Quite a Few ‘Emerging Adults’ Are Smoking Pot Every Day

I found this article concerning marijuana use among emerging adults – and wanted to pass it along.

 

Credit: Rafael Castillo

Recently, The Lancet published the first-ever report of marijuana use by Americans aged 12 and over between 2002 and 2014 using data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. The data and a discussion of their public health implications are included as part of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

A lot changed, marijuana-wise, between 2002 and 2014. State laws related to marijuana loosened considerably. Public support for legalization climbed significantly. And public perception of risk of using marijuana dropped off. How have these changes affected marijuana use and addiction?

Here is the complete article.

Almost 7% of emerging adults report using marijuana on a DAILY basis.  Those who report alcohol abuse is about 12%.  As those who minister to emerging adults, we need to be aware of this trend, and know how to respond.

The rise of marijuana and alcohol in this life phase could be due to several factors including:

  • newly acquired income
  • access to the “forbidden fruit” as they step into adulthood
  • independence from family
  • stress due to their high mobility rate and characteristics of this life phase

The article encourages those around them to ask them about marijuana use.

 

 

 

Hatred for that Cat in the Cradle.

I listen to various types of music – disco, Motown, classic rock, and current tunes.  There are very few classic songs that I do not love.

However, there is one song that I have hated my entire life.  A song that makes my skin crawl.  A song that will always make me change the radio station.  “Cat’s in the Cradle” is a 1974 folk rock song by Harry Chapin from the album Verities & Balderdash. 

The song is too depressing, and I still hate it.  Apparently my children feel the same way, because they now throw a fit anytime they hear it.

The song was highlighted in an episode of the Middle.

Here is the original scene.  I am a fan of the Middle – Here is a post that I dedicated to the show.   The Middle will give parents an outside perspective of the issues facing emerging adults – with ALOT of laughter.

The second video definitely lightens the mood.  Here is the video.

While in the midst of raising your children, remember that like other life stages – emerging adulthood has its trials and blessings.

Remember to minimize the trials, and focus on the blessings. 

 

 

Preparing for Adolescence/Directions to Adulthood Seminars

I am excited about my double-header workshops for parents.  Both workshops tie into my parental E-VAC Plan (or how to one day get them to evacuate!)  The E-VAC plan focuses on the three developmental tasks of adulthood:  Vocation, Autonomy, and Community.

 

These seminars are designed for parents of children, adolescents, and emerging adults, who want to understand more about human development, and how to prepare their children for the Journey Ahead.

Here are the workshop descriptions:

Preparing for Adolescence:

We will examine the facts and fables of human adolescence.  You will gain an understanding of the developmental characteristics of adolescents and discuss how to equip them for adulthood.  We will discuss practical methods of impacting your child’s spiritual development that will give them a faith that will stick beyond high school.  You will walk away feeling equipped and encouraged in your own journey as a parent.       

Directions to Adulthood – Preparing them for the Journey Ahead

Why does it seem that adolescents are taking longer to grow up?  We will examine the causes of delayed development, and solutions being proposed.  We will examine the biblical basis of adulthood, and how parents can help adolescents successfully move forward.  This seminar will help you better understand your children, and encourage you during this new phase of parenting.      

If you are interested in having Dr. Boyd come and speak to your community, please contact him at gdavid@earesources.org.

Bringing home more than their laundry – Post from Steve Argue

The team at Fuller Youth Institute have brought great resources like Sticky Faith, and Growing Young.  Share this great article to encourage and equip parents for when their child comes home for winter break.

Connecting with college students over break: they’re bringing home more than their laundry

Photo by Paul Green

 

Parents all over the country are anticipating their young adult kids coming home for the holiday break. For some, it’s the first time they’ve been home since they sent them off and set them up for the college school year. Home will feel like home again.

Likely, they’ll bring their laundry, too. 

Here is the rest of the piece.

Steven Argue joined the Fuller Theological Seminary faculty in June 2015 in a hybrid role as assistant professor of youth, family, and culture and as applied research strategist with the Fuller Youth Institute (FYI).

 

Preaching to your Adult Child – Here is Their Perspective.

