Teens are bombarded with an astounding array of ideas and lifestyles in today’s culture. Lessons learned in Sunday School are severely tested by what they see in school, on TV, and the internet. They need strength of character to hold on to their growing faith. They want to verify what they learned as children.
There is no better way to help teens survive, no THRIVE, than to introduce them to the complex characters of the Bible. God is on every page, and his truth is timeless. But it’s the characters that draw us into the story. Seeing them make choices, both good and bad, helps us understand a God who loves and forgives.
Peter was impulsive, exuberant and a bit moody. Ruth was faithful to her family, a hard-working outsider. Paul left his religious upbringing to become an itinerant pastor, aka troublemaker. Hannah endured bullying, but received the answer to her prayer. Joshua, Moses’ right hand man, had to wait many years for his time as leader. Lydia was a generous hostess, business-woman, and world-changer.
I write these studies to bring my favorite Bible characters into the light of the 21st century. I want both leaders and students to get involved in the story, see themselves in what those characters did, and learn important character qualities in the process.
Don’t watch helplessly as teens you love walk away from God. Help teens see themselves reflected in the Biblical drama so they can play their parts in God’s ongoing story. You’ll be glad you did.