What we believe is important. And while our beliefs may evolve throughout our lives, our teen years are often a time when we intensely engage with the formation of many of our core beliefs. Parents, peers, teachers, coaches, pastors, social media, the internet, books - all these influences shape our personalities, temperaments, and beliefs during our early years. As teens. we begin to sort through those influences to claim what we believe - and hopefully to live so that our actions reflect those beliefs.
What if during this crucial time of belief formation, we were more intentional about exploring and claiming our faith? Then perhaps we too would be able to say with Joshua's confidence that "I will serve the Lord," or to proclaim with Peter's certainty that Jesus is "the Christ sent from God." (Luke 9:20b)
Our beliefs define us. Begin now to explore your faith, to talk with your mentors, to ask faith questions, and to claim what you believe. I pray that you and I will be defined by a deep and abiding belief in God that will guide us throughout our lives.
Ask your child...
Has anyone asked you what you believe?
Challenge your child...
Find a few friends with whom you can practice having open conversations about your faith. Discuss the devotions you've read this week or what your believe about God, Jesus, the Bible, of the church. Create an open and respectful space for dialogue and listen without interrupting.
Write your own statement of faith. See page 22 in the Devozine for examples.
Father, give me the courage to tell others what I believe, without fear of judgment or condemnation. Amen.