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  • Writer's pictureW. Austin Gardner

Raising Teenagers on the Mission Field

by Betty Gardner

Be sure that your children develop their own spiritual life.

Have family devotions

  • Make sure the child knows how to pray.

  • Be open to their questions, comments, and doubts.

  • Take time to ask your child if they have really put their faith in Christ. Help them to see what being saved is all about.

  • Ask them questions so you can really get inside their hearts and thoughts.

  • Share with them your needs and how God works in your life.

  • Let them know how much you love God and why. Let them share your excitement and love for God

Child’s Personal Devotions

Help them to live a sufficiently disciplined life so that they can find and orderly time to be alone with God each day.

Help them to have a disciplined time of Bible reading and praying each day.

Ask them what God has shown them in the Scriptures in their time alone with God.

Make sure that they have a personal intimate walk with God. Do they know how to get things from God. Do they know how to have God talk to them through His word.

Disciple your children. They are the most important disciples that you will ever have. They will do more for God than you ever did. We must invest quality time in them.


It is easy to be a “professional Christian!”

Have them be in the service. Listen. Get involved

Good idea to have a notebook and take down notes from the service.

Ask them how the message applied to them personally.

Explain to them how God deals with our hearts so they know how to hear His voice.

Tell them how God dealt with your heart.

Let them see God working in other peoples lives. b. Let them learn what it feels to be used of God to help others.

Be sure that they really go to church.

Question them about what God said to them during the service.

Be sure that they get involved in church activities.

Watch their friends. It is easy for the wrong crowd to get involved even in a good local church.

Treasure your children.

Tell them how valuable they are to you.

Make an unconditional commitment to them for life.

Schedule special times with the family.

Let your children know that you are available for them.

Getting rid of anger and bitterness.

Many times the MK will feel hurt. They have been drug from their home and all they know to a new world. They left their friends. Dad doesn’t have the time to spend with them that they would like. We need to help them get rid of the anger and bitterness that fills their heart. The anger and bitterness that they feel separates us. It ties them up in knots. It makes it difficult to even relate to God.

Here are five steps that should help get rid of the anger and bitterness that they feel.

Become soft and tender with the person.

Understand, as much as possible, what the other person has endured.

Admit that the person has been wounded, and be sure to admit any wrong in provoking that hurt.

Seek forgiveness and trust God for their response.

Touch the person gently.

Be careful with your attitude.

The parents attitude makes the biggest difference in how the kids will love the work, the country, the people and even God.

Let them know that you are but a sinner and you to need God. You make mistakes and you aren’t all that you should be.

Let them feel that you have a positive attitude about them, their life, and their future.

Don’t be a professional Christian or worker. Let your kid know that you are still in awe about all that God is doing. If they see you playing a game then they will too.

We are in this together. It is not just one parent’s responsibility. Parents should stand together, and not side with the child against their partner. Nor should one parent hide things that the child is saying from the other parent. We are a family and we work together. Parents need to have a good relationship and discuss everything. Your children should know that you are 100% in agreement. This gives the child a real sense of security knowing that their parents are in love, in agreement and working together.

Miscellaneous do’s and don’ts

Keep your children busy.

Explain responsibility. Let them grow up. Explain the consequences. Be sure and maintain a balance.

Pray, pray, pray. It is the grace and goodness of God that does more to raise them than anything we do.

Make sure your child knows that they are more important to you than those that you work with.

Allow them to spend time with their friends. It would be good to have them at your house so that you can watch how they are developing. You need to really learn the language so that you can know what they are saying

Listen. Really listen to your child.

Be careful to explain well and properly the dating thing. Have your children make a covenant with you. You are not trying to hurt your child. You want the best for them in their relationship with the other sex. You will help pray for and look for and wait for that special person that God has prepared for them. They should send any person wanting a date to their father for his approval. We can wait on God. He will do what is best.

Be careful to really live what you preach.

Ask forgiveness. Let them know that you do wrong and you have to say your sorry and get things right with God.

Let them see the hand of God in your personal life. Let them see God answer your prayers, show you where you are wrong, and do the work in the ministry too.

Help them have a destiny. Let them realize that if God called you then God knew that they were part of the family and that God has a special job for them to do. They are special. They aren’t normal. God is preparing them even now for something supernatural.

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