6 Ways to Engage Your Teen in Healthy Spiritual Rhythms 

6 ways
Rob Hoskins, OneHope President

With the school bells dismissing kids for summer, the break in normal routine begs the question — how can we, as parents, grandparents, guardians and mentors, use this time strategically to encourage the next generation to engage in healthy spiritual habits in every season? 

In OneHope’s Global Youth Culture study, when focusing on data from North America, more than half of surveyed teens said they were Christians, but only 8% displayed traits of engaging in healthy spiritual formation habits, like regularly reading the Bible. 

The formative teenage years usher in challenging questions as young people wrestle with direction for their lives, what they think about God and the Church, and where they ‘fit in’ with their current reality. They see the expansive choices ahead of them as exciting yet weighty.  As believers, we can walk alongside teens as they navigate these pivotal years. 

6 waysHere are some ideas for strategically planting spiritually healthy seeds into the next generation:

  • Engage them in Scripture – it is not our words, but God’s that can challenge young hearts and spark new life and fervor that will set them on a path leading them to affect the destiny of others.
  • Take them with you – serve together in your community and take them on mission trips allowing them to see firsthand the impact God’s word can have on lives.
  • Invite them into the story – cast the vision for the role they are to play in God’s Big Story, reminding them that God has given each one of us a gift to use for the furtherance of His kingdom.
  • Set up programs that allow them to give, whether it’s time stuffing bags of food, talent decorating backpacks with beautiful renditions of God’s love, earning money to support a missional cause or praying regularly for people groups across the globe.
  • Allow them opportunities to use their gifts – my father had the ministry that he did because a pastor shared a pulpit with him at the tender age of seven. Know that our Father has plans that are grander than the scope of our imaginations.
  • Share God stories to inspire them our heritage is rich in stories of God’s Word reaching the unreached and changing lives no matter the impossible circumstances, whether in big cities, far-off jungles, and in the best or worst of times. Everyone has a story, and every story is important to God and for us to hear to bolster our own faith.

Although teenagers may seem to have boundless energy, Scripture shows that even the youngest among us have their limits, making it vital for us to turn to God.

“He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might, He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint” (Isaiah 40:30-31). 

The next generation has great potential! Let’s intentionally instill healthy spiritual practices in the next generation and invite them to affect destiny in their neighborhood, broader community, city and world. 

Read more by Rob Hoskins at goodnewsfl.org/author/rob-hoskins/

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