“Our beloved young men and women, we have great confidence in you. You are choice spirits who have come forth in this day when the responsibilities and opportunities, as well as the temptations, are the greatest. … Your Heavenly Father wants your life to be joyful and to lead you back into His presence. The decisions you make now will determine much of what will follow during your life and throughout eternity” (For the Strength of Youth).

Mormon TeensSeveral years ago the leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, also known by the nickname Mormon Church, put together a special booklet for the Young Men and Young Women (age 12-17) to help guide them during the formative years of their lives.

Consider for a moment the Ten Commandments. Through them we have been taught gospel principles such as loving the Lord, not to steal, not to covet, and to honor our mothers and our fathers. These simple statements were given to help guide the Lord’s people in their lives. They were meant to help them find more happiness.

Yet these commandments were not enough. When the Lord began His ministry, He taught a higher law. Not only were we not to kill, but we shouldn’t even be brought to such anger. The people at that particular time were ready for a higher law. These laws, or new commandments, were taught in order to help bring the people to a higher state of happiness.

There are aspects of our lives today that are much the same as what existed at the time of Christ, and even at the time of Moses. People still love, laugh, and grow. They still hate, make mistakes, and sin. As time continues, and as we learn these higher laws, Satan must refine his own tactics to sway us away from the Lord’s side. To help strengthen us against these new devices, the Lord has given His leaders of today more guidelines.

Have you ever noticed how much teens and children are now both being targeted in the media, especially when it comes to attacking basic morals and values? If Satan can get to us early, he can maintain an unbelievably strong hold over us as we grow older. Concepts that were once taught faithfully in the homes are now taunted, being called old and outdated. Values are made to seem archaic and no longer necessary. Morals only keep us from truly enjoying ourselves, a sort of spiritual prison if you will.

Yet the Lord would have us know a better way, a better life. It is because He loves us so much that He creates these commandments and guidelines. They will aid in keeping us from the paths that will only lead to misery, addiction, even death. He has prophets today who continue to lead and teach us, so that even in our modern days we can still be protected.

“We promise that as you keep these standards and live by the truths in the scriptures, you will be able to do your life’s work with greater wisdom and skill and bear trials with greater courage. You will have the help of the Holy Ghost. You will feel good about yourself and will be a positive influence in the lives of others” (For the Strength of Youth).

The Lord knows what mighty leaders exist in the youth today. He knows what extraordinary gifts they hold, how much power for good they possess. Through revelation to His prophet He has provided a booklet titled ‘ These areas range from gratitude and honesty, to dating and friends.

Over the next several weeks I hope to cover many of these areas. While those who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are blessed to have these teachings, there are too many out there who do not. It is my sincere hope that these concepts will help strengthen many other youth out there.

I have such a testimony of how truly precious teens are, of how strong their spirits are, and of how much harder they are being tried, tested, and tempted as compared to when I was a teen barely fifteen years ago. I also know that if there’s anything that they or parents can find to help keep them on the path to happiness it’s worth exploring, no matter what religion you may practice.

About Laurie W

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