We have been considering the topic of developing Christ-honoring teens in our homes. Let’s review the last couple of points since they have been spread over a month of discussion. We considered the aspect of teenagers having an abundance of energy. Paul instructed Timothy not to let others despise his youth, especially when it came to not wasting the energy that he had in this time period of his life. We then considered that teenagers have ample time. They are not burdened down with all of the responsibilities of jobs, financial responsibilities, and family obligations. A young person should use the time given him to be diligent in learning the doctrines of God’s Word and learning skills that will benefit him later in life.
We now come to our final thought in regard to a young person in I Timothy 4. Let’s look at verse 15. The Bible says, “Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all.” Teenagers have alert minds. You may say, “In our culture, this is not true.” It is sad that, in our culture, the average teenager has been sapped of an alert mind and made to be dull and lethargic. The entertainment industry has mesmerized the average young person and adult and has made them nothing more than “useless idiots,” to quote a famous dictator.
How does a young person have an alert mind? Sit down with a group of young people sometime and see if you don’t get lost with the fast pace of their conversation. They are fast on their feet and quick with their wits.
Young people can think faster, sharper, and more progressively than adults. Yet, how many of a young person’s thoughts are wasted? In class, their mind is not on the lesson but on a girl or boy, sports, cars, or their next activity. In fact, students know more sports statistics, rock musicians, and rock songs than they know Scripture verses or Bible characters. Sharply contrasting is the Bible’s plan for a proper thought life:
Psalm 94:11 – God knows your thoughts
II Corinthians 10:5 – Bring every thought into captivity
II Timothy 2:15 – Study to show thyself approved unto God
As a young person, are you trying to stretch your mind or are you trying to find the simplest books for a book report? Do you exercise your mind in academics and in spiritual learning? A young person who spends the majority of their time watching TV or being entertained by some program will never learn to think. This is why some teenagers hate school. A right school program will require that a young person spend some time using his mind in research. It isn’t exciting. It is deliberately hard. It is meant to stimulate the student’s mind and make it work. It requires that a young person get his mind out of “sleep” mode and engage in “mind” work. As parents, and as a church, let’s make sure we don’t underestimate the minds of our teens. Let’s make their minds work and put disciplines in place, so our young people can be examples in their youth.