Welcome to the brand-spanking new NECC Student Ministries Parent Resources Blog! This is the primary vehicle for us to facilitate parent-child discipleship. Our number one goal is to lead students into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ and you are a crucial component in achieving that goal. Our student ministries team is only able to interact with your students on a limited basis. In a perfect world, we are able to engage in a discipling relationship on Sunday mornings, Wednesday evenings, during trips and retreats, and through social media. However, we all know that life happens and that this isn’t a perfect world. Sundays or Wednesdays are missed and retreats sometimes conflict with other obligations. The reality is that any discipling that we are able to engage in with your students is limited by the few opportunities that we get to interact with them. That is where you come in.
You are able to interact with your students on a more regular basis than we are. You know your students on a much deeper level than we could ever know them. And you will be in their life much longer than we ever will. And we know exactly what you are thinking! You think you are unequipped to disciple anyone. You think that you are irrelevant in your student’s life. And you are thinking that even if you tried to speak into the life of your student, they wouldn’t listen. Well, that is where we come in.
We want more than anything to do everything that we can to facilitate healthy parent-child relationships. There is no greater time in a child’s life that they need their parents’ guidance, encouragement, and accountability than in their teenage years. According to studies, a person’s worldview is pretty much set by the time they are 13 years old. That means that by the time a person is entering high school, their worldview is defined for the rest of their life. You, as parents of middle school students, have an extraordinary opportunity to shape that worldview. The reality is that if you are not shaping their worldview, someone else is and more often than not, that worldview is not a biblical one.
But don’t think that all is lost just because your student is in high school already. It is not too late to instill biblical principles into your student’s heart and mind. Many parents come to the conclusion that once their student hits high school, they have the opportunity to take their foot off the gas when it comes to parenting. We hope that you do not take this approach. The high school years are the most important years for your students’ relationship with Christ. If you do not disciple them into a deep, healthy relationship with Christ during these years, you will not ever get that opportunity back. Once they hit college, start their career, get married, and begin having kids, your influence in their life diminishes by the day. Studies show that as many as 66% of young adults stop attending church regularly between the ages of 18 and 22. Please read this article if you are the parent of a high school student: http://collegian.tccd.edu/?p=10454
We strongly believe that the primary reason for this is that parents are not taking the time to spiritually invest in their child’s life. Most parents make it a priority to invest in their child’s physical health by getting their child involved in sports. Parents make it a priority to invest in their child’s mental health by sending them to school and encouraging their child to stay on top of their studies. And most parents invest in their child’s emotional health by encouraging healthy relationships and continuing to develop the parent-child relationship. But, our hope is that you also invest in your child’s spiritual development and make it a priority to, not only encourage a healthy relationship with God, but to be actively involved in it.
Hopefully, you will find this blog helpful for you to begin to be actively involved in discipling your child into a deeper, more mature relationship with Christ that will last throughout their adult life. This blog will help equip you to do the work of discipling your middle or high school student, be relevant in their life, and get them to actually listen to you and take biblical advice. More than anything, our hope is that this blog will assist you in opening up lines of communication and start conversations with your student about Jesus Christ. If you want your student to be a lifelong follower of Jesus, the bulk of the work of discipleship lands on the parents and we are here to help you with that task.
Please do not hesitate to send us your feedback and let us know the struggles that you are having in this area of parenthood. We would love for this to be a place for parents to connect with one another and help one another out.
With Christ’s love,
The NECC Student Ministries Team