The Challenge Of Raising Christian Teens

Stating that parents sometimes have a tendency to water down their faith – if they acknowledge it all – is hardly a novel statement.

Author and theology professor Kenda Dean stated that if that is what presented to teens in personal relationships and corporate worship settings, than Christian adults are getting what they deserve when their kids abandon or largely ignore faith when they reach adulthood.

“If this is the God they're seeing in church, they are right to leave us in the dust,” Dean says. “Churches don't give them enough to be passionate about.”

Dean talks about this in her book “Almost Christian” and CNN blog talks in detail about how teens by and large gravitate toward a concept of God that is prompting them to be nice and service-oriented, even if the service is humanitarian without a speck of a faith base.

These concepts bring up an altogether larger and more important question about what to teach kids about faith and why. The blog suggests embracing “radical” – or perhaps in another lens counter-cultural – actions such as turning down a high-paying job for faith-related reasons and then explaining why to your kids.

In my mind, the why is the biggest piece of the puzzle, whether you are teaching your kids about Jesus or perhaps teaching them how to solve a word problem on their math homework. It’s easy to come up with the answer (i.e. Jesus is the Son of God, it will take 32 minutes for the trains to cross paths on the line between Cincinnati and Cleveland), but relevance comes from the application of the steps in between.

Is that you convoluted, complicated or, perhaps, just dead wrong? I welcome your comments.

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