Wisdom for the Teen Years: Day Five
communication & technology: Jesus doesn’t care about your likes
By Heather Koppe
Read Romans 12:2, 2 Corinthians 10:5, Philippians 4:6-7
We had rushed around that morning trying to remember everything needed for the day. The list was long as I spouted out everything. I was already tired as I climbed in the car. Being the mom of a teenager and a preteen is not for the faint of heart. Especially in the times that we are living in now. As I dropped off my youngest daughter, I could tell something was bothering my teenager. I simply asked what was wrong and before I knew it we were in an argument right there in the school parking lot. Tears began to flow from my eyes and hers. We went back and forth gaining no ground. “You just don’t get it Mom!” my daughter said. "What don't I get?" I begged her to tell me. I asked my daughter what she worried about most being a teenager and at first, her answer was, "I don't know." As I pushed a little harder and she began talking more. "Fitting in, being left out..." the list went on. My heart broke as she opened up, even if it was just a few things. Our mother-daughter talks had become few and far between, but what had started as an argument turned into a conversation.
At times, it feels like our teenagers speak a completely different language than us. They are growing up in a world that is tech savvy with the latest and greatest gadgets growing every year. They carry around devices with more information than they will ever be able to read. Social media fills their minds, and they worry about the number of likes and their comment count on their latest posts. As they scroll they find out about a birthday party they weren’t invited to and wonder why and what’s wrong with me? They communicate through text, DM’s, Instagram and other outlets; all the while never really learning how to communicate with each other, except behind a screen. On their social media, they use filters and apps to alter their realities. Hear me, my friends…I am not saying that technology is bad. I use technology every day and I have social media myself. I love the encouragement it can provide from others and enjoy posting pictures as well. There are some great things about technology. However, with almost everything, there is another side to it that can be detrimental if the content is not monitored, censored and the time they spend on it not kept in check. We must pour into our teens the Word of God and show them the love of Christ.
She was worried, almost anxious even about fitting in,, being left out...If I am honest, these are things that if I don't stop and catch myself, I can worry about today in my forties. Jesus doesn’t look at our number of likes, He looks at us, His daughters!
She opened the car door “I love you, baby girl. Go make it a good day.” I said. She smiled back me, “I love you too mom.” As I watched her walk away I thought about how much God loves my daughters, the ones He entrusted to me to raise. They belong to Him ultimately, just like I do.
We are raising future generations for Christ. It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it. Will you join me sweet friends in seeking Him through this journey of motherhood with which He has so richly blessed us?
Scripture Meditation: Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
What does communicating with your teen look like? Can you think of a new way to keep the line of communication open?
Have a conversation with your teen about technology. Stress to them that seeking God’s approval is more important than seeking the number of likes they receive on a post.
Starting tonight I will spend several minutes with each one of my daughters separately, asking them if they have something they would like for me to specifically pray about. If the answer is no, I will continue asking. Will you join me in asking your teen about their prayer request daily?
Father God, we thank You so much for all that You have given us. The advances in technology help us to spread the gospel and encourage fellow believers. Help us to always seek You first above all us. May we always ask for Your advice before others and strive to communicate Your love to those around us, especially our children with whom You have blessed us. Forgive us when we doubt. In Jesus name, Amen.