For this post, I am going to pull from an experience shared with the team at Shepherds Hill Academy (SHA) to illustrate the important role that prayer plays in the life of your teen.
One enrolled student had been spending virtually every waking hour of his life playing video games. It is not uncommon for kids with this type of addiction to quit going to school, stop eating normally, quit bathing, and neglect other important issues related to hygiene and life in general. Through its wilderness program, Shepherds Hill Academy presents teens with an unique environment with no electricity or running water. This helps teens with various addictions separate themselves from the temptations of today’s culture.
While enrolled, this particular student was adamant about leaving SHA the very day he turned 18–and just as determined NOT to have anything to do with this “Jesus” thing. Essentially, he was a card carrying member of the “Anti-God” club since he was one of at least three boys who had made a pact not to succumb to the “Jesus myth.” A Christ-centered Christian teen program like SHA wasn’t going to brainwash him into belief.
As time went on and this teen seemed set in his ways, the SHA team committed in faith to remain steadfast in prayer an perseverance. At SHA we never force Jesus on anyone, because Jesus Himself never did.
As this boy’s graduation date drew near, the look of conviction on this kid’s face became more and more evident. In fact, he no longer carried the look of a rebellious teen; you know the hurt, bitter, angry, sad look I’m talking about.
The exciting thing is that when he graduated, despite his best efforts to avoid Christ, he humbly accepted Jesus as his Savior! This kid’s soul was probably saved a month before his head was aware of it.
Jesus said, “If I am lifted up, I will draw all men unto Me.” There was no special strategy. We don’t win anyone to Christ; it is Christ in us who does the winning! That’s why we can’t put a time frame on it, or artificially induce it. Sometimes, the Gospel message gets in people’s heads; then, it can take a lifetime to get to their heart. For other people, the Gospel goes straight to their heart; then, it takes time to get to their head. Souls get saved; the head, heart, and body will follow.
Have you taken the time to pray for your children today?