How to Guide Your Teenager in 3 Steps

How to guide your teenager


The problem(s): You aren’t their friend. They aren't your mini-me. You aren’t exactly the same. 
You don’t want to shut them down or shut them out, but you don’t want them to get hurt or make terrible decisions. 
You want them to live a happy life. 
You want them to go to Heaven. 

How to guide them:

1. Accept that you are not in control of their life. 

You have no control over the decisions they will make. You do not control their heart and if they decide to follow God. At a conference I attended, the speaker asked everyone to raise their hand if they were raised in a Christian home. Half of the people in the room raised their hand. The point of the demonstration was that the Lord brought them to himself. He doesn’t even need you! So know that you are not the end all be all for your child’s eternity. God is in control. That being said, he made you the parent. Your child has half of your genes and half of their other parents’ genes. This makes you predisposed to get them sometimes when other people don’t.

2.Provide them with discipline (defined as teaching).

Set clear expectations for their grades, their curfew, who they spend their time with, and what they spend their time doing. Focus on the Do’s, not the don’t do’s. Part of this should be resting in ways that makes them feel alive. Help them figure out who they were created to be.Set consequences that reflect life in the real world, as they are almost there. Let them pay for stuff that is a direct result of their behavior.

3. Be an example they can follow. 

They are watching what you do, how you live, how your face contours when you are confused, discouraged, frustrated. They see where you spend your time. They see how your spend your money. Your behavior will set the ultimate bar for their life.