In most cases children and youth get themselves in trouble due to things that are going on at home. Not in all cases though because we do have to allow for the inherent evil of our fallen nature. If adults cannot withstand the temptations of our flesh why would we expect children to do better? In any case, a lot of troubled children do what they do because of situations at home that parents may not even be aware of or are acutely aware of. Poverty is sometimes the problem, as is divorce. Abuses touch off generations of trouble and neglect can compound it. Parents struggling with addictions can also pass those stresses on to their children including work alcoholics. There are many various problems that find our children turning to the wrong crowd for escape.
Thankfully we have a heavenly Father who knows all that and who is a perfect parent. He has richly blessed us with a ton of spiritual blessings, as we looked at last time, and he provides daily blessings as well. Of course our eyes need to be open to see and to accept these blessings and we have to stop being spoiled about the whole thing. In fact, Peter tells us that it is because of these blessings and the fact we have such a great Dad, we should be propelled into one set of actions:
Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: "Be holy, because I am holy." (1 Peter 1:13-16)
In most cases, children, who have parents with great parenting skills, turn out well rounded and ready for most things in life. Children who have proper nutrition and the few essential tools necessary for life remain on track as great contributors to our society. Children who have been given the example of good morals also end up being people of good morals. In the same way, those of us who realize the incredible blessings we have in Jesus, provided by our Father, should react in a positive manner.
We should be a people of action and not mere words, willing to do what the Word says and not just read it. We should have an element of self-control about us as we realize that our lives are lived for the glory of God and not for our own glory. We have a different hope in this world. It is not to become rich and satisfied in life or to become successful and satisfied in life; it is to be changed into the likeness of Jesus so that we may live with our Father for eternity. It is as obedient children that we turn away from temptation because what our Father offers us is so much better than anything our evil nature has to offer. Sin satisfies only for a moment and then disaster strikes. The righteousness of Jesus is more satisfying than sin and lasts for eternity. When we fully comprehend this and experience it, all temptations loose their grip on us and obedience is an easier matter to accept.
The fact is we have been called to be an holy people, set aside for God's purpose. We are dearly loved and cherished, this is the reason our Father has provided us with this thing called grace but we are not to abuse it. Instead we need to have the desire to be transformed into the likeness of Jesus, so we can live lives that honour our Father, who is a very good Father and deserves our honour every day by living holy lives. After all the blessings our Father has poured out on us, the least we can do is be the obedient children he deserves. Take a moment and refresh your understanding with Colossians 3.