"Be gracious in your speech. The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out." Colossians 4:6 MSG
Thoughts for Today
Early adolescence includes young people from 11 to 14 years of age. Contrary to popular thought, adolescence does not have to be a time of rebellion or rejection of earlier teaching. The key to parenting an adolescent is communication. If you keep the lines of communication with your child open, almost any disagreement can be resolved, or any difficulty overcome.
Family meal times continue to be important times for family conversation. Adolescents often try to avoid those times. It would be reasonable to insist on at least three (and preferably five) evening meals per week with all family members present. Discuss family issues, school issues, community issues, politics, God, and spiritual issues. Encourage your teen to think through issues and offer opinions.
Have real conversation with your teenager--don't just voice demands or criticism. Ask for, and respect, your teen's opinions, even if you disagree. Share confidences, dreams, mistakes you have made, feelings. Do not withdraw from your child, even if he or she attempts to withdraw from you.
Father, I find it so easy to focus on the negatives in my teen's life, easy to jump on those things without listening. Help me to speak in a way that will bring out the best in my child. Help me to not put him down, not cut him out. In Jesus' name …
These thoughts were drawn from…
Godly Parenting: Parenting Skills at Each Stage of Growth by N. Elizabeth Holland, M.D. This study addresses parenting skills from the time of conception until the child has reached adulthood. It suggests methods for raising healthy, godly children in an increasingly secular society. Specific emphasis is placed on communication and teaching skills, discipline, protection and sexual issues at each age. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups, and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.
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