministries. I serve in a predominantly urban area to the “hip-hop” generation and we find that the needs of our community of young people are slightly different than those of suburban youth.

  • Ryan

    Maybe this makes me “that guy”, but I just found out about this site and figured I would drop my name in the hat for free stuff in addition to checking out what you are all about. Also, if it helps, Sylvia- the thing that I have found works for the “urban” crowd around our church is leading bible studies based on good Christian Hip Hop Tracks and digging into both the word and it’s modern application through song. Some Artists to check out might be LeCrae, Trip Lee, Da Truth, and SOM. Maybe that’s a start.

  • 1. Freebie Friday! I get a change to try something new out every time it comes up on my RSS feeder. Although I don’t use freebie Friday all the time, it still gives a fresh perspective on what’s out there to use in ministry.

    2. I think it would be cool if you could someway add a youth pastor twitter like function to the side bar. This way we could see what other pastors and leaders are doing right now in their groups. I know when I’m struggling to pull something together its nice to look at what others are doing and see how i can branch off of it.

    Keep it up!


  • ryanb

    1. I appreciate that the topics/discussions/advice/etc. all flow out of a heart for God first. I've heard Chap Clark say "you must first BE the PEOPLE of God before you can DO the WORK of God." I think that is where your heart is as well and it shows up clearly in what you bring to this site.

    2. I like the guest blogging and guest videos. I was thinking, as I watched you and one of your HS leaders at the NYWC, that it would be interesting to hear more from a broad range of youth workers, not just the primary leaders… that may already be happening without my knoweledge, but it crossed my mind that I usually hear from the top-dogs and experts while there are probably many volunteers and other leaders who have experiences to share…

  • @ryanb: Yeah, I would LOVE to feature more people on here doing guest posts, guest videos, guests in LIVE YM Talk, etc. The hard part is getting people to do it. Even when I offered $20 iTunes gift cards for Freebie Friday material and guest posts, I still didn't much response. If you have any ideas for how to encourage people to contribute, let me know.

  • Theresa Rae Gay

    Life in Student Ministry is a HUGE source of ideas both to teach and to absorb. You remind us youth workers that we need to be fed and to go do it! It has inspired me to find other youth workers in my area to start a bible study for US. I compare that to being a parent. If the parent isn’t healthy, rested, fulfilled; he/she cannot care for her/his children.

    How about a way to share/swap curriculum? I am sure many of us have some but how nice with our reducing budget (what is a budget again?) would it be to trade? I am not sure if that is fair to the writers and publishers of the curriculum…

    Thanks for all you do. Your spirit, your humor, your wonderful manner are AWESOME! I want to grow up to be just like you :)


  • @Dewaine – Chime in as in commenting, or writing blogs? I really am more comfortable writing on my own blog, ’cause not as many people read it, mainly family and close friends and a few people I have come to know online. :)

  • I was drawn to this site by Freebie Friday, and check it every week. It is probably my favorite part. However, I also like the video blogs with the wide variety of tips.

    As for what I would suggest to improve…I think it would be really beneficial to everyone to have a “buyer beware” kind of page. Lets face it, there is a ton of Christian material out there, and a ton of it sucks. I think it would be good to have a section dedicated to users and yourself rating new material. The packaging might look great, but if I see a bunch of fellow youth workers saying it wasn’t worth the money, I will stay away.

  • 1. I LOVE the devotions for youth workers. I honestly look forward to them as a break from my normal routine. They're well put together and very honest and to the point.

    2. I love making new friends and networking with people. What if you had a "Meet a fellow worker" section and randomly featured one of your subscribers with your freebie friday post?

  • Righty ho. I've been right through the site now. I love the content and hate the layout, especially the ads. The site's full of great stuff that you only find by digging. A good memory is a help too. I bet you could overhaul the layout and significantly improve access to the content. Power to your elbow.


