The days are long (some are longer than others!), and the years are short! I am finding myself in the trenches of raising a teenager and another one coming in HOT!!! I know I am not the only one who is where I am right now, and I know that many of you have been where I am and survived! I thought the hardest days were raising infants and toddlers…I was wrong! I have apologized to my parents for the torment I may have caused them (although I am pretty sure I was an angel 😉… most of the time). While I feel that parenting is hard…being a teenager is hard too! I am not saying one is harder than the other, just acknowledging that they are both equally difficult phases to journey through.
Just like giving birth, the memory of the pain can fade just as the memory of what it is like to be a teenager can fade. You may remember vividly certain aspects of the experience, but the intensity does fade with time. We mature and grow and hopefully change into the adults that Christ intended us to be. Sometimes we change so much or such a long time has passed that we forget that we were once teenagers! I was going through some old picture and I came across a picture (not digital) that someone took of Justin and I when we were in middle school. He was in 8th grade and I was in 7th grade! It was then that I realized I too had forgotten what it was like to be a teenager. It was scary and reassuring all at the same time! Scary because I remember the temptations I faced, reassuring because I was able to visualize how much time had passed since that photo was taken, and I appreciate the person I have become. The best part is that now I can understand that God is still working on me today!
The concept of time is difficult for teens. They tend to focus on the present; the future can be hard to see. As we get older, the opposite can be true. The past is hard to see…perhaps we mature and change so much that we forget or don’t recognize the teen we once were. I keep the picture in my bathroom where I will see it every day as a reminder of who I was and what it was like to be a teenager. I pray that God will give me and all parents the wisdom, strength, patience and love required to help our own children become the adults that He intends them to be.
Have you forgotten (or blocked it from memory) what it is like to be a teenager? Let’s walk down memory lane together!!! Dig through your old pictures and bring me or Tara a picture of yourself from between the ages of 13-18. We will make a digital copy and take a current picture of you. Then we will play a matching game in the newsletter over the summer months. There will be prizes for matching correctly, most changed, the least changed and other fun categories! The more who play, the more fun we can have! So come on and walk down memory lane with me! I know our teens would love to see the pictures too, and this is a perfect opportunity to engage with each other and bond over the one thing we all have in common!
Lastly, another season of Wednesday nights at FVPC has concluded! Thank you so very much to everyone who came, provided meals, organized meals, set up and cleaned up dinners and helped keep the program running smoothly! Although we are not meeting weekly, we will continue to offer different opportunities to fellowship and worship together during the summer! Just to name a few of the activities…VBS, baseball games, ice skating, pool parties, fishing and bowling...everyone is welcome!!!