Practical Advice for my Daughter - Part1
Being cool is overrated. Growing up and throughout adulthood you will be faced with peer pressure. That doesn't mean that it will seem like a negative thing, in fact, you may enjoy it. Peer pressure is something that is never going away, so it is better to deal with it as soon as possible.
Many people start drinking, smoking, doing drugs, and having sex because of peer pressure. The excitement of these activities will eventually grow dull and their wake will be left a trail of destruction and missed opportunities.
Drinking is given way too much hype. When most of your conversations are about how much you drank and what happened when you drank, you can be sure you are wasting your life. Many nights and many mornings are wasted because of drinking and it is really not that fun. Going for a hike, playing a sport, reading a book, talking to friends, getting a good night sleep are all more fun than drinking. There is a reason that most people look back at their childhood with fondness, it reminds them of when they really enjoyed life by playing games, having friends, and learning.
Smoking is stupid. It is a gross habit that should never be tried and makes a mess of your life both literally and figuratively. A trail of cigarette butts and the smell of smoking will follow your every step. Not only will it take years off your life, it will also take away enjoyment from your life. Being out of breath because of cigarettes is not the same as the breath taking enjoyment of God.
