When our babies are tiny we never dream of them growing up and becoming a rebellious teenager. Not that it happens with every teen, but most will go through a stage where they want to challenge authority and blaze their own trail in life- Which is not necessarily a bad thing. Our job as christian parents is to guide them, teach them, give them boundaries, and a safety net so when or if they do stray into a destructive rebellious path, we are there to help them back with unconditional love and truth.
“Train a child in the way he should go,
and when he is old he will not turn from it.”
Worries Of A Parent
There isn’t a shortage of things for parents to worry about and pray for from the minute our kids are born. And while there are many moments of joy, the teenage years can make family life especially difficult at times for both parent and child.
We as parents have to discern when to give our teens the space they desire while at the same time knowing when to step in with boundaries and discipline as needed. The teen years are a time of growth, hormonal changes, development, it’s when our sons and daughters are discovering who the are and who they want to become. While at the same time dealing with specific challenges like peer pressure, low self-esteem, and keeping up on social media appearances. Things today are not at all like when we parents were in high school. The challenges are different, we’re all entering uncharted waters.
What Is a Rebellious Spirit?
Bible.com says this:
Most often Rebellion is translated in the bible as disobedience.
Rebellion is disobedience to God.
The purpose of the spirit of rebellion is to block a believer from thriving, but by God’s grace, a rebellious person can still have access to God through Christ Jesus.
Wikipedia.org says this about the word “rebellion”
Rebellion is a refusal of obedience. It originates from a sentiment of disapproval and manifests itself by the refusal to obey authority.
For rebellion is like the sin of divination,
and arrogance like the evil of idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the Lord…
-1 Samuel 15:23
Who Was Rebellious In The Bible?
The spirit of rebellion has been something humans have dealt with since the very beginnings of time. It’s not new, we just notice it more in today’s day and age because it’s so widespread.
And it not only affects young people, every age group struggles with a rebellious spirit at one point in our lives.
The prophet Jonah is probably the most famous for his act of rebellion. When God asked him to go preach a message of judgement and repentance to the people of Nineveh, Jonah flat out refused simply because he knew God is a God of mercy!
In Jonah 4:2 he states “I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity.”
Jonah didn’t want God to give Nineveh a second chance if they truly repented from their wicked ways. He rebelled because he wasn’t going to get his way.
In his stubborn refusal and rebellion, he tries to run away from God….to do his own thing. He ends up suffering the consequence of being swallowed up by a great fish (Jonah 2).
When people rebel against God, or teens rebel against their parents, they can expect consequences to come from it.
The beautiful thing about our heavenly father is that he loves us and still hears us in our distress. Ready to help us out of the mess we’ve gotten ourselves in.
From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God. He said:
“In my distress I called to the Lord,
and he answered me.
From the depths of the grave I called for help,
and you listened to my cry.”
How Do You Pray Over Children?
The best way to pray for your teenage child is to use god’s word as your guide in daily prayer. Use the power of the almighty God as your instrument of love and strength especially when you’re feeling discouraged.
If you are starting to encounter teen rebellion pray boldly in the name of Jesus against a rebellious spirit, treat it like spiritual warfare, YOU are interceding on behalf of your child.
In an earlier blog post, I wrote about using scripture to pray for our teenagers, go ahead and read that if you need a few examples.
Hebrews 4:12 says “the word of God is living and active” so that tells us god’s word is powerful and supernatural, It carries the full weight of God Almighty! He is our present help.
Bible Verses For Rebellious Teenager/Prayers To Break A Spirit Of Rebellion
God’s word is filled with wisdom and guidance, hope and peace.
Use these bible verses as prayers for your child.
Add your son or daughter’s name to each verse and put your trust and hope on the power of the holy spirit to work through your child’s life.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts….Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish….and whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. -Colossians 3:15-17
Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. -2 Timothy 2:22
My son, preserve sound judgement and discernment, do not let them out of your sight, they will be life for you….Then you will go on your way in safety, and your foot will not stumble. -Proverbs 3:21-23
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother – which is the first commandment with a promise- that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.
Fathers, do not exasperate your children: instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.
Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions…
Parents of Teens Short Prayer Examples Using Bible Verses
Continue to work in _________ to will and to act according to your purpose.
May _________Set their mind on things above, not on earthly things.
In Jesus name
Let _________ live carefully and wisely, making the most of every opportunity and understanding what your will is.
In Jesus’ name, amen
There are too many verses to write them all. The Bible is the BEST resource for us parents when we have broken hearts over the lives of others epecifically our children. Immerse yourself in the word of God and pray!
Important Thing To Remember When Raising A Rebellious Teenager
Your son or daughter loves you! Don’t give up on them no matter how difficult this season of raising them might be. Find the root cause for their behavior, do some sleuthing around and pray your heart out.
If you would like an additional resource, the book The New Strong Willed Child by Dr. James Dobson has been of great help to me and it might be to you as well. It’s full of real life stories, research and how-tos on raising strong willed rebellious children.