As a teenager there are many things that fight for your attention or focus: sports, dating, school, having a good time, driving a car, college, and many other things. Your parents start to give you some freedom to choose what you would like do with your time and energy. School takes up part of your time with homework, projects, and tests or quizzes. You may decide to get involved in a sports program, or you may begin working a job as a young person. You will realize as teenager, that you cannot do everything and that you must prioritize the things that are available for you to do.
As a teenager in church, having a relationship with God will be emphasized. Most teenagers will agree that this is important, but does that always move you to action? I know that I did not always read my Bible and pray as a teenager. Just because you are in church or your parents have a relationship with God does not guarantee that you will have a relationship with God.
Judges 2:10 “And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers: and there arose another generation after them, which knew not the LORD, nor yet the works which he had done for Israel.”
As a teenager you have to decide whether you are going to know God, or be satisfied with hearing other people tell you about Him! I decided as a teenager that I wanted to know God for myself. But how do you accomplish this, how do you get to know God?
When I was a teenager, my youth pastor, Eddie Lapina, gave our youth group a challenge to read the entire Bible through before we turned 18. I began thinking about what he had challenged us to do. Yes that was a lot of reading, but I had several years to accomplish this task. I decided that I would take the challenge and read the Bible all the way through. As a teenager, I have to admit there were quite a few times that I stopped reading the Bible for a while, but before I turned 18 I had read through the entire Bible. Many teenagers stop reading their Bible and just give up. God knows that you will stop or forget to read the Bible, but He wants us to restart each time that we stop! Proverbs 24:16
It is also important that we learn to get things from God as a teenager. There are two specific things that stick out to me from my teen years in the area of prayer. During my junior year, one of our teens in our youth group started a prayer meeting during lunch. Several times a week we would get together and pray for our class during our lunch period. This meeting kept me accountable to pray consistently. That same year one of my friends decided to have an all night prayer meeting at his house. We were going to meet together and pray for camp which was the following week. I remember wondering how we would pray all night long! I remember gathering around the campfire that night at my friend’s house and starting to pray. We prayed by the fire together, we walked around his property and prayed by ourselves, and came back together and finished praying by the fire. I remember feeling very close to God that night, and the following week of camp was incredible! Jeremiah 33:3
I learned as a teenager how it feels to get close to God. I was not perfect, I still did dumb things and got into trouble like everyone else. But as I got close to God, there were several times that I got to see God use me! Do you want to feel that closeness with God, and see Him use you as a teenager? Do you want to see truth out of His Word as you read? Don’t wait until you become an adult to get close to Him, walk with Him now. James 4:8