Wednesday, January 02, 2013

20 Ways to Grow Spiritually with Your Teen in 2013

As I was thinking and praying about this upcoming year, I began thinking of ways that my family can grow spiritually together in the year 2013 and then I thought about ways that families at Stillmeadow can grow together too. It's important for me to say "together" because I really believe that my role as a father is not just to teach my children, but also allow them to teach me.  By learning from them I affirm that they have something to contribute and encourage them to do so!

So here is a starter list of ways that teens and parents and children can grow in Christ together in 2013.  

Pray Together

  1. Pray for your school district officials and teachers. Find a list of people who serve in your district, put it on the fridge and pray.
  2. Take time each day to look at the news headlines and choose one or more situations to pray for.
  3. Go for prayer walks in your neighborhood.  What's a prayer walk? It's when you walk and pray for the people or places that you pass or that God comes to mind.
  4. Pray over the prayer requests listed in the Stillmeadow weekly bulletin.
  5. Ask your parent or teen how you can pray for them. Then do it. Right there. Right then. And through the week.
Serve Together
  1. Find a way to serve your parent or teen in a way you normally don't.
  2. Choose a ministry to serve in together.
  3. Bake cookies and give them out to neighbors.
  4. Visit a shut in from your church together.
  5. Serve at the York Rescue Mission with the Stillmeadow youth ministry. We go the first Friday of every month (including THIS Friday!)
Engage Scripture Together
  1. Tell your teen or parent what God is teaching you through the Bible and ask what God is teaching them.
  2. Memorize a scripture per week.  Want good verses to memorize? Just check the back of your bible or google "Scripture Memory Verses" and you'll find a ton of places to start!
  3. Read a passage at whatever meal you regularly eat together. You can find great memory plans on Bible Gateway or on the YouVersion Bible App
Practice Gratitude together
  1. Take a moment each day to thank your parent or teen for something they did.
  2. Write thank you notes to the teachers and volunteers and supervisors in your life. List specific ways they have blessed you.
  3. Write thank you notes to fire fighters and other civil servants.
  4. At each meal or before school or bed have every one share one thing or person they are thankful for.
Do Justice Together
  1. Adopt a compassion child as a family.  You can go through Nazarene Compassionate Ministries or Compassion International.
  2. Buy double the ingredients for one meal a week and leave the doubles in the Stillnaz Food Pantry or at the drop bin in the front of your grocery store.
  3. Strategize and practice random acts of kindness together.
This is just a starter list.  There are many other ways to grow together.  If you think of some, I'd love to hear them!

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