Image from page 336 of "The history of Methodism" (1902) from Flickr via Wylio

© 1902 Internet Archive Book Images, Flickr | PD | via Wylio

If you are a parent, then there are times when your child feels as if you are preaching at them.  If you don’t know your favorite topics, just ask them (if you are brave).

This article written by an emerging adult explains the thought process for your child as you discuss issues that you don’t agree upon – including faith.  While this article may not reflect the relationship between you and your child, there is much for parents to learn from this writer’s perspective.

Within five minutes of starting the hour-long car ride, she asked me if I wanted to explain my theological beliefs to her.

Awkward.

At this point, I had three options…

Read the entire article – HERE.

I wanted to summarize the points, but found too much that I wanted my readers to see and feel.  But I do want to highlight the author’s main conclusion:

I ask ‘when the preaching will end’ because with conservatives I consistently feel that I am being preached at by people who don’t care to understand me as a person, while with liberals I feel that I am becoming a part of a movement which is built on compassion and mutual understanding.

Within our homes, churches, and the public square – communication is key.  

Most Christians ignore the role of the Holy Spirit, and focus on conversion tactics when speaking with those outside the church – including their children.  Dialogue and diversity are welcome in today’s culture, but when someone in a conversation feels the need to be right – it will turn people from the beauty of the gospel.

This author is a follower of Jesus who was raised in an evangelical home.  Unfortunately, this emerging adult found the “extra baggage” of present-day Evangelical culture (which I use to refer to anything not required by the original tenants of the movement) to be completely overpowering to their spiritual journey.  I believe that some emerging adults find these beliefs so restrictive that they abandon the faith completely.

Related Links:

David - Prof 2Dr. G. David Boyd is the managing director of EA Resources – a non-profit designed to equip parents and churches to engage emerging adults.  He is also the founder of the EA Network – a community of people who serve and love emerging adults.

 

 

You are not alone – A Bible Study for Parents of Young Adults

 

I had the privilege of meeting with Corey Magstadt who runs a ministry to serve young adults in the community of Chaska, Minnesota.  Corey seeks to minister to emerging adults and their parents through his Launch ministry.  After years of running support groups for parents, he wrote a resource called, “You are Not Alone.”

Image result for you are not alone book corey magstadtParenting emerging adults while rewarding is sometimes a difficult job.  Parents often feel isolated because their words might embarrass either themselves or their adult children.  This is especially true in the church where parents often feel as if they have failed.  Corey writes, “Sadly, our churches often forget that one of the primary roles of the body of Christ is to be a hospital for sick and broken people.”

A desperate need exists for safe places for parents to share their experiences.  Corey envisions small groups that meet on a regular basis to share a part of this journey. I believe that groups could be led by churches, educational institutions, non-profits, or other social organizations who have a passion for emerging adults and their parents.

The book includes a discussion guide for each lesson.  Each week begins in a similar fashion including time for each individual to share.  Then a different topic is discussed revolving around the specific needs of emerging adults and the transition of their role as parents.   A Facilitator’s Guide is available which provides practical advice to launching your own group.  It includes supplemental information for each of the 12 sessions.

Corey is the founder of Launch Ministry, a faith-based non-profit organization established to expose emerging adults between 18-25 years old to opportunities that will promote healthy, productive transitions into adulthood.  Launch Ministry assists young people in a holistic transition by providing them with tools to develop life skills, opportunities to lead and serve, and by promoting spiritual and character formation.  Corey lives in Cologne, MN with his wife Lori, and their children.

You can purchase You are not alone–  Particpant’s Guide here.

You can purchase You are not alone- Facilatator’s Guide here.

Millennials are now Parents – What does this mean for the church?

Time Magazine recently featured an article about Millennials examining how they parent.  The transition of Millennials as lazy, narcissistic children into parents is happening quickly (The words lazy and narcissistic came from a previous Time article).  According to Time, “Millennial parents number more than 22 million in the U.S., with about 9,000 babies born to them each day. This growing cohort of parents is digitally native, ethnically diverse, late-marrying, and less bound by traditional gender roles than any generation before it.”  (Source)

According to Time, “Millennial parents are attempting to run their families as mini-democracies, seeking consensus from spouses, kids and extended friend circles on even the smallest decisions. They seek wisdom from those closest to them, rather than the highly-marketed “parenting experts.”  They’re backing away from the overscheduled days of their youth, preferring a more responsive, less directorial approach to activities.”

