Once people reach a certain age, usually in the late teens, they start thinking more independently. If they let pride slip into control, they even begin to see older ways of thinking as foolish compared to our own and thus stop listening to older people.
There is a story in the Bible that tells of how a young king took the counsel of his friends instead of listening to his elders (1 Kings 12:8 and 2 Chronicles 10:8). As a result of taking the advice of his friends, his people revolted against his authority. He learned too late that choosing to listen to his peers rather than those more experienced would cost him greatly.
There is great value in the advice of people who have lived longer than we have. However, this does not mean that age makes a person right all the time. There can often be times when younger people convey wise counsel. So how do we, both Christian parents and children, keep from succumbing to pride and dismissing each other based on age?
Mistakes are a part of growing
As children grow older, they begin to understand more about the world and explore and experiment with what they discover. So, parents please do not be too dismissive of your children once they hit a certain age. Make sure you hear their ideas or their side of the story before you make a judgment. The mere act of listening patiently can do a lot to avoid unnecessary strife between you and your older child.
This can be difficult to do when your child is about to make a mistake. But keeping your child from making mistakes isn’t necessarily a good thing. That is how humans grow and learn. We learn from experience. Listen to them, give your advice, but do not let a disagreement cause an unnecessary rift between you.
Parents, your teaching is not in vain. Whether or not your child embraces it now, it will most likely prove true to them in the future.
Be humble and listen to each other
Christian teenagers, just because you are close to becoming an adult does not mean you need to stop listening to your parents’ advice. You can avoid great harm and regret by heeding the warnings of your parents. They can relate to your life more than you might think.
In conclusion, listen to one another. Discuss your differences in a peaceful, loving way. Come to a compromise or arrangement if necessary. But most importantly, keep God at the center of it all. It will take great humility and love.