  • eric

    hey thanks a lot for all of the resources you are a big help to my ministry ***i'd love to wind the youth bytes set***

  • @Ed: I’m definitely not an design expert, so any suggestions you have for improving the layout is appreciated. And you’re right, a lot of my content gets buried pretty quickly. Not really sure how to avoid that either.

    Concerning ads, though, this site costs me a good chunk of change every month, and it continues to go up as traffic continues to increase. I really need a source of income to support it and ads are the best way to do it while keeping everything free. I recommend you subscribe to the RSS feed or email list if you want to avoid the ads but still get the content… Or find me a sponsor who’s willing to front all the expenses for me! :-)

  • I tried to download the Hooks Series from YS and it would not allow we to unzip the file. I tried and tried to download it again and again and nothing. Can you e-mail it to me somehow?

  • @Justin Johnson: Sorry you’re having trouble with it (the download is from Simply Youth Ministry, by the way, not YS). Double-check that you’re using a recent version of your unzipping software. The file you’re downloading is the exact same one that’s offered from Simply YM’s website — it hasn’t been modified in any way, so there shouldn’t be any trouble with it. I know this version of the file has worked for everyone else. I can’t email a 350 MB file, but even if I could it would be this same thing anyway. Maybe try unzipping it on a different computer?

  • 1 – LiSM has been a blessing to me because it keeps me updated about strategies and resources that are being used in the wide-world-of-youth-ministry. I’ve especially appreciated tips about using video elements in ministry, especially for announcements.

    2 – anything you can do to continue alerting me to technology tools that are useful in ministry is great for me. I REALLY appreciated the recent posts on using video for announcements and the simplicity of gathering the tools you recommended.

  • 1. Wow, tough question. I am not sure what I like the best. I like it all. I guess, I love the video post that you do. I enjoy most of the things on Freebie Friday. I can’t live without the advice and resources you offer. I don’t think I would be as far in my ministry without this. I was watching the youth in my church fade out of the picture and felt the call to lead them. (something I never thought I would do) And the church is so happy because they have not seen youth like this in years. I do not know what I am doing (that is he question everyone keeps asking me) All I know is that I care about them, this ministry, and I get as much help and resoures from other groups that I can. (Since I have no training in this area) So I get so much from your site.
    2. You do so much already. Bless us more, is it possible? Well, I have not been able to lisen to the podcast yet so I am not sure about those. The topics sound really good but I just don’t know, maybe podcast aren’t my thing. I also get behind with the Time-Outs since they are every week. I like my volunteers to read them but it is just too much every week.


  • I just got back from our High School Fall Retreat yesterday and tried to download the freebie this morning. It is saying that the file is invalid or corrupt. Is there any way you can check it out for me? In response to your questions for input…

    1. I’m fairly new to this site. So far I have really enjoyed the Freebie Fridays. I have also learned a bit from some of your articles dealing with technology and video. You have encouraged me in my ministry to begin making video announcements and starting a weekly textual “texting” study with our teens.

    2. As far as improvements go, I would have to agree with a few other comments I have read. I’m sure the site could benefit from a cleaner and more thought out design layout… but I’m not a design expert either, so I understand. I also liked the ideo of having a section where youth workers can rate or comment on different ministry materials that are out there so we can help each other find the cream of the crop.

    Thanks for all your hard work and dedication. God bless!

  • @Jeff: As stated above, I don’t have a different copy of the zip file to make available. This is the original, untouched, file straight from Simply YM. Sorry! :-( Can you try unzipping it on a different computer? Also make sure your unzipping program is up-to-date. I’m sorry sorry about the inconvenience, but there’s not much else I can do about it. It works fine for me and every other computer I’ve tried it on.

  • Joy

    Hi all,

    If you’re having problems unzipping the file, and wondering if your unzipping program could be the issue, there is a free one available from Cnet at;pop&cdlPid=10826781. I used it and it worked fine. Good luck :)

  • 1. What do you like best about Life In Student Ministry? How has it blessed your ministry?
    It’s so easy to make mistakes…I love being able to learn from other’s mistakes…we all unite as one body through this…sharing pains, praises, and resources!

