This type of hands-on service deepens a teen's acknowledgment of personal sin and heightens the realization of Christ's sacrifice. Said one 13-year-old, "It was kind of awe-inspiring because it is incredible to think about you carrying His cross that he is about to die on.... It felt like meeting a president, only a hundred times more cool, to be able to carry the cross of your Lord and Savior." Watching and discussing movies together, such as "Jesus of Nazareth" or "Jesus Christ Superstar," offer teachable moments.

Typical Question: Did this really happen?
"That's a great question, which people have debated for centuries. The Bible and other ancient books say that it did. Let's explore that question together." A good book to read with your teen is "Jesus Among Other Gods" (The Teen Version) by Ravi Zacharias. The object is to keep the conversation going.

In every age group, it is important to assess your child's sensitivity. If the child starts to cry or says she can't watch, participate, or talk anymore, give her the space she needs to regroup. Introduce discussions of the crucifixion in a gentle manner, with the exit door clearly marked: "We can talk about this as long or short as you want..." For the more sensitive child, make smaller exposures to the material and see how he or she is doing before continuing. When watching a video, you can use the mute and fast-forward buttons to modulate and reduce intensity and make the situation manageable.

General Guidelines

  • Increase realism over time.
  • Increase intensity over time.
  • Move from general to specific over time.
  • Let your child's sensitivity lead.

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