A Must Do Exercise For You And Your Teens

Courtesy of Orin Zebest/Creative Commons License

Take about 30 seconds to write down as many of the spiritual habits you want to see your teens develop.  After you compose that list look at what is on it?  Did you have:
Memorizing Scripture
Quiet Time Prayer
Chances are you could have written more because you can never have too many.  Each year we try to pass these habits onto our teens.  We preach about them in our messages and hand out giveaways to remind them.  We discuss and debate them in small groups; however, if you really want these habits to stick and to become a part of their lives you need to have them:


I’m not talking about taking notes, instead writing out a document that creates a picture of what type of Christian man or woman they want to be.  Essentially you want them to write a vision statement followed by a list of values.  Have them start with:

THE VISION STATEMENT – Make sure that their vision statement is:

  • Clear – It should be something so that when another person hears it they know what it is saying.
  • Memorable – A vision statement forgotten is pointless so make sure it’s something they can easily memorize.
  • Emotional – It just can’t be, “I want to be great.” the vision should be personal.  Something that you are proud and passionate about achieving.

After they tackle the vision have them flesh it out with:

THE VALUES – The values put meat on the vision; therefore:

  • Use “I AM” Statements – An “I AM” statement will give you the confidence to not only say it but believe it.
  • Match It To God – Back it up with scripture so that when you struggle with the value you can go back to God’s word.
  • Review Them Together – Share your values with others so that you can receive the accountability you need to live them out.
  • Make It A Work In Progress – Never be done with your values (or your vision), revisit it, and tweak it so that it matches your season of life.

If you want your teen to develop the habits of a disciple you need to help them cast a vision.  In order to flesh that vision out, you need to help them develop specific values.  With vision and values the disciplines you share with them have purpose.  They begin to see why reading scripture and tithing are so important.  They will begin to know why quiet time is essential in helping them be the type of Christian man or woman God wants them to be.   If you want a sample of a vision and values statement, I’ve included the current draft of mine below.

How do you help teens develop a vision statement?  How often do you work on your own?