Watch your anger
We all know that there is nothing inherently wrong with anger. That is if we can express it at the right time, for the right reason, to the right extent.
So, am I the only one who routinely taxes it up?
In my experience teenagers “hear” our anger in word, tone, body language and shut off to the message. Our anger “static” blurs what needs to be heard, leaving an angry parent or teacher squaring off with a disenchanted teen. A lose–lose scenario; no-one wins here.
Unless you have credibility in the eyes of your teen. Long, long gone are the days where merely being an adult ensured respect from teens.
Today you have to win that respect, you have to put in the hard yards, you have to be a credible adult, a believable role-model.
As distressing as this is, I’m not sure that it’s an altogether bad thing. (When the cane was removed from schools we bemoaned it, but it did force us to look for real and lasting solutions to disciplinary problems.) Perhaps similarly, we as adults are being forced to look more at ourselves and not as much at the youth and their “woes.”
I’m pretty sure that where we have won our teens respect, our righteous anger will be better understood and accepted.
James 1:19 provides us with the uncomfortable reminder that “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.”
With the teen this is critical; we live in a world that applauds the aggressive and angry solution to our problems; we must show them otherwise.