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      Nurturing people in the image of God since 1868.                                                                          POB 397/520 Dry Creek Rd./Smithville, TN



The apostle Paul wrote many years ago that he lived in a crooked and perverse generation (Phil. 2:15), and things haven't changed much since then. If you read Romans 1:26-32, you would realize that those verses could very well be the headlines of today's paper. I am especially aware of the impact the world has on teenagers. Teenagers NEED Christ! Nothing is held back from teens in our world. In our days as a teen sin was kept pretty much in the closet. But, now, it is as wide open and flagrant as it can be. Pornography, homosexuality, prostitution, alcohol, drugs, and every other vice is available to them. To give you an idea of how this crooked and perverse generation has affected our teens, consider the following statistics:

**Every 78 seconds a teenager attempts suicide in the U.S., and every 90 seconds one succeeds.
**Every 80 minutes a teenager is murdered.
**Every 31 seconds a teenage girl becomes pregnant.
**Last year there were over one million teen abortions.
**Over 80% of all teens raised in the church will fall away.

To me, those statistics are frightening.  And there's more to be found. My reaction to all this is that Teenagers NEED Christ! They need to know there is a better way to live. They need to know there is a Savior who cares for them. They need the open arms of a church family united by a cross. Here are some reasons why teenagers need Christ:

    1. TEENAGERS NEED CHRIST for direction in life (Luke 9:23). Jesus demands commitment to Him. He gives purpose and meaning to life. He gives us a heavenly goal and an earthly path.

    2. TEENAGERS NEED CHRIST for acceptance (John 8:1-10). This means that no matter who you are, what you look like, what others think of you or what sins your past may hold — Jesus says you can be one of God's children. He sees the good in the worst of people. He will accept you!

    3. TEENAGERS NEED CHRIST because they need the church (Heb. 10:26). They need a group of people to associate with, love and be loved. They need encouragement and positive influence. The church should fulfill this need.

    4. TEENAGERS NEED CHRIST because the Christian lifestyle is ultimately the only productive lifestyle. The life which leads to heaven is the only life that can be led that has eternal benefits. What we all want most is happiness and security. The Christian lifestyle is the only one that offers true security and lasting happiness.

Thank God for our Christian teenagers! They are showing their friends and their world that being a Christian is important. TEENAGERS NEED CHRIST!

For His Cause,
Tim Woodward