Parents are the most important influences their kids will ever have. That’s especially true when it comes to matters of faith. So how can you help your teenagers dig into God’s Word and apply it to their lives?
Andy Blanks, author and founder of YM360, offers these insights:
Emphasize the relationship, not the action. Although reading the Bible is an important discipline and habit, the key is growing closer to Jesus. Help teenagers realize that reading God’s Word is relational. They’re not simply downloading information to their hard drives for later use. First and foremost, Blanks says, reading the Bible is “a heart-driven, deeply personal, experiential encounter with God.”
Because this generation of young people is so creative, we must encourage them to creatively engage with Scripture. For most people, reading the Bible brings to mind the standard “read through a chapter and ponder it” study method. Help teenagers vary their routine by praying through the Psalms, meditating on a specific attribute of Jesus each week, or summarizing a new insight by drawing, painting, writing, or sculpting.
As always, modeling is the best way to influence teenagers. Kids always pick up more on what parents do rather than what we say. Are you interacting with Scripture regularly? Do your kids see you doing that? Consider how you can start sharing what you read and learn.
Reading God’s Word is transformative, regardless of age or life stage. So, use these suggestions to engage with the Bible in meaningful ways—and to encourage your teenagers to do so too.
Each month we are challenging the students to S.O.A.P through a book of the Bible that we are providing.
S.O.A.P means: S = scripture, O = observation, A = application, P = prayer.
This month we are going through the book of John together, across all campuses, as a student ministry.
One of the best ways to encourage engagement is the 5&5 principle. 5 min in the word and 5 min in prayer.
BIBLE READING TOOLS:
These apps—all free except for one—can help teenagers engage with Scripture:
Blue Letter Bible—30 Bible translations, audio Bibles, and commentaries help young people dig deep into God’s Word.
Daughters of the Creator—This app offers a daily Bible verse and devotionals specifically for women and girls ($1.99 per month).
Man Up God’s Way—Guys can experience Scripture and accountability in this app-centric environment.
Proverb-A-Day—Every day, this app sends a verse from the book of Proverbs to your phone.
Scripture Typer—This app helps you memorize, organize, and review Scripture based on your personalized calendar and creativity.