    2. A suggestion for how this site can improve in some way. How can it bless you even further? A new feature to add? Maybe a current feature that you don’t find particularly beneficial?
    How about a way to network with youth pastors in the area by zip code? Why do we always pretend we don’t know each other at youth events like Acquire the Fire or Dare 2 Share? We spend all our time breaking up cliques in our youth groups, and yet we form our own.

  • @Kenneth Tram: I like your idea about connecting with other youth workers, but couldn’t you just do that with your local phonebook? Also, already does that.

  • Julie

    1) I like freebie fridays! I browse the archives and just love all there is in it!

    2) I know it’s not that helpful… but I like LISM just the way it is!!

  • Life in Student Ministry has been a huge blessing to me and my church. I just discovered it last week and now it is my home page! I love the articles. I find them very helpful sense I’m only 25 and have only been in youth ministry for about 2 months. I would like to see more about teacher training. My church requires it of me and I think it is essential. I think it would be beneficial to many youth pastors out there to see more articles about this—possibly even ideas about how to do it best on a weekly basis.

  • Travis

    I thought to myself yesterday, maybe I should check out LISM and see what’s new for freebie friday, but I did not. I check this morning and free stuff from SYM expires Monday at Midnight!!! Life will go on. Maybe will take pity on me and I can wind the DVD stuff.

    1. What do I like best? Free Stuff, and often times useful.

    2. How can the site improve? Maybe a dancing baby, but other than that I find it very helpful, easy to navigate.

  • PJ

    dang, i was at a youth retreat and missed the download!

  • Thanks Tim for such a great site.

    1. What I like – I like that you share practical tips on your site. You share what you are doing and what you are learning in an actual youth ministry setting. I also like that you are not at a super mega church. What you share can be implemented at most churches. I also appreciate your presence on twitter and facebook.

    2. What you can improve – honestly, this site is what I think a youth ministry site should look like. Tons of great information, great how-to's, guest posts, free stuff. I like all of it. Since I have been on both sides of the youth pastor/sr. pastor fence, I am always looking for info on building staff relationships. But I really love your site.

    Thanks for all your hard work. May God bless your ministry

  • p

    That's one of the few video series that I really like. : )

    I hope I can be a little bit helpful in the questions at least…

    1. What do you like best about Life In Student Ministry? How has it blessed your ministry?

    The resources, advice, and YM talks (especially recordings)

    2. A suggestion for how this site can improve in some way. How can it bless you even further? A new feature to add? Maybe a current feature that you don’t find particularly beneficial?

    The homepage kind of loads really slowly now, with all the videos and things. Perhaps somehow you could do video responses, to you videos, so we could respond and then if it's beneficial you could link to it?

    Other than that, this site seems to have it all. lol

    Praying for you, God bless!

  • I just ran the random number from to see who gets the 20 DVD set from Out of 40 eligible comments, here's the winning number:

    <img src="; alt="Random number" />

    It looks like DJ is our lucky guy! DJ, I'll send you an email privately to get your mailing address.

    The rest of you, thank you for your feedback. It's very helpful. You've left some great encouragement about what to continue doing on this site, as well as some helpful input on how to improve and tweak it in the future. If you have any other comments to leave, please do so even though the 20 DVD set has been given away.

  • Dj

    1. Great, practical ideas and things to chew on. But honestly, I look most forward to the Monday morning devotions. They really help push me in the right direction each week.

    2. Maybe add a section on theology and how it applies to youth ministry. Sometimes it’s refreshing to get a good deep article/discussion on deep theology.

  • 1. I like the freebies!! THey have helped me on more then one accassion
    2. More forms…doc versions so we can modify them and use them ourselves

New eBookGo
Focused Youth Ministry ebook

85% off!

Focused Youth Ministry

This practical "how to" ebook will walk you through a 30-step process to discovering God's vision for your unique ministry context. The process also shows you how to implement that vision and put metrics in place to evaluate what is moving the vision forward and what isn't.

Price: $12.95 Limited time: $1.99