‘Meet them with Jesus’: Responding Biblically to Our Kids’ Problems

When people ask me what’s the best parenting advice I’ve been given, I never know what to say because I have the amazing privilege of hearing so many little nuggets from so many unexpected places. 

I recently had just one of those moments when I interviewed Sadie Robertson, daughter of Willie and Korie Robertson, from the hit show Duck Dynasty. If you haven’t already listened to “Sadie Robertson: A Podcast Every Mom and Teen Needs to Hear,” you just have to do it. And if you have teen/tween daughters, it’s a must-listen with them as well. 

Hands down, one of my favorite things Sadie said in the interview related to how her mom approached problems Sadie brought to her when Sadie was growing up. She said that no matter what was going on in her life, when she went to her mom for advice, she always “met her with Jesus.” 

Drop the mic, right? 

I’ve been letting that marinate the last few weeks and thinking about how we can implement such great wisdom and meet our kids, in every situation, with Jesus. 

And, honestly, I realized that maybe I haven’t taken time to search God’s word for his wisdom in many of the issues my kids have come to me with in the past. I tend to spout out whatever comes to mind or speak from my past experience instead of having the automatic default of going to God’s word. 

Oftentimes, when our kids come to us with the crisis of the week (day), we don’t have time to formulate a biblical response if we haven’t thought about it a little bit in advance and done our homework. Yes, the Holy Spirit can and will speak through our words—but it’s also a great help when we have Scripture planted in our hearts and we’ve prayed through some of the issues they will inevitably face. 

With this in mind, I created a “cheat sheet,” a quick Scripture reference guide for some of the more common problems our kids will face. I’m keeping my portion of the blog short this week in hopes that you’ll take some time to read through the verses below (and even memorize a few). 

I’ll be praying that the Lord will plant his word in our hearts so the next time our kids come to us with a problem, we’re ready to meet them with Jesus!

Purity

  • “Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, long with those who call on the Lord out of a pure hope” (2 Timothy 2:22). 
  • “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body” (1 Corinthians 6:18).
  • “How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word” (Psalm 119:9). 
  • “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

Failure 

  • “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:9–10). 
  • “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Psalm 73:26). 
  • “For the righteous falls seven times and rises again, but the wicked stumble in times of calamity” (Proverbs 24:16).
  • “I can do all things through him who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). 

Priorities

  • “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12). 
  • “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:15–16). 
  • “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal” (Matthew 6:19–21). 
  • “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17).

Depression

  • “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things” (Philippians 4:8).
  • “It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed” (Deuteronomy 31:8).
  • “I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure.  He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord” (Psalm 40:1–3).
  • “When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles” (Psalm 34:17).

Body Image/Self-Esteem

  • “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10).
  • “But the Lord said to Samuel, ‘Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart’” (1 Samuel 16:7).
  • “I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well” (Psalm 139:14).
  • “Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised” (Proverbs 31:30).

Fear

  • “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:7).
  • “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?” (Psalm 56:3–4).
  • “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10).
  • “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid” (John 14:27).

Purpose

  • “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19–20).
  • “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you” (John 15:16).
  • “The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps” (Proverbs 16:9). 
  • “The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man” (Ecclesiastes 12:13).

Friendships

  • “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).
  • “Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm” (Proverbs 13:20).
  • “A dishonest man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends” (Proverbs 16:28).
  • “Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!” (Ecclesiastes 4:9–10).