Here is the full article.

As Millennials become parents, churches will need to respond to connect to this new generations.

Connectivity with their children.

Take my hand from Flickr via Wylio

© 2012 Stephan Hochhaus, Flickr | CC-BY | via Wylio

Through the use of technology, Millennials are used to being in constant contact with their children.   Most childcare centers use the latest technology to keep Millennials informed and connected with their children.  They don’t want a paper describing the lesson when they can have a picture of their child showing it.  Millennials are now the main clientele of the nursery, and their values should affect how we serve them.  The days of publicly humiliating them by removing them from the service, or flashing their child’s number on the screen should be over.  In order to provide Millennials with the security they desire use an app or a simple text message.

 Gender Roles as Parents

Today’s millennials do not hold traditional gender roles.  While, the percentage of stay-at-home mothers is increasing (with the recovery of the economy, almost 29 percent of women stay at home with their children), marital roles are more fluid.  Train your staff and volunteers to avoid assumptions and comments based upon traditional gender roles so as to not offend visitors or regular attenders.  [Load graph of Stay at home mothers from Pew Research.]  Avoid sermon illustrations and media pics that present one perspective of family life.

 Use, but don’t abuse Social Media

© 2012 Jason Howie, Flickr | CC-BY | via Wylio

“Eight-four percent of Millennials are social media users, with 66% of Gen X on social networks and 44% of Baby Boomers. According to the study, more than half of the U.S. users on Twitter are Millennials.” (Source)  We should not abuse these platforms to push our own programs, but use these connections to become involved in the lives of people. The appeal of social media is snap shot of people’s lives, and not desperate pleas to come to your events.  Mind your manners on social media, or you eventually will either be ignored or deleted.  As a church, use social media in order to understand their daily lives and know their values.

While it is truly impossible to describe how Millennials as a generation will parent, research reveals that they hold different values, beliefs, and perspectives.  According to the Time article, Millennials want their children to be, “Open-minded. empathetic. questioning.”  These differences will change their expectations for church ministries and staff members.

Church leaders should begin to ask how these values will express themselves as their children enter other ministries of the church.  Our nursery workers will be the first to experience Millennials as parents, and they will lead us into this change.

Leave a comment about how Millennials having children will change the church.

David - Prof 2

Dr. G. David Boyd is the Managing Director of EA Resources, a non-profit designed to equip churches and parents to minister to emerging adults.

3 Ways to Not Talk to Your Child about Sex – Guest Post

Messages about sex fill our society, and many of the messages are not healthy.  In our sex-saturated society it is crucial that we speak to our children about their sexuality.

As fathers, it can be intimidating, but don’t worry…

  •   you don’t have to cover it all at once (but it should be the first of many conversations).
  •   you don’t have to know everything about it.
  •   you don’t have to be smooth and polished.

However, don’t wait until you feel ready or you may never do it.  Here is an article that I recently found that provides parents some pointers when talking to your children about sex.

In my conversations with emerging adults and teens around the country, one theme continually roars up to the surface…no one is talking with Christians about sexuality. I know that kind of statement colors way too many people with the same drab crayon, but my own research, and that of a lot of other good people studying the sexuality among Christian folks, makes it pretty clear that the exceptions are few – especially in the mainstream evangelical world.

Read the remainder of the article HERE!

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Picture Source: http://adammearse.com

Adam Mearse is a pastor and blogger at www.AdamMearse.com.

When Does A Boy Become A Man In His Mother’s Eyes?

I recently came across this well-written article, and I wanted to share it with my readers.  The author, Melissa Schultz, is a mother who is transitioning from a full house into an empty nest.  She shares her mother’s perspective on what it means to be a man.

Here is the article.

