Home Forums Re: Raising teenagers

#2451

With a 19 yr old, 16 yr old and 14 yr old, I can only say we insist on following rules, consideration for others (esp. elders), doing chores and we reward with privileges: to spend time with friends, have friends over, play electronic games, play online “approved” games, spending time with us their parents. They have to go to church as long as they live under our roof, and they have to participate there…no bringing electronic hand held games to play, or ignoring what is happening during the service. We eat together, praying before meals, spend time together in the later evening hours. We take family trips to hike or be tourists on Sundays, praying together for safe travel as we leave town in our vehicle.

They have too many activities, between school, jobs and daily get-togethers with their friends to give up the only times we have together as a family-meals and Sunday trips. We’ve always talked about why our rules are based on God’s Word to us and the consequences God has for disobedience to Him or to parents. Reminding them now is often annoying for them to hear as they leave for various activities, but still necessary for them to be reminded of. Reminding them daily to pray to thank God for blessings they have or for help when they need it is also annoying for them most days but occasionally we get a thank you, I forgot I could depend on God if I only talked to Him. They have many experiences of how God has stepped in and protected them or us as a family, provided what was asked for or needed even when it wasn’t taken to God in prayer and even they can see it is too much to be coincidental. If we hadn’t had God as a focus from the beginning I’m not sure they would have those reflections to look back on to give them faith as teens.

We still have challenging areas with them, esp. challenging days and that’s probably the way it has always been and will always be, until they mature and are adults. Hope this has helped.

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