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Children are hungry

I’m sure you are well aware of this, and perhaps you’re already looking forward to your teenager’s appetite being satisfied for more than an hour this Thanksgiving. I’m certain that if I counted how many times my three children said “I’m hungry” in a single day, the total would be well into the double digits. The persistent request for snacks has become a joke among parents on social media and although it can be comical at times, this dance between parent and child can also reflect a deeper truth.

Children are hungry.

Hungry for acceptance

Hungry for stability

Hungry for unconditional love

Hungry for encouragement

Hungry for guidance

Hungry for safety

Hungry for recognition

Hungry for hope

Paul Tripp describes these hunger pangs beautifully. He writes, “Our deepest hungers are not physical; they are deeply spiritual. Our hearts growl with hunger for what was meant to be, for how the world was designed to be, for what we were created to be, for rescue from what was not meant to be.”

As you approach this holiday season, consider what your teenager is deeply hungry for. The break from school responsibilities and change in your family's routine could provide an excellent opportunity to intentionally check-in on your teen’s mental, emotional, and relational well-being. While you talk, ask how you can personally help them where they are struggling or brainstorm life-giving ways that they can move toward health.

Remember that you don’t need to have a solution to every hunger of your child’s heart. The longing of their souls can only be fully satisfied by the God who “satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things.” (Psalm 107:9) He will never tire of hearing “I’m hungry” from his children, and is willing and able to meet every need.

Janelle Kelly

Project BestLife Specialist


Healthy conversations with your teen: 


Blog Goal:The Talk With Your Teen blog encourages and equips Christian parents to have consistent, open, and meaningful conversations with their teenagers about relational and sexual health.


About us: This blog is hosted by The Joshua Center from Positive Options. The Joshua Center exists to mobilize the body of Christ to embody the Gospel as we build a culture of life in West Michigan.


Parenting teens can be challenging. We offer Biblically based social and sexual health workshops that help ground teens in God's truth and authority as they navigate a hypersexual and rapidly evolving culture focused on individualism and self-gratification. Talk with your Teen articles expand and build on these trainings by encouraging and equipping Christian parents to have ongoing conversations with their teens regarding sensitive cultural issues. For more information about our workshops, for both teens and their parents, please email

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