How you express and live out your faith, in front of your family, may have a greater impact on your son or daughter than anything else you do. – Kara Powell
It is really hard to walk your loved ones thru trauma when you are dealing with it yourself. None us know how to feel right now or how to make the best out of our current situation. But I want to remind you that passing on your faith to your children is a process that never stops.
In fact, it is in moments of great distress and anxiety that your faith should stand-out the most! Have you taken time this week (it doesn’t matter if you did last week) and ask your teenager questions to help them process? Questions like:
- How are you feeling about this virus?
- What is the hardest part of this quarantine for you? Why?
- What have you learned since this all started?
- What role do you think our faith plays in this time?
- What can I (we) do to help you with all you are going through and feeling?
I asked my BRILLIANT therapist friend Patricia Stepler for a few tips, and this is what she said:
You have a wonderful opportunity to sit and be present with your kids in their pain. This is an invaluable gift you can give them. It may feel awkward for both of you. But keep at it, don’t give up, know you will both make mistakes when having hard conversations. Show each other grace, and keep the lines of communication open!
She goes on:
1.Be a truth teller — not a task master.
Create a safe space to speak truthfully about ALL feelings. Allow discussions about frustrations, stress, overwhelm, fear, sadness, boredom, worry, as well as gratitude and happiness.
2. Be a guide — not a half listener.
Talk less; listen more. Teens want to talk. They don’t want to be lectured or told how they “should” feel.
3. Be a guide — not a half listener.
Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Some of the topics might feel like foreign territory. Some of the language used might make you feel uncomfortable. Remember, your teens are trying to process what’s going on. They may not have all the appropriate words to express themselves. They may communicate via unpleasant actions instead of words.
Remember, our youth team is praying for you today! Please feel free to reach out if we can help in any way!
Pastor to Students