Mark Twain said, “When a child turns thirteen, put them in a barrel and feed them through a hole. When they get to be sixteen, plug up the hole.” That’s not a very positive view of parenting teens, but one that everyone can relate to. Parenting teens isn’t easy.
David Gelman writes, “Today’s teenagers face more adult-type stresses than their predecessors did, at a time when adults are much less available to help them.” So here are a few suggestions:
* Education is not the goal, wisdom is. Education helps, but teaching kids to sort out information is the key.
* Teach them how to take care of their bodies with a good diet and good exercise. And remember – safe sex isn’t safe, only abstinence is.
* Help them develop a relationship with God. Recognize that much of their development will come from the relationship with the God they see in you.
* Teach them that there are moral absolutes based on Scripture. Teens need these guidelines.
* Help them make wise decisions about the company they keep. Positive peer pressure is a key.
* Pray. Teens, and parents of teens, need lots of prayer!