Anger in teens is a common issue, especially within the church. How do we help parents who are exasperated by their teenager’s anger? Tripp offers several helps for parents:
- Be honest about what you’re facing (it is difficult to be open that there is an angry teen in your household (Tripp also discusses the 3 faces of anger: Upward anger, inward anger, and outward anger) – the problem with a teenager is that he/she is like you – being willing to face that is key – the Psalms are in the Bible to keep us honest (we do fail, we do not live up to God’s standards, etc.) – teen anger does have roots in some very real things (living in a broken world));
- Admit your helplessness (You cannot control the heart of your teenager (common human weapons used in conflict with teens include: 1. Threats, 2. Manipulation, 3. Guilt));
- Examine your heart (“Why does your teens anger make you so angry?” – your heart will be revealed just as much as your teen’s in moments of anger – God will take you where you do not want to go in order to produce in you what you could not achieve on your own – something is wrong when our eyes are only on the teenager);
- Make love, not war (Don’t allow yourself to get into a war of words with your teen);
- Be strategic in your responses (Tripp discusses three kinds of relationships: 1. Preventative, 2. Corrective, 3. Protective);
- Remember the Gospel (Anger is a like a fortified city in the heart – the divine weapons that Christ gives can break down and overcome the strongholds in our hearts).
Key Scripture: 2 Corinthians 10:3-6; James 2