• Parenting with Hope

Their Safe Place

In this month’s session we talk about how teens are notorious for saving their raging fits for you and your home. Friendship issues, stress from school and hormones on hyper-drive can make your teen seem like they have transformed into an alien from another galaxy. No, your teen hasn’t been abducted! They are just trying to navigate their world that feels out of control.

There are so many places and environments your teen has to hold his or her emotions together, and their home is the one place they feel safe to let down their guard and release what may be pent up inside. For you as the parent, however, this is a test of faith and patience!

Be encouraged, however, and hang on to the promises in God’s Word that He loves your teen more than you do. He has a plan and a purpose for them, and though you might not be able to see it now, you can trust in the One who does. Hebrews 4:13 says, “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.”

These Online Parenting Classes are meant to give you tools and resources for the day-to-day parenting issues that surface. However, they are also meant to encourage you in your walk with God. When you spend time with God and His Word, you’ll be able to better manage those times when you are at a loss for what to do with your teen.

Now I want to focus on you, the parent. We’ve been talking this month about your teenagers and how you and your home are the only places they might feel safe to be themselves, let down their guard and release frustrations. Of course, this is where they should feel safe enough to vent! But it can be frustrating for the parent. I know you want to fix the problem, but sometimes you’ll need to let them process their stress.

When you feel like you are at your wits end, and there is no easy solution for your teenager’s frustration, it’s time to get on your knees. Prayer is the harder work, but it is the most effective.

Find prayer warriors to “fight” the battle with you—ultimately, your teenagers are experiencing a spiritual battle, so you need to fight for them with spiritual weapons. Ask God for His wisdom to know how to pray. In the book of Psalms, it says, “Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed.

Then they were glad that the waters were quiet, and he brought them to their desired haven” (1-7:28–30).

In these three verses, we are given some great encouragement. The Israelites “cried out to God,” and He “delivered them from their distress.” Stand in the gap through prayer, crying out to God for your teen’s distress—and ask Him to “hush” the raging waters in their life and make them “quiet.”

And, don’t be afraid to tell your teenager you are praying for him/her. Saying something like, “I wish I could make things better for you. I don’t know what to do to help, but I want you to know I’m praying for you every day,” is a powerful way to let your teen know you love them.

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