What It's Like to Be 16

Don't let yourself forget what it's like to be sixteen.

"Don't let yourself forget what it's like to be sixteen."—Anonymous

In a couple of weeks I'll be heading to my 20-year high school reunion. As I've prepared for this—schedule-wise, financially, and emotionally (especially emotionally!)—I've reflected on what it was like to be 16 often in the last few weeks.

I turn my radio up REAL LOUD every time Rod Stewart's song comes on in the car; "I wish that I knew what I now … when I was younger." (I wonder what kind of look I'd get if one of the older members of our congregation would pull up alongside my van as it vibrates from the music as I sing along and beat my steering wheel like a drum.)

Sixteen was a great time in my life, although it was a very awkward time too. I had some great friends, but I also had some enemies. I had girlfriends, but I felt so clumsy on dates. I did good in school, but almost failed German … three times. I wish I could go back and relive those times—and do a few things a little differently—but, then again, I don't know if I'd want to go through that again.

Oh, and one more thing: I was religious, but I didn't have a saving relationship with Christ. (I worked a lot of Sunday mornings, so I went to church on Sunday evenings, instead. At least that's what I told my parents. I'd dress up for church, and then I'd leave and go to the gym, change my clothes, and play basketball for the next couple hours.)

Yes, I wish that I knew Who I know now, when I was younger. I wish somebody had grabbed hold of me and took me to a small group where I could see Christ's love in action. If that would have happened I would have avoided a lot of pain during my college years!

This month's issue deals with small groups for youth. ...

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