You can celebrate a birthday, let a friend know you are thinking of them, encourage others, receive encouragement, discuss questions, and stay up to date with family.
Today, I love the question brought up by my friend Rebekah...
This one Facebook post has created a conversation among many. It prompts us to look deeper than our own thought and to really seek what God has to say. It is seeking brothers and sisters in Christ, whether student or parent, to dig into His word to see what He says on this topic. THIS is what we need to do more often with our teens. Not just dictate an answer, not that there aren't times to do so, but to teach them we are all stilling learning and growing in Christ together.
I was immediately drawn back to author Tim Kimmel and his response on the subject. Tim is the author of "Grace Based Parenting". It is one of our favorite books on parenting. He has an entire chapter on the Freedom to be Different. In that chapter he discusses the difference in fad and fashions, which will inevitably bring up tattoos and piercings.
He points out that in Leviticus 19:28 "Do not cut your bodies for the dead or put tattoo marks on yourself. I am the Lord.", is referring to tattoos that identify a person with pagan deity or pagan practice. We take this verse out of context when it isn't referring to all tattoos, it is talking about specific-type of tattoos to pagan gods. Does scripture have something to say about a satanic symbol, YES. This verse doesn't necessarily forbid the tattoo of John 3:16.
Does this mean we allow our children to get a tattoo? Not at this time. Does it mean we would forbid it forever? Not necessarily.
Again I will quote Tim Kimmel when he shares his discussion with his kids.
I'm glad we can talk about tattoos because these days, tattoos are very popular. But they are also a fad. Because they are a fad, and because they must be painfully applied, leave a permanent mark, and can be removed only through an expensive and painful procedure, I'd rather you not get one. There is a great principle that says, 'Never sacrifice the permanent on the altar of the immediate.' what you might think is a great idea now many not look so great a couple of years - twenty years-from now. But you'll be stuck with it. Also, a tattoo could affect some of your career options, both short term and long term. And the bigger issue is that the Bible says if you get married, your body doesn't belong to you but is the property of your spouse as in 1 Corinthians 7:4. Since there is a strong likelihood that you will be married, you ought to wait to see if a tattoo is okay with your spouse. Regardless of any of these issues, your mother and I are assigned the financial responsibility for the upkeep of your body. Until you are completely financing yourself, we'd prefer you defer to our wishes on this. Once you are on your own, if you want to get the map of downtown Phoenix tattooed on your face, it will be completely your call."We should be having more discussions with our teens than just a flat NO. Now is our chance to dig in and learn together what God's word says. Then it is our responsibility as a parent to guide our teens into wise decision making. And that will often be a process, a type of letting the rope out and drawing it back in, as we let them make some decisions on their own, some we ask they defer to us, and others we process and learn together.
Next time your child wants to follow a fad, what are you going to do?
- Is it a biblical or moral issue?
- Is it a practical or financial issue?
- Is it a personal issue with you or them?