Teenagers

140 posts

Redemptive Purposes in Your Teen’s Depression

The truth that God can work good out of this season of depression (Romans 8: 28) is a consolation to use sensitively. However, it’s not without biblical merit to suggest that God intends to use this season of suffering to spiritually refine both you and your teen. Let’s briefly consider three purposes. First, you may find that your teen’s depression serves as an opportunity for you to share the gospel with him or her. If your child has yet to place his or her hope in Christ, now is the time to extend God’s gracious invitation. It may be God’s plan that your teen comes to saving faith in Jesus because of this trial (Psalm 119:71). If your teen doesn’t […]

Understanding Your Teen’s Depression

While it can be tempting to view your teen’s depression as pouting, or simply the result of hormone fluctuations, the truth is that your child’s despondency is an outward expression of internal unrest. It can be tempting to grow impatient with your teen’s emotional instability. Oftentimes, in frustration, parents may resort to trite slogans and superficial encouragements. Even so, a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” mentality is desperately insufficient to help our teens. In fact, any strategy that invites us to rely upon our own willpower for change is a limited resource at best, and painfully destructive at worst, “for not by might shall a man prevail” (1 Samuel 2:9). It’s important to view depression through a biblical lens. […]

The Devastation of a Wandering Heart

Solomon warned about the destruction of an unguarded, wandering heart in Proverbs 4:20-27. Verse 23 gets most of the attention in this passage: Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. However it is important not to miss the warning that follows to keep your feet and eyes, that is, your heart and your body, from wandering away from what is right: Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil. Solomon is retelling the hard lessons he learned from his father, […]

Which Question Will Your Teenager Answer?

An unexpected temptation arises in the life of your teenager.  She was not planning to make a life-altering decision, but the moment arrived nonetheless.  When this moment occurs, your teenager will ask one of two questions: “What do I want to do?” “What does God want me to do?” Joseph was confronted by a passionate and powerful woman demanding to have sex.  He was alone in a pagan land.  Rejecting the advances of this woman would surely bring both pleasant and unpleasant consequences. Yet he had just one question on his mind: How could I do such a wicked thing and sin against God? So, Joseph literally ran from the temptation before him. He was more motivated by what would […]

The Great Lie

Men, pornography is a lie. You think you are attracted to it because of sexual temptation.  That is a lie of the enemy! Yes, the lure is about sexual lust is real. But the attraction to pornography is also about the degradation and humiliation of women for your own lusts. Indulging in pornography promotes and aids human trafficking, slavery, physical abuse, emotional abuse, rape and, in some cases, death. In short, viewing of pornography is finding pleasure in the slavery and destruction of women. The enemy has deceived you into thinking that pornography is about fulfilling your sexual fantasies and lusts. The enemy is laughing all the way to hell as, literally, tens of millions of men and women believe […]

A Conversation With a Teenager

Mom: “Stop bothering your sister.” Josh: “Why?” Mom: “Because it upsets her.” Josh: “Good, she needs to be upset. It’s what she does to me!” Mom: “God says you should be nice to her.” Josh: “Well, then, you should tell her to try being nice. It’s not like I am hurting her or anything.” Mom: “But that is not how it works. You should do what God wants no matter how your sister responds.”  Josh: “So, what do I do when you get mad and yell at me?” Josh: “You shouldn’t talk to me like that!” Josh: “Why? I am not being disrespectful or mad, I just asked you a question.” Mom: “You just shouldn’t. Look I have to take […]

Motivation and Your Teenager

Kevin, a teenage boy, has an opportunity to be alone with Tiffany, a girl that he is attracted to. If he thinks that he might get caught and his parents will find out, or that he might get a sexually-transmitted disease, he might decide not to be with her. However, suppose he thinks no one will find out and he can use protection to keep him safe. In addition, he and Tiffany have devised the “perfect” plan to hide their encounter. Thus, the fear of consequence fades against the powerful lure of temptation. It is no secret teenagers face powerful temptations.  Parents want to make sure that consequences are in place to help protect their children. And it is good […]

Safety and Your Children

“Be safe!” This is frequently the last thing you say to your children when they leave the house. Often the plan for their safety doesn’t go much beyond theses words. Yes, you have taught them to be good drivers, you have told them which situations they should avoid, and you may have even encouraged them to pray for God’s protection. But in your heart, if you think too long about it, there is a nagging fear for your children’s safety, a fear that goes beyond just physical safety. You hope they will be make safe choices in selecting friends and in the activities they do.  However, you know the true dangers your children face. They are the same ones that […]

Short Answers

You observe your teenager talking non-stop with friends. Then you think about the typical conversations that you have had with your son or daughter. Instead of a lively back and forth your attempts at conversation tend to collapse into strained monosyllables.: “Did you have a good day?” “Sort of.” “How was your test?” “Okay.” “Do you have homework?” “Maybe.” “Do you have plans this weekend?” “Not sure.” “Is anything bothering you?” “No.” “Did you clean your room?” “Not yet.” “I thought maybe we could talk later on.” “Why?” “What did you think of the sermon?” “It was okay.” “Why are you so hard to talk to?” “Aw, mom.” You attempt to support your teenager with a well-intended comment of encouragement […]

Consequences: Punishment Or Nourishment?

What kind of correction works best with teenagers? This is a generational quandary! What is the best way to positively address the areas in their lives where they need growth and direction? The time-honored favorite method of correction is consequences! But, the issue is what kind of consequences? If consequences nourish and build up a young person, this is a good thing and qualifies as biblical discipline. In case you are questioning where the idea of nourishment comes from, look with me at Ephesians 6:4: “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” The English words “bring them up” are a translation of the greek word which means […]