3 Things Every Teen Should Know

28 Jul

I’m sharing with you a letter I wrote to a teen who is close to me, I’m almost her second mom. She just recently celebrated her 13th birthday, and as such, her mom, my best friend, Milona, encouraged me to write her a note. Her love language is words of affirmation and it would greatly make her happy and feel loved if I write her a few words. I got carried away because I have so many things to share to this budding young lady. Things I would like to share to my own daughter as well when she comes of age.  Here are the 3 things I think every teen should know.

megan

To my dearest Meg,

How time flies! When I first saw you, your Mom brought you to my house for a visit when you were just 4 years old. I just blinked and now you are already 13 going 30! As i reflect on the years of enjoying your presence in my life, I see a picture of a beautiful, godly young lady. I stand back and observed the beautiful gift your life has become.

With your full life still ahead of you, I’d like to share with you three of the most important things I’d like you to know. My desire is to encourage you and assist your Mom in giving this gentle instruction on how to be a strong, complete, godly young woman.

FIRST, I want you to know that life is not a matter of circumstances, but of choices.

The first and most important goal for me and your parents is to make sure you understand the blessed gift God has provided for you through the finished work of Jesus Christ. Everyday, I pray that you will always choose to be on Jesus’ side, even if it’s difficult and unpopular. I pray that you choose Heaven every single time. When you make this choice, God in his divine power “causes all things to work together for the good of those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28)

Even if there are circumstances that can make you feel helpless, I pray that you will always choose happiness. This is the kind of attitude that can bring you joy and contentment. Don’t allow yourself to be pulled into despair, loneliness, and hopelessness over something which may be insignificant. Remember to be thankful. An ungrateful selfish heart always leaves us feeling miserable. No matter what we have, it is never enough. “In everything, give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Jesus Christ.” (1 Thessalonians 5:18) Always be positive. Look at life as a glass half full. Always bring a smile and a good sense of humor. This changes the circumstances in your life. This leads to your happiness and joy.

With God’s power in your life, I pray that you choose health. Exercise, eat the right food, sleep and rest well, drink plenty of water and juices, and find time to enjoy the goodness of The Lord. “Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” (Hebrews 12:1) You need to be healthy to be able to do all the things that you plan to do and the things that God has planned for you. Take good care of your body, it is the temple of the Holy Spirit.

I want you to know that your choices determine your destination. I pray that you choose heaven, choose happiness, and choose health. If you have all three, then you have everything. 

SECOND, I want you to know that you need to be the best representation of our Creator in appearance and demeanor. 

“Pretty” or “beautiful” is defined subjectively. There are many different physical attributes that have been valued more today, and this opens doors for unhealthy behavior for most young women. The one gift I can give you is the gift of knowledge. I would like to share with you that the perfection that you see in the cover of magazines, tv, and movies of beautiful bodies and faces are a mirage, they don’t really exist. This is the role of computer enhancements, air brushing, and several hours of working into these faces and bodies to make them look perfect. Any flaws are erased and doctored with artificial corrections. This is unrealistic. This is NOT the definition of beauty I’d like you for you to believe.

I want you to know that you are complete, beautiful, and a wondrous creation of God. The true meaning and purpose of beauty is reflected here: “Your adornment must not be merely external – braiding the hair, and wearing of gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be that hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. For in this way in former times, the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves.” (1Peter 3:3-5)

Sounds pretty serious, isn’t it? There is nothing wrong with our outward adornment, just as long as our heart is not neglected. The way we dress and act announces to people around us who we really are. We must not allow God’s standard of beauty and modesty be dictated by the whims and trends of fashion or popular culture. We must be sensible and self controlled, content, and pleased with our appearance. True beauty, my dear Meg, is something that originates within and shines outwardly. What God has given you is designed to bring glory to Him.

I pray that the truth of God’s love and acceptance will be firmly planted in your heart and mind so you can continue to develop your God-given beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. I am confident that you will always let your outward appearance reflect the mercy and grace of God in all true loveliness.

LASTLY, I want you to know that God had created you to walk in a responsible, pure manner. Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. 

The choice to follow God in the area of moral purity affects not just yourself but the people around you. Even though you are still relatively young, I would like you to choose not to date and save your young years from heartbreak. Protect your young heart from being fragmented by casual dating. Know that you need to be mature to handle your feelings before you get emotionally involved. Date when you are ready for marriage. It is okay to have group dates and group activities, it is more fun! This way, you can get to know attributes and characters you would like to have in a husband without having to go through so many unnecessary heartaches.

When you are ready for marriage, say, by the age of 25, after you have already accomplished what you have set for yourself, then by all means, prepare yourself to date.  But the parameters for dating must be set by you as a woman. The decision for moral purity must be made before any date is planned. The ground rules need to be established before the agreement to go out. You have more responsibility because you have the awesome gift of reproduction. This overwhelming responsibility gives you the obligation to protect your body and your sense of purity is even more important.

I pray that you will always maintain purity in heart and body as your ultimate goal for your dating experience. I am reassured of this fact because you have already taken the first step to this wonderful choice when you attended the Purity Ball with your Dad and Mom. I couldn’t be more proud of you, Meg!

I would like you to know and understand that you can call me anytime you need me and tell me anything that is in your heart. Just like your Mom and Dad, I love you no matter what. I have seen you practically grow up before my eyes.

There is a wonderful life ahead God has planned for you, plans to prosper you, to give you hope and a future. This is the beginning of the rest of your great life. Happy birthday Meg!!! You are officially declared to be a TEEN.

Love and Hugs,

Your Tita Leny

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