At school, I sometimes hear parents say something like: “This is that age. We just hope they just survive.” This attitude is part of the problem, if not the source itself. Parents who look at their teens as strange monsters, or hormone-overloaded animals, have decided years ago to lose the battle. If you adopt this attitude, then every age is an age to “just survive”. We “just survive” pouring ourselves into our infants at all hours. We “just survive” the energetic whirlwind mis-named the “terrible twos”. We fail to take every God-ordained stage of development and channel it in the proper way. Energy is a good thing, and the glory of young men is their strength. But a powerful river flows in a specific channel. That channel should have been carved out by the parents when the child was still in the 3rd grade. The teen years should not be a time of “just surviving”; it should be a time of thriving, of tremendous growth and a flowering of righteousness. But, this can only happen if there are deep roots, grounded in parental love and shepherding.