2013-05-31-boysshavingsmaller.jpg

The positives of this article:

  1.  It doesn’t link manhood to various traditional, yet lacking markers – like having children, making money, or growing a beard.
  2. Great portrayal of a mother’s struggle to allow her children to grow up.  “And then, even then, when we see our sons as men, sometimes, we still secretly see them as our little boys. Because we want to. Not because they are.”
  3. Gives several inadequate markers of manhood, but doesn’t fully answer the question, “What makes a man?”  Her answer is, “For me, a boy becomes a man when he lets himself fall in love. It says he’s ready and willing to discover who he really is, to take risks; to care for someone other than himself.”     While the ability to fall in love can be a mark of knowing who they really are (self-discovery), take risks (courage), and caring for others (self-less), these characteristics are still greatly lacking.

I think that all emerging adults regularly ask themselves if they are truly an adult.  As children, they long every day to arrive, and yet often never fully feel satisfied in their arrival.  These uncertain feelings can lead our children to a lack of confidence and confusion.

While we can never adequately define adulthood, we can work to give our children the confidence that they need in their journey.  During my research, one of the powerful interview moments that I had was when one young man told me that he knew he was a man because, “My dad told me so.”

Take time today to encourage your children in their pursuit of adulthood.  May you be a channel of confidence that they need to take the next step.

Here are some additional articles that encourage you (or someone you love) in this pursuit.

Dr. G. David Boyd is the Founder and Managing Director of EA Resources, a non-profit designed to encourage emerging adults and their parents.

The First Two Weeks

 

© 2014 Kevin Dooley, Flickr | CC-BY | via Wylio

During the first two weeks of college, your child is facing much bigger issues than getting lost on campus, and running out of clean underwear.   Kara Powell and Chap Clark in their book Sticky Faith say, “Over and over, students have told us that the first two weeks at college are when they make key decisions about drinking and other high-risk behaviors, right along with choosing whether to go to church or to a campus ministry.”  (Powell and Clark)

In a college setting, social groups are quickly formed often based on where you live, and involvement (sport teams, music groups, or other interest groups).  The warm friendly smiles that you receive on campus while visiting, quickly fade as people are no longer looking for more friends.  Petrified of being left alone, students often make decisions based on their need for social connection.

Students quickly learn that their decisions about alcohol and other behavior will quickly ostracize them from others.  It doesn’t take too many evenings left alone in the dorm before feelings of loneliness can overwhelm even the deepest resolve.

How do you prepare a student for those first two weeks?

1.  Teach them to walk across the room and extend a hand.  Teaching your child basic skills in how to make new friends is crucial for this new phase of life.  Many adolescents face little change in their circle of friends during high school, and have forgotten how to make new friends.  Encouraging your adolescent to always be looking for new friends will help them keep their social skills, and prepare them for the future.  As a child moves away from home, emerging adults meet their first test, whether than can develop their own community.

2.  Teach them how to find a Spiritual Community.  Most adolescents have never picked out a church before.  They don’t know what questions to ask, or what to look for?  Your child might be overwhelmed by the available options, and not try.  According to Sticky Faith Research,  “40% of students feel prepared to find a new church.”  Parents need to prepare their child for find a new Christian community.

Use on-line tools to help your student check out churches around their campus.  LiveAbove.com is an outreach of the Youth Transition Network: a coalition of youth, college and military ministries working together to transition students from high school to college/career  (For more information about YTN go to www.youthtransitionnetwork.org).

3.  Remember last minute cramming, isn’t very helpful.  One emerging adult said, “I really appreciated that they didn’t give me a bunch of last minute “advice” about how to live life on my own. I feel like the drop off is not the time or place! If they want to give me life lessons, giving nagging reminders as they drop me off isn’t the best!”

It is not the absence of information that causes students to make poor decisions, it is often the lack of will.  The prophet Isaiah makes this point when he says,  “Although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes you will see them. Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.”   Even though you are not with them, your child will hear your voice as they are making their own decisions.

First2Weeks_v1 (1)4.  Pray, and ask others to join you during this time.  Pray for godly influences including:  friends, ministries, and other adults.  Encourage your church community to do a prayer campaign for college students during the fall as students are leaving for school.  Join our prayer campaign.

Ultimately, you have no control over the first two weeks or any week of your child’s experiences at college.  You can only surrender yourself, and your child to the Lord in prayer.  This is what makes the first two weeks so very difficult.

Resources

Powell, Kara and Chap Clark.  Sticky Faith:  Everyday ideas to build lasting faith in your kids.