This is one of the purposes for my new book, Crash Course. I noticed a lot of good Christian kids who have pledged their lives to serve God in an emotional but ambiguous way and really have no plan for moving forward. I divided this book up into 5 sections of 20, easy-to-read devotional segments. The five sections cover the five most important areas of life:

Doctrine: What I Believe and Why
Decisions: How to Make Good Choices
Direction: What Should I Do With My Life?
Devotion: Staying True in a World of Lies
Delight: Finding Joy in a Hard World.

Solomon reminds us that "to everything there is a season" (Ecclesiastes 3:1). The season of childhood is to be cherished, enjoyed, and treasured. Come to the Darling house at any given time and you'll hear the sweet sounds of children's laughter. I believe the laughter of children is important and warms the heart of God. I'm tickled at the things my 5 year old, 11/2 year old, and my four-month old do.

But if their still doing those at 18, nobody will be laughing. We'll be crying. Paul said, part of God's plan is to "put away childish things" (1 Corinthians 13:11).

Ultimately, our kids will grow to make their own decisions. They will be accountable to God and God alone. But along the way, we shouldn't be afraid to invest in them the important and necessarily tools of maturity, responsibility, and hard work.

These are assets that will serve them well as they follow Christ's calling upon their lives.

Daniel Darling is an author and pastor with a passion for young people. He is the author of Teen People of the Bible, a 100-day devotional for teens. Visit him on Facebook by clicking here, or at