Counseling Teens and Young Adults – The Golden Rule

“And king Rehoboam took counsel with the old men that had stood before Solomon his father while he yet lived, saying, What counsel give ye me to return answer to this people?” II Chronicles 10:6

“But he forsook the counsel which the old men gave him, and took counsel with the young men that were brought up with him, that stood before him.”  II Chronicles 10:8

“…and king Rehoboam forsook the counsel of the old men, And answered them after the advice of the young men,…”  II Chronicles 10:13,14

 The story of King Rehoboam forsaking the counsel of the older men and heeding the fleshly counsel of inexperience from the younger men resulted in the revolt of ten tribes. (I would hate to have been one of those younger men whose ungodly counsel led to such a disastrous outcome!) When I read this passage, I often wonder how things could have been very different if the king had taken heed to the older men. I think of how the younger men could have made that difference if they had only pointed King Rehoboam back to the wisdom of the aged.

When given the opportunity to influence/counsel teenagers and young adults, we need to first consider the time when our own children or even grandchildren may be seeking counsel. As we ask ourselves, “If this were my son or daughter, what counsel would I be praying that they receive?”…we, in turn, should carefully and prayerfully do likewise. “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.”  Matthew 7:12   I don’t know of a parent that would not want their advice-seeking son or daughter pointed back to them. Never say never. We would all like to think that our children will always heed our counsel, but in this day where so many young peoples’ hearts are being turned from their parents, that may not be the case. When our children or grandchildren are young, or even if we do not have children, we may not be able to look that far ahead to when they are grown, but the time will come sooner than we think. And, when it does, I am sure we will be very grateful if we have, in wisdom and spiritual maturity, planted seeds of respect toward the parents of young people who may have sought our counsel. “…for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Galatians 6:7 On the other hand, I am quite sure we will forever regret sowing seeds of disrespect and usurping the authority of parents whose children have sought our advice by neglecting to point them back to their own God-given authority.

“And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers…” Malachi 4:6

~ Rachel ~

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