God Loves You Teenager!
Teenager Stories - A Boy - A Girl

Purple Sweet Pea Flower on Black Background

To you, dear teenager,

Surprise, believe it or not, all of us older folks were teenagers once.

It can be a difficult yo-yo time of confusion, rebellion, misunderstanding, frustration, depression, anxiety, hurt, broken love, boredom, fear, huge changes, and trying to have fun, and some days are just no fun.

Life and all it's ups and downs, privileges and responsibilities, just keeps dumping on you all at once, and your moods can change really fast - many times in a day.

You can be full of life and lazy and angry and hateful and loving and crazy and rude and say the meanest things and feel totally awkward and not even really know why you were so dumb. Besides being tired and hungry and too hot and too cold and not paying attention and being careless and getting blamed all the time for stuff like late homework and a messy room and "How in the world did I forget?" really important stuff to you.

And being curious and getting into trouble and getting real mad at your teachers and parents. Life's just no fair and I can't seem to fit in and all I'm getting is the bowl of cherry pits and more zits.

"How in the world did I end up getting so mixed up and so messed up? Why am I ruining everything?"

Hold it. Slow down. Breathe deeply. You'll be okay.

We might be older, but we all were once teenagers - for at least seven years. We forget what it was like, because we usually don't want to think about it. Sure, we sometimes wonder how we survived, and why we didn't get killed for the stuff we did.

I want to tell you 2 stories, one of a teenage boy, and one of a teenage girl, who ended up making decisions as teenagers that completely changed the rest of their lives and all of history - and all of eternity.

For Teenage Boys and Girls

The teenage boy was so wild, he wanted to see great power to destroy whole towns of people. Maybe he was an out-of-control, control-freak.

To most of the world, the teenage girl appeared to be an unwed mother at fifteen.

Eventually, these two ended up living in the same home for years - but they never got married.

Yet all Christians, and all generations, owe an immense gratitude to both of them.

The teenage boy later wrote the 4th Gospel, 3 epistles, and the last book of the Bible. The teenage girl is Jesus' own mother.

God loves them so much, he chose them for a special work. And God loves you just as much, not a fraction less, and he has chosen a special work for you too.

No matter how awful and bad you think you are, never give up hope, because his love is for you is infinite and unconditional.

John - the Teenage Boy

The boy's name is John. Zebedee was his father. John - and his older brother James - had to work for their father's fishing business catching fish all night and cleaning nets by day.

Maybe they heard a lot of bad sailor language., and probably used it too. Like so many families on earth, their family may have been a bit dysfunctional in their family. John and James seem to have had tempers, easily getting angry at things. Maybe they fought and yelled and argued with each other. Jesus gave them the nick-name, Sons of Thunder. Sounds pretty bad. But Jesus can change it for good.

John and James were idealists, full of zeal. They heard about John the Baptist, and eventually joined John the Baptist as followers, to learn all about the kingdom of God that he was preaching. They wanted wealth, power and royalty, and here was their chance.

When John the Baptist showed them a teacher who had greater power - Jesus - the two of them packed their bags again, and went off to see him, to become his followers. And they brought their bad tempers right along with them.

They just went ahead and did a lot of things without asking, and got into trouble for it. Like the time another man was casting out devils, who didn't belong to their little group, and they told him to stop. When John told Jesus, Jesus had to correct them.

One time, a town of people refused to give them food. So they asked Jesus to cast fire from heaven and destroy the town. Jesus just said to them, "You don't know what spirit you are." Jesus knew better than to get into an argument when someone is in a mood.

Another time they made a dumb mistake.

They wanted power in the kingdom Jesus was teaching about. They were probably afraid that the other followers of Jesus, who were all older men than them, would get the first and best positions. So they got their mother to come and ask for the two top positions.

The other 10 men were pretty angry because they were being cheated by the 2 sneaks, the two big knuckle-headed teenagers. They probably felt like killing the two of them right then and there.

They were all acting like spoiled children. It was a miracle that Jesus didn't give up on them, walk away, and start over somewhere else.

Jesus gave them a lesson on suffering, and that to be great, we must first serve, as Jesus who came to serve and give up His life.

We also find in the bible account that Jesus did something amazing. Jesus took 3 very dysfunctional people out of His little group of 12, and made them his closest friends - Peter - a rustic fisherman, and James and John - Sons of Thunder.

And the youngest of them, the teenager John, Jesus took personally under his wing and poured out his unconditional love and affection, letting him sit right next to him at mealtime to make sure he had a little extra food from his own plate, because it seems teenagers are always hungry - at least teenage boys.

Maybe you feel hungry all the time?

Every teenager needs someone who loves them. And for John, that was Jesus. Jesus let John in on a lot of His special secrets.

If Jesus hadn't given extra special attention to Peter, James and John, and become their close friend, the 3 of them could have become criminals. So John lived with Jesus about 3 years, and learned a lot, and grew up a lot - because like all of us, he had a lot of growing up to do.

On the last night of Jesus' life, John as usual was close next to Jesus during dinner. He even rested his head on Jesus' chest, because they had become very close. Jesus shared more secrets with John about what was going to happen.

Afterward, Jesus took the whole group outside the city to a special place to pray, and invited his three closest friends to be closer to him. He wanted them to pray, but they kept falling asleep.

Then Jesus was arrested, and thrown into prison. The next day, Jesus was tried and tortured and other horrible things. And when Jesus was crucified, nailed to a cross and left to die, John was there to see it all. The other "grown-up" men had all run away.

John was losing his closest friend, the only friend who really understood him and his problems, and having to lose him in such a terrible, awful, tragic way. John could have gotten very angry. But Jesus had been showing him a much better way to handle his problems.

What was he going to do when Jesus died?

Jesus could barely speak for all his pain, but he didn't forget that John still needed someone who could understand him as a deepest and truest friend, no matter what John did.

Jesus told his mother to take John as a son. Then he told John to take his mother for his own mother.

From that time on, John had the responsibility to take care of Mary like Jesus had done until he died, and like Joseph before him had done until he died.

What gave John, the youngest of the group of 12 men, the courage to stand by the cross of Jesus? I think it was because he had 2 mothers on Calvary, one, his own physical mother (the mother of the sons of Zebedee, the bible says) and the one Jesus gave to be his soul-mate, his spiritual mother and friend. It was a lot of responsibility for a teenager who had just been hit in the face with the harsh realities of how cruel men can be - and how cruel he could've turned out to be - without the love of God and His friendship.

And yet, what a privilege for a teenager! How lucky John was to have Jesus and Mary for his closest and dearest friends!

John took care of Mary in his home for about 15 or 20 years, and became a fine young gentleman noted for - well, his gentleness, of all things !!!

Later, John wrote the 4th Gospel, filling in many stories about Jesus that Matthew, Mark, and Luke didn't know. As he writes, he calls himself the "disciple whom Jesus loved." He also wrote 3 epistles, and the last book of the bible, when God gave him special revelations to the churches.

Of all the 12 apostles, he lived the longest. As an old man, when he could barely talk, he would preach in the assemblies of Christians and say over and over, "Little children, love one another." When he was asked to say something different, he would just say it is the most important thing. He had learned his lesson well from his 2 closest friends. He had found the greatest power to change the world.

John could have become a hateful and cruel man. Instead, 2000 years later we still call him "the Apostle of Love."

Mary - the Teenage Girl

About 30 years before Jesus dying on the cross gave Mary and John to care for each other, a sweet Jewish girl who had given her life to God, was praying in her room in a town of Nazareth. Her name is Mary.

She was engaged but not married to Joseph, a young carpenter, because the priests in the temple told her this was God's will, but, she had promised God to be a virgin forever. An angel came with a message from God, asking her to be God's mother.

Mary knew her scriptures well, she had lived and studied in the temple in Jerusalem for about 11 years since the age of three. Her mother and father were Joachim and Anne, who had no children for years, which was considered a curse among the Jews. So they had promised God to give their child to His service. God heard their prayer, and in their old age had Mary.

It was a harsh time in the country, because the country was occupied by the cruel Romans who treated them like slaves and dogs. Their own government under Herod also had a bunch of soldiers and spies who tortured and executed people right and left.

So Mary knew her scriptures, that the Son of God would be a man of sorrows, and would eventually be betrayed, handed over by the Jewish rulers, and tortured and executed under the Roman rulers.

But now, only about 15 years old, she said yes to God's plan. She knew that her life was in danger, and her life would never be the same, because she would have to endure the unthinkable humiliation of being an unwed mother.

Because if you were caught having a baby without being married, you would be stoned to death.

To his credit, after a dream explaining the situation, Joseph, who had at least wanted to hide Mary to keep her from getting stoned, took Mary as his wife in legal marriage.

Joseph also knew that he would have to suffer the humiliation for the rest of his life of everyone thinking that he was the real father, and that the baby came outside of marriage.

But God knows the truth, and that's what counts.

God wanted Joseph to protect and support Mary and her child, by taking her as his wife. Joseph saved Mary from death by stoning, and months later, saved the child from death at the command of Herod.

So Mary took the greatest privilege and the greatest responsibility any women on earth - when she was only a 14 or 15 year old teenager. She carried Emmanuel - God with us - physically inside her for 9 months. But she would also carry the great weight of the world, suffering as only mothers can, when Jesus suffered. She was later to stand at the foot of the cross when Jesus was crucified and died 34 years later.

Now back to our teenager Mary. After saying yes to God through His angel, Mary then went on a journey in haste, walking 80 miles which took at least several days, to help her much older cousin Elizabeth, who was also having a miraculous baby in her old age. It was also providential, because that way Mary would learn all the things involved with pregnancy, child birth, and how to take good care of a baby, from her older wiser cousin.

You can read more about the story of Mary, the angel, Elizabeth - and Mary giving birth - in the 1st and 2nd chapter of Luke in the Holy Bible, New Testament, 3rd Gospel. There are also some beautiful prayers that you can pray every day if you want, especially the prayer of Mary when she was filled with the Holy Spirit praising God when she arrived at Elizabeth's house a few days after her conception of Jesus.

Which is a very good prayer for mothers to pray every day, especially when they are pregnant with a child, because it's the prayer Mary prayed when she was pregnant, because "He who is mighty has done great things for me," and every baby is a miracle from God, and pregnant mothers need every blessing they can get.

Yes, God Loves You, Dear Teenager!

I wish you many blessings. God has a specialized individual plan for you in this life, and He wants to walk beside you and be inside you to strengthen and encourage you, and to prosper you, and make you truly fruitful and successful.

And not just in this life. He wants you to live life to the fullest having the most fun in the best and happiest ways we can't begin to imagine - forever, for all eternity - in His home in heaven.

God is crazy over you. He loved you to death, and still loves you to death, in the craziest way. He's crazy over you, and I just thought someone ought to let you know.

Thank your stars, tell Him right now a big thank you, because He's your very best friend and will never let you down. Even if you disappoint Him a lot, and let Him down all the time. We all do, it's just we adults do a better job at hiding it, or at least we think we do.

He appreciates your honesty. Tell him what you're going through. He understands your pain. He knows you better than you think. Probably even better than you know yourself. But don't let that scare you.

(He was once a teenager too.)

(Remember, it helps to breathe deeply once in awhile. That's what I've been told.)


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