Teens face unique challenges, so using the same spiritual direction approaches as adults will not work with them. Helping young people – teens, tweens, and college students alike – can help solidify their faith as they enter adulthood.
Why Teens Need Spiritual Direction
Lifeway Research did a study on when young people fall away from the faith, and the statistics were quick – and obvious. The study was on Protestant teens who attended church regularly for at least a year. Here are the results:
- At age 17, 69% were still attending
- At age 18, it fell to 58%
- At age 19, it was down to 40%
- At age 20, only 33% were still attending
That is dramatic! Within 3 years, two-thirds (67%) of teens who once attended church regularly will not continue to attend in their 20s.
Among Catholics, the Pew Research Center found similar statistics. Almost 50% of Catholics who left the Church left before they turned 18, and 80% left before they turned 24.
Many parents and church leaders hold onto hope that they may come back once they become adults and have kids of their own, but that is often not the case. The number of active Christians who attend weekly services continues to shrink, and there is one reason: they lack a true relationship with God.
You invest in their education.
You invest in their extracurricular activities.
Why not invest in the one thing that truly matters most: their faith!
As tweens become teens who become college students, there are different challenges along the way. Guiding these young people during these formative years can help them establish a faith that lasts.
Middle School / Tweens
Tweens are just beginning to leave their childhood behind, when they once hung on every word of their parents. They believed in God because you believed in God, but as tweens, they have to start building that relationship with God for themselves. At the same time, they will face new challenges:
- Social pressures are beginning to increase
- They begin to understand, for themselves, right from wrong
- Their bodies and thought processes are changing
- The can think more analytically about complex topics
- They begin to question who God is in their lives
High School / Teens
As teens, the temptations and lures of the world start becoming a major factor in their lives. They are old enough to start making their own choices, while parents simply guide and hope for the best. Some of those choices will have lifelong impacts as they prepare to become adults.
- Pressure to fit in or be popular dominates their social world
- The workload of school, extracurriculars, and part-time jobs increases
- Decisions about college and career become a central focus
- Dating and relationships become more complex
- Moral choices about sex, alcohol, and drugs come into play
College / Young Adults
When teens become twenty-somethings, they often take their first adventures out on their own, whether that’s going away to school, starting a new job, or getting their first apartment. At this point, parents hope and trust that their efforts to raise their kids in the faith will stick, but the decision at this point is completely up to them.
- Parents are not there 24/7 to help guide them
- Some decisions will inevitably lead to poor choices
- New voices and perspectives will come from every direction
- Decisions about career and the next steps are critical
- Even decisions about where to live next become a factor
- And will they continue to practice their faith on their own?
How Spiritual Direction Can Help
Spiritual direction is a process that can help teens and young adults explore their faith, grow in their relationship with God, and make decisions about their lives. A spiritual director is a trained listener who can help teens to:
- Discern God’s presence in their lives
- Identify their spiritual gifts and talents
- Develop a personal prayer life
- Make wise choices about their relationships, studies, and careers
- Cope with difficult challenges
Spiritual direction can be a valuable resource for young people who are seeking guidance and support on their spiritual journey.
Why Choose Directional Faith?
My goal is to meet teens on common ground – not by forcing them to act like adults, and definitely not by trying to act young myself (because I’m not). But there’s a middle ground, where we can understand each other and talk about what is going on in their lives.
There won’t be any lighting of candles, singing bowls, or other practices at Directional Faith. It’s simply a conversation between two Christians, where one is coming to the other for guidance and advice.
Clear and Straightforward
Today’s teens want someone to speak to them in a clear, direct manner. Adults often over-complicate faith and religion, when teens simply need clear, straightforward guidance.
Remote / Online
Remote spiritual direction is a convenient and affordable option for teens who live in rural areas or who have difficulty finding a spiritual director in their area. With remote spiritual direction, teens can meet with their spiritual director via video chat or phone call. This allows teens to have the same benefits of spiritual direction as they would if they were meeting in person, without having to travel.
Special Discount for Students
Students from Middle School, High School, and College receive a discount of $10 off! This is for a standard, 45-minute spiritual direction session.
Standard Price: $80/session
Student Price: Just $70/session!
If you are a teen who is interested in spiritual direction, or if you are a parent or guardian of a teen who is interested in spiritual direction, book your first session today for FREE!