Another quote for the day about teenagers ...
"Our culture's reduction of adolescence to issues surrounding sexual maturation and social life has done a terrible disservice to our young peole. And insofar as young people, their parents, educators, and churches have brought into this reduced definition, we have made the task of growing into maturity much more difficult than it needs to be. A friend of ours (a recent college graduate) taught a class in 'teen issues' at a summer camp for affluent high school students last summer. At the end of the class, she asked for their evaluation. One courageous boy complained: 'This was meant to be a class in 'teen issues,' but all we talked about was sex! I am struggling with a lot of other issues -- intellectual, political, economic, religious, vocational -- that I'm going to have to make decisions about in the next few years. Aren't they teen issues? I was hoping to get some help with those!'"
From Critique, a Publication of Ransom Fellowship: Who Invented Adolescence? by Mardi Keyes
Reminds me (and I've been thinking about this all morning) of some of what Wallis says about moving faith from that which is privatize (at times focusing on the area of sexual purity) to public (that which lights into other areas besides just our own self-occupation). Private faith is good, yet it's not all there is to faith; it should naturally move outward into other concerns of life. Still pondering on this idea and application.....
Anyway, I love the above quote. My daughter hates our church's youth group because it seems like all they talk about is purity issues. I remember my brain too, when young, not finding much stimulus, or encouragement, in church. Then, I went off to college where I was a bit unprepared, naive, weak to the challenge. Everything, both secular and religious, seemed to be mostly concerned with what I did with my body (or what others did to it). The secular sexualization became mirrored in religious admonishment. I remember feeling lots of shame about something that was good, in due time, something that I hadn't even experienced yet. And, when I did, I was almost suicidal with guilt. Admonishment, correction, guidance is important in these ares, yes, but faith shouldn't be reduced to simply how-to avoid sexual shame. One focuses, then, on the sin. And, as Paul says, then we do it.
Well, just thinking this morning about some of these things.
Have a super day!