Thursday, November 10, 2011

An Open Letter To Parents Who Deal With Rebellious Minds

Dear parent,

I understand that you're having problems with your teenager. He or she isn't Christian or isn't what you raised them to be. You find their beliefs, or lack thereof, disappointing and disrespectful. Their new outlook threatens what you hold sacred. How do you react? You can show them who's boss; you can fire back against their rebellion with restrictions and criticisms. Please don't; I don't think that will help.

Parent, I need you to calm down before you hurt yourself and hurt your kid. Remember, your relationship with your child is much more important than any disappointment you feel. Your adolescent is becoming an adult. You cannot discipline someone into having faith. A stronger approach is needed. Adolescents aren't children anymore, you're going to have to show them how adults act. Treat them like an intelligent adult you are trying to win for Christ, not like a misbehaving child. Their ideas hurt you, but please remember that your relationship with your child is more important than how they are making you feel at the moment. Treat them with love and maturity. Continue to express your faith while respecting theirs, and you'll win their respect. If you insult their beliefs, demean them, or punish them for their unbelief you will lose both their trust and respect. If they don't trust you, they are not going ask you for help when their schema fails them. Your teenager, is only a teenager. God willing, you still have decades left in which to love them into God's kingdom. If you focus on winning arguments instead of winning souls you will lose both. Romans 2:4 asks “. . . do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?” May God's kindness work in and through you to lead your beloved closer to God.

Your brother,


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