In The Soul of Adolescence, Lyons quotes the words of an adolescent who has just made the move from Elementary School to help us understand where young people are:
I don't ever remember feeling limited in grade school. You could join everything then. But now . . . no deal. Everywhere I turn, I get shut out, not picked, not cast, and not even called to hang out! I had do idea how few things I'm ok enough to do. (Lyons 2010, 29)
We know that the transition from elementary to middle and high school is challenging as young people face a new reality that in some ways is more reflective of the wider world. They move from a more nurturing, protective setting to one that is much open. However, hearing it "in their own words" can give us a deeper, more urgent awareness of the cost of this transition as we sense the underlying frustration and inadequacy bordering on hopelessness. As we listen in love, can we pray for wisdom to help our students in this transition as they journey in their new environment?
How well do you hear the words of your middle and high school students in their sojourn? How is God calling you to journey with them?
Loving God, Loving Neighbor