Insyder – Jason Huckaby
InsideOut: How many students are in TheLink?
Jason Huckaby: About 175
IO: How long have you been in youth ministry?
JH: That’s an interesting question because I was teaching Sunday School while I was still a student myself. So I have been around students since I was a student. My youth pastor, Roy Duke, asked me to work on his youth committee when I was in college. I have been student pastor at The Pentecostal Church (TPC) in Memphis for around eight years
IO: Give us some insight behind your group’s name.
JH: We place a high priority on unity here at TPC. Pastor Black always has the congregation hold hands as he closes each sermon. When choosing a name for our youth group, we wanted the name to reflect unity. We wanted our students to be “linked” together. Thus, the name “TheLink.”
IO: What does an average week look like for TheLink?
JH: Um…really busy! Every Monday night is reserved as family night so you will not find anything happening here on campus. Each Tuesday, from 7:15 PM until 8:00 PM, our students gather for Link prayer. On Wednesday, we have our midweek “Uplink” service. Thursdays are usually free for Bible studies and often choir rehearsal. On Fridays, TheLink has youth service or youth activity night.
IO: What is your favorite TheLink event?
JH: That’s a difficult question to answer because our students know how to have great church and lots of fun—so every event is exciting. However, we just got home from our “Away From The Noise” retreat, which was really fun. It was a great balance of prayer, worship (spiritual time), and then just a fun time of hanging out, playing games, and fellowship.
IO: Where is your students’ favorite place to eat?
JH: Red Robin, Mellow Mushroom, McAlisters, and Chick-fil-a
IO: I know you’ve been involved with several midnight madness events. What’s the craziest thing you’ve done at one?
JH: My favorite thing is to watch those students spew like Mt. St. Helens—so I’ve really put together some nasty concoctions and had them bob for apples, onions, Vienna Sausages, and even pigs’ feet!
IO: What have you found to be the best tool for witnessing? Is it a Bible study, a Facebook invite, etc?
JH: There is nothing better than a personal testimony. I am frequently amazed by the power of a personal invitation. There was a young lady who expressed her frustration to me over her many spurned invitations. She said, “Brother Huck, I keep inviting people, but they never come to church!” I reminded her that if she would sow, she would reap. That week at our BYOF service, her friend received the Holy Ghost. People are won to God through personal invitations. Here at TPC, we incorporate all other forms of evangelism as well—website, social media, Bible Studies, and so on.
IO: What has God been dealing with your students about lately?
JH: We have been talking much about prayer lately. All great revivals began with prayer meetings.
IO: Describe the importance of clinging to our Apostolic identity. In what ways can we do that?
JH: I had a teacher come into my classroom at our public high school and ask if I would have all of our Pentecostal girls wear their uncut hair down for a group yearbook photo. The yearbook sponsors then put the photo on the back cover of our public high school yearbook. The sponsor stated that she had never seen such godly people with what she called “great faith.” We have won numbers of students from that high school over the years. We don’t have to compromise our Apostolic identity, gender distinctions, uncut hair, and separation from the world.
Matthew 5:14 reads, “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid”. If we are constantly trying to blend into the culture, we can’t be seen and we become just another denomination in our school or community. However, when we cling to our Apostolic doctrines, we become the alternative to mundane, powerless Christianity.