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It is a normal thing for teens to question their faith. Almost every teenager I know goes through some doubts. It might be doubting God’s love or doubting that the Bible is the Word of God or doubting that Jesus rose from the dead.
Parents, welcome questions from your teenagers. If you don’t know the answer to “How can I know that Jesus rose from the dead?” or “Why does evil exist?” then tell your teen you will get them an answer.
During the teenage years, young men and women often wrestle with God.
- Is He there?
- Does He love them?
- Is His Word true?
- Are the really saved?
Never belittle someone’s doubts or genuine questions, especially those of your own child.
Cultivate an atmosphere where your sons and daughters can talk to you about anything. Also, pray for them. Remember Jesus loves them more than we do.
Build a Solid Relationship
Your relationship with your son or daughter during their teen and young adult years is critical. Do whatever you have to so that it is strong and healthy. Make time in your schedule to go out to lunch, grab a cup of coffee, play a game of tennis, or take a walk around the block together.
This is a scary time in many young people’s lives as they make choices that will affect the rest of their lives. Be their biggest fan and cheer them on to victory in Jesus!
Always find good things in them to affirm and compliment, even if you have to reach.
Many young people in our day and age are abandoning the faith so stand strong in prayer and fasting, yes I said fasting, for your sons and daughters.
The most important thing about your children is that they know Jesus and experience his grace, mercy, and love. Pray for them. God answers prayer!
Love them with affection, time, compliments, gifts, and showing interest in their lives and friends. Make time!
Mentor Your Teen
One thing that has meant a lot in our home is mentoring time, either informal or formal times.
Riding to the YMCA every morning to workout, Rose and I would talk on the way and pray on the way home. These moments weren’t large amounts of time, but they were consistent and bore much fruit.
Mike met weekly with our son to study the Word of God, pray, and talk. It impacted his life. You can purchase the discipleship material he created, The Making of Real Men at Amazon.
Whether it’s going through a Bible study, digging into the Scriptures, or just talking, spend purposeful time with your teens and young adults.
Use Christian Apologetics Resources
In I Peter 3:15, God tells us, “In your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect” (ESV).
Gently and while showing our teens love and respect, we can share answers with them by using these excellent Christian apologetics resources.
There are so many resources out that you can use to answer their questions or to strengthen their faith in the midst of doubts.
Here are some books that we have used with our teenagers and highly recommend. My children read these books in high school:
More than a Carpenter by Josh McDowell is a short book on apologetics to answer questions like “Was Jesus really God?” and “Did He really rise from the dead?” You can purchase More Than a Carpenter at Amazon.
Cold Case Christianity by J. Warner Wallace is an exciting way to explore Christianity. I love this book! A detective examines the “crime scene” of faith. You can purchase Cold Case Christianity at Amazon.
Evidence that Demands a Verdict by Josh McDowell is a massively huge book but covers every questions a teen could possibly have—a great resource for every Christian home. You can purchase Evidence That Demands a Verdict at Amazon.
Understanding the Times by David Noebel covers Christian, Muslim, New Age, Humanist, Marxist, and Post-Modern worldviews in all the major academic disciplines like law, sociology, economics, pyschology, etc. You can purchase Understanding the Times at Amazon.
We also use videos to minister to the heart of our children. Here are some DVD series we watch in High School
Demolishing Strongholds DVD series is great series the explains worldview and why it’s important, including creation science. You can purchase Demolishing Strongholds at Amazon.
How Then Shall We Live with Frances Schaeffer is a DVD series that covers worldview through history by showing how worldview is expressed through the arts, music, architecture, and literature. This is an older film, but awesome! You can purchase How Then Shall We Live at Amazon.
Something you can do ahead of the teen years is to start memorizing as much Scripture as possible. I regret we did not memorize more Bible verses and passages when the kids were little.
This Word, hidden in young hearts, will remind them of truth during times of doubt and unbelief.
If you didn’t start early, then start now, memorize Scripture with your teen, especially in the areas of greatest need.
For example, if he is doubting God’s love, memorize Romans 8. If she is wondering if God created the world, memorize Colossians 1:16.
Stay the Course!
Don’t give up and don’t waver!
Stand strong in faith for breakthrough in your teen’s life! God answers prayer so pray and fast. Keep loving your teen. Offer helpful resources and study God’s Word together.
I know I said this before but remember: Jesus loves your teen more than you do! Stand in faith for your teen!