This weekend, my family reached an incredible milestone: my oldest spark plug became a teenager! Looking back, I'm not exactly sure how we got here. There were so many days during the toddler years that seemed to drag on forever, and yet somehow, the years simultaneously flew by. It's certainly true what they say about the days being long but the years short!
I felt like I should be able to write something profound about parenting a thirteen-year-old, but since I only have about 4 days' experience to draw from, I decided instead to let God's Word do the sharing instead.
So, here are 13 verses for a young man's 13th birthday (taken from the NKJV):
- Proverbs 9:10 - The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
- Psalm 119:9 - How can a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed according to Your word.
- 1 Timothy 4:12 - Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity.
- Psalm 71:5 - For You are my hope, O Lord GOD; You are my trust from my youth.
- Jeremiah 1:6-7 - Then said I: “Ah, Lord God! Behold, I cannot speak, for I am a youth.” But the Lord said to me: “Do not say, ‘I am a youth,’ For you shall go to all to whom I send you, And whatever I command you, you shall speak."
- 2 Timothy 2:22 - Flee also youthful lusts; but pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.
- Micah 6:8 - He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?
- 1 Corinthians 10:13 - No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.
- Deuteronomy 31:6 - Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.
- Exodus 20:12 - Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.
- Proverbs 6:20 - My son, keep your father’s command, And do not forsake the law of your mother.
- 1 John 2:1-2 - My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.
- Ephesians 4:29 - Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.
The Bible has far more to say to young men than in these few verses, but these are the ones that jumped out at me as I studied for this post. My prayer for all my children is that they would first and foremost grow up to love and serve God as their personal Savior and Lord. My hope is that they will be a living testimony of God's grace to those around them, that they would make wise decisions, and that they would honor the Lord in all they do.