Editor’s Note: This is one of a series of 30 Stories that appeared in the 100th edition of Youth Leaders Only. Make sure you check out the other great stories from this special edition celebrating 30 years of YLO.
In 1997 I was a young, struggling senior pastor in a small struggling church. One day I received a piece of “junk mail” that caught my eye—mostly because it came with some free music. It was from a company called interlínc, and promised all the best Christian music delivered right to my door. Prior to that moment I had never heard of that company, but I was (and still am) a huge fan of Christian music. So I grabbed the phone and dialed the number. Maybe I’m skeptical, or maybe I got burned one too many times on those CD clubs of the ’80’s. Believe me, this deal sounded too good to be true and I needed to find out what the catch was. After a very short call to interlínc and even shorter conversation with my wife, we were all in!
Unfortunately, the church board didn’t share my enthusiasm or my love for that “Christian rock” music. They didn’t want a youth group and certainly didn’t want to pay for curriculum for “those kids.” They actually made “no playing games in the church” an official policy. But, I would not be deterred. I opened my wallet and we became members with our own money—and waited for the first box to arrive.
I’ll never forget receiving that first box. It was like Christmas morning. I couldn’t believe everything I was getting. That brown box was stuffed with great music, brand new music videos, solid Bible studies, and a ton of FREE stuff!
Since that day, interlínc has been an intricate part of my ministry. The Bible studies are so much more than just Bible studies. Each one is everything I need for the meeting—a theme, an objective, a game, and a relevant lesson that allows me to speak truth into the lives of my students.
And as a fan of Christian music, I love how easy being a member of Youth Leaders Only makes it for me to introduce my students to new music and new bands. We always have music playing. I can’t tell you how many times a student has stopped playing Ping-Pong or Pool, listened to a song, and asked me, “Who is this?”And, thanks to interlínc, I’ve known the answer!
I now have a library of music and a collection of music videos that spans two decades. I still wait like a kid on Christmas for the UPS man to deliver the latest box.
Every time I start to dig through the box, I stop and think to myself, “This all started with the best ‘Junk Mail’ ever!”