Helping the Student Who Self-Injures

Self-injury (sometimes called "cutting") is the intentional infliction of injury to self without the aid of another person for the purpose of venting anger or self-justification. The intent is typically not suicidal. The self-injurer wants to live, but is simply trying to cope with extreme self-hate or anger. Although cutting the skin is the most … Continue reading Helping the Student Who Self-Injures

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How to Discourage Your Children

"Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord." (Ephesians 6:4) In some translations of the Bible, the phrase "do not provoke your children to anger" is translated, "do not exasperate your children." This verse is an important modifier verse to the more familiar three … Continue reading How to Discourage Your Children

Gospel-Centered Family: Becoming the Parents God Wants You to Be

Ed Moll and Tim Chester say that their book Gospel-Centered Family is "not about how the gospel fits into Christian family life, but how family life should fit into the gospel - God's greatest purpose for the universe, achieved in Christ." In less than 100 pages, Moll and Chester have written a book that is … Continue reading Gospel-Centered Family: Becoming the Parents God Wants You to Be

Is Raising “Good Kids” The Point?

Elyse Fitzpatrick would answer "no" and so would I. In her latest book from Crossway, written with the help of her daughter Jessica Thompson (also a mom), Fitzpatrick argues convincingly that "Christian children (and their parents) don't need to learn to be 'nice,' they need death and resurrection and a Savior who has gone before … Continue reading Is Raising “Good Kids” The Point?

Teenagers, Sexual Brokenness & the Gospel

Students are broken over pornography, voyeurism, oral sex, sexting, “hooking-up,” sexploitation, sexual abuse, sexual pressure, sexual addiction, same-sex attraction, date rape, virtual sex, masturbation, etc. How sad it is that so many kids are broken over something that God created to be good, and beautiful and guiltless. The good news is that Christ came to … Continue reading Teenagers, Sexual Brokenness & the Gospel

Bonding with Your Teen through Boundaries, by June Hunt

As a youth pastor, counselor and pastor who has worked with adolescents and their families for over 20 years, there is no issue that I've seen baffle more parents than the issue of how to establish and maintain appropriate boundaries for their teenagers. Almost every parent is concerned with whether their boundaries are too firm … Continue reading Bonding with Your Teen through Boundaries, by June Hunt

Youth Ministry Essentials: 6 Steps to Helping Hurting Students

You probably didn’t get into youth ministry to help teens deal with abuse, addiction, parental divorce, abandonment, premarital sex, cutting, suicidal thoughts, anger issues, and other painful life situations. But it doesn’t take long to learn that crises come with the territory. As you build deep relationships with the students and families in your church … Continue reading Youth Ministry Essentials: 6 Steps to Helping Hurting Students