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The Distaff: The "In Crowd" VS In Christ

The following joke appeared in the July 2004 edition of Reader’s Digest:

Reporter interviewing a 104-year-old woman: "What is the best thing about being 104?  She replied, "No peer pressure."

While this is humorous as an age joke, it’s not so funny when you’re a teenager facing the very real challenge of peer pressure.  This is especially true for Christian teens.  Children and adults are either oblivious to such pressure, or are confident and secure enough not to care.  Most teens, however, do care about what other people think.

When I was a teenager, lo these 20 years ago, we referred to this phenomenon as being part of the "in crowd."  I remember an article in my school newspaper about what was "in" and what was "out."  Nike shoes were in, Adidas was out.  Walkman radios were in, transistor radios were out.  Three-wheelers were in, motorbikes were out. Thinking back on that list, it was really about materialism and excluding kids whose parents didn’t have the money for whatever was "in" at the time.

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The Distaff: Where Is My Reverence?

In the last job I held outside the home before becoming a mother, my coworker was Jewish.  As she explained it, she was "culturally a Jew, not religiously."  She felt a lot of resentment toward her parents because, "They never taught me what to believe about God.  They didn’t raise me to be a Jew, but they didn’t want me to be a Christian either."

It’s unfortunate that many "enlightened" parents today have the same attitude.  They think that what their children believe about God is an issue for the children to decide when they enter adulthood.  The inspired writers of the Bible knew better.  Paul told Ephesian fathers, "Do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord."  And surely my Jewish coworker’s parents had read Deuteronomy 6:6-7, "And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up."

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