What’s your favorite color, tv show, or food? Do your teens know?
How much life are you sharing with your teen?
And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.
If we don’t first take the initiative to ask, seek, or knock, we receive nothing in return. Just like your teens, because they are physically present doesn’t mean they will interact with you. Unless you ask, seek, and knock you will not have the relationship that is required with your teens when difficult conversations are required. Much like the father, if we don’t ask, seek, & knock, it is very difficult to know how to interact with the father.
Smart phones, tv, social media, & music are quickly replacing the need for interaction let alone parental interaction because our teens are getting the information, they “think” they need from these sources. Teens learn best by example. Include your teens making decisions and show them how they are part of the family unit when it comes to:
1. Spiritual atmosphere around the house
2. Life struggles
3. Helping vs always just consuming
5. Dating / Courting / Marriage
I talk with my children routinely about the spiritual atmosphere when they return from friends houses. It is amazing how, spiritual things attach themselves and cause strife upon a teens return and upset the balance in my home. My children have input into how we solve our normal parental problems. How to get everyone to and from school, sports, etc. to where some of them sit at school and extra hour until the other sibling finishes their activity to save driving back and forth. How to increase our wealth, be financially responsible, and budget in a way that allows my children to have little debt when finishing college. How to pick a potential person to date. How to talk and not use texting.
All these are examples of topics and conversations that I have with my children. And most of the direction we go as a family is based on the decisions my children have made and not myself or my wife. Yes, they help set the budget, figure out how to raise the farm animals, what the dating rules are, and what is and isn’t ok when it comes to family conflict. Was it easy to start out doing……DEFINITELY NOT, but they are growing into an understanding and a transparency that couldn’t bring me and my wife more peace.
Challenge yourself to sit down with your teen and talk about something you never have before.
You never know….you may learn something about yourself and them
Brian & Sarah Hughes
Youth Pastors NCWC