I have the great pleasure of introducing you to my friend Christine Carter. Some of you may recognize her name. Many of her articles can be seen over at www.1Corinthians13Parenting.com. Her message is positive, faith-filled, real, and typically contains a good dose of humor. If you have teen or preteen you will want to check out her newest book: Follow Jesus: A Christian Teen’s Guide to Navigating the Online World (see the information below on how to get a hold of a copy for your teen). I have already read her book and I can tell you it is an excellent resource for parents to give their kiddos. The on-line world our children live in is very different from the one in which most of us grew up. Imagine how hard it must be as a teen to live out your faith while walking through or around social media. Chrissy’s book will help your young person do just that.
Here are 7 interview questions Chrissy responds to about FOLLOW JESUS.
Question 1: What is Follow Jesus: A Christian Teen’s Guide to Navigating the Online World about and why did you write this book?
Follow Jesus: A Christian Teen’s Guide to Navigating the Online World was written for Christian teens to learn more about their faith and understand what it means to actually Follow Jesus in the online world. I have two teens with iPhones and I run a teen ministry, so I know all too well the importance in teaching our kids how to honor their Christian values every time their fingers touch those screens. I am aware that many of our Christian teens need to be educated on who Jesus is and what it means to follow Him. I’ve found that these kids aren’t really sure about what they believe and find Christianity confusing because they don’t really understand who Jesus is and what having a relationship with Him means. If our teens don’t have a strong faith foundation and an intimate relationship with Christ, how can they be Christ-like in the online world? And not only do they need to establish the groundwork for their faith, but they need to develop the skills and awareness in how that translates into their behavior on their phones. This book does just that.
Question 2: What topics does the book address?
Follow Jesus outlines eight essential biblical principles of the Christian faith: Love, Grace, Humility, Compassion, Truth, Wisdom, Integrity, and Faithfulness.
Each lesson includes a detailed description of each Christian value, pertinent scripture to study, online goal-setting worksheets, memory verses, checklists, and talking tips. It’s important our teens understand each of these facets of our faith and learn how they translate into the choices they make in their lives, and that includes what they do on their phones. This guide gives our teen readers a comprehensive layout of all the intimate biblical details they may not fully understand when growing in their relationship with Jesus. My hope is that reading and working through this book will both nourish their hearts for Christ and equip them to live out their faith with courage and confidence.
Question 3: Is this workbook for kids to complete on their own?
It would be ideal for teens to go through this book with a trusted Christian mentor- either one-on-one and/or in a group setting. I wrote this book to be used in any Christian ministries, schools, organizations, and of course, our own homes. It is my hope that church leaders and counselors would find this to be a valuable resource to use with their youth ministries. I also believe teaching this book in Christian schools would greatly benefit those students.
Question 4: Is this book for a specific Christian denomination?
Follow Jesus is not written for any specific denomination, but rather it addresses the biblical teachings of Jesus and the fundamental basics of the Christian faith that all Christians uphold.
Question 5: How long will it take to read through this book with teens?
I would highly recommend teaching this book over the length of ten weeks for any group or one-on-one discipleship. Reading through each principle each week and working through the Bible study and setting goals deserves time for both conversation and follow up. It’s important to read the book with careful intention and make sure our teens truly understand the concepts the book teaches as well as how they can apply them in their online activity. Add to those eight weeks, spending the first week on the introduction and the final week on the conclusion.
Question 6: When does it come out and where can I purchase the book?
Follow Jesus: A Christian Teen’s Guide to Navigating the Online World comes out on April 16th. You can purchase it on Amazon.
Question 7: What other advice do you have for Christian parents with teens?
As parents, we have a responsibility to model all the Christian values outlined in this book. We can teach our kids everything we know about our faith and what it means to follow Jesus, but if we aren’t actively walking with the Lord and practicing what we preach, we are deceiving and misleading our kids. Nobody is perfect . We all have our weaknesses and struggles, but we must set an example of what it truly means to live our lives committed to having a personal relationship with Jesus.
Parents have a powerful influence in our kids’ lives and how they view our Christian faith. What they see in your life matters, like how you manage your own screen time as a follower of Christ. Make sure you set a godly example for them to follow, so they see the impact the saving grace of Jesus Christ can have in their own lives too. We are their best teachers and we must take that role seriously. Be mindful of this critical truth and remember, it’s not about being perfect or pious- it’s all about being forgiven and loved. If our teens see God’s glorious grace and love poured out in your own life, they will long for it in theirs.
Pray for your kids. Pray with your kids. Teach them that our Lord is full of mercy and wisdom and faithfulness. Be God’s greatest advocate through showing your kids how you do life with Him.
Let’s be living testimonies for our kids to witness what an incredible God we serve, and gently walk them into His outstretched arms every single day.
Read to here to find out more about Christine Carter and how to get her book!
Christine Carter writes at TheMomCafe.com where she hopes to encourage mothers everywhere through her humor, inspiration, and faith. Her work is published on several online publications including Your Teen for Parents, Parenting Tweens and Teens, Moms of Tweens and Teens, Scary Mommy, Motherly, For Every Mom, and Her View from Home. She is the author of “Help and Hope While You’re Healing: A woman’s guide toward wellness while recovering from injury, surgery, or illness.” and “Follow Jesus: A Christian Teen’s Guide to Navigating the Online World.” Click here to head over to Amazon for this valuable resource.
Photo by Paul Hanaoka on Unsplash