We are Gideon Lamb and Jeremiah Smallchild, collectively known as God’s Pottery. We’re a Christian acoustic folk duo that uses a unique blend of music, people skills, and Biblical “know- how” to address the issues facing today’s Youth and the Spiritual Community at large. And we are absolutely jazzed
to be addressing you from the pages of this book!
We know the world can be a difficult place sometimes– especially for a young person– and you need the right set of skills to help guide you through. That’s why we– God’s Pottery (or just GP if we’re feeling laid-back and familiar)–decided to write What Would God’s Pottery Do?
and give the gift of our experience, advice, and leadership to the Youth . . . and anyone who’s still growin’ and dreamin’! Can one book really make a difference? Yes, for reading is the language of learning, and learning is the gateway to knowledge.
It seems there are more and more people these days writing “self- help,” “how- to,” and “try- this” books, but few have the qualifications necessary to get through to the Youth in their language
with the lessons so vital to their development. Do we
have the qualifications? Let’s put it this way: You’re not going to find any other self-help books whose authors were awarded “Neatest Ideas” and “Best Listener” ribbons by both their pastor and
their youth pastor. (Seriously, you can ask our pastor, Elaine, or our youth pastor, Gregg.)
We’re going to tackle a lot of ground in the pages to come, because we want to prepare you as best we can for the minefield/shooting range/possible mistake-factory that are your teenage years. We’re going to talk about your family and your friends. We’re going to talk about Drugs and Alcohol. And we’re going to talk about Sexual Intercourse (it’s OK if it makes you giggle a bit at first, but try to shake that out now, because it’s important to be serious to get the most out of this book).
Now, we know that some of these issues can feel scary to talk about, but we have found that taking on issues is like driving in the snow: You have to steer into
the problem. Swimmer and cereal-box model Michael Phelps provides a great example. Phelps had a problem at the 2008 Olympics: He wanted to be the fastest swimmer in the pool, like a flame shooting through the water.
Through intense training and eating way too much, he was able to accomplish his goal, solve his problem, and win a gold medal that he can wear forever. (Unless he’s forced to sell it to pay for his burgeoning marijuana addiction.)
We may not win a gold medal with this book, but if we can help just one person and make just one new friend . . . Brother, we don’t need any gold.
Throughout the book, you’ll find hip photos, charts, and lists that illustrate or further “break down” the topics covered using lingo you Teens will understand. You’ll also hear personal stories and opinions from each of us every now and again in Gideon’s Corner
and Jeremiah’s World.
And since we’ve spent a lot of time with comedians, we thought we’d share some of our comedy skills with you in a recurring section called Laff Trax!
We like to have fun along with our teachings, and it’s OK to laugh sometimes, especially when you need a break from all the intense topics we’ll be covering. And pay attention, because we conclude each chapter with Quizz Whizz!,
a chance to test your comprehension of the material covered.
Following each chapter is a special section for parents called For the Parents!
Teens can skip right over this section, since it’s filled with boring “adult” material, and not the cool, edgy information you’ll find in the rest of the book.
Besides, a lot of this stuff would be inappropriate for a Teen to read–like a Teacher’s Notes section of a textbook that has all the answers to the tests–so
just skip right over it and move on to the next chapter. Seriously, please don’t
read this section if you’re a Teen.
You’re probably eager to “get your canoe in the water” and start “paddling through the rapids” of this book, so we’ll “shove you off” with a story:Once there was this boy in junior high school who rode his motor-bike into the sewage plant and landed in a treatment vat, and he had to get hosed off by the Environmental Protection Agency. After they toweled him off, they told him he would have to go away to a juvenile delinquent prison! “What about my motor-bike?” he asked. “Once we pull it out of the treatment vat,” they said, “we’re going to hose it down, and then we’ll turn it over to the cops, since it was used in your crime spree.” The boy was devastated, but he vowed that he would get his motor-bike back from the cops as soon as he got out of the teen prison.
While he was “on ice,” the boy developed a taste for fatty foods and a habit for dice games, so he became an overweight gambler by the time he was released, at age eighteen. He went to the police station with all of his dirty gambling winnings from prison and bought back his motor-bike, which the police had been keeping for him all these years. “All sales final,” said the police. “Fine with me,” said the boy.
As he stood over the bike, about to sit down and ride away, the police asked him, “What about a helmet?” “Nah, I don’t need a helmet!” said the boy. And he sat down, but because he was much older and had eaten so much fatty food in prison, he was so heavy that he crushed the motor-bike.
“Hey, I want my money back!” he cried. “Sorry, all sales final,” said the police. And so the boy had to walk home. But since he was a gambler, he ended up back in prison pretty quickly anyway–adult prison. And all because he rode his motor- bike into the sewage plant when he was in junior high.
Do you see why it’s so important not to mess up when you’re younger? One wrong move, and you could end up in a sewage treatment vat, and then in prison. There will be many times as a Teen where you’ll face tough situations, and you need to have a sense of how you’ll respond. If you find yourself in a spot where you’re not quite sure what to do, take a second and ask yourself What would God’s Pottery do?
You’re about to find out.
Gideon and Jeremiah
Excerpted from What Would God's Pottery Do? by Gideon Lamb and Jeremiah Smallchild. Copyright © 2009 by Gideon Lamb. Excerpted by permission of Three Rivers Press, a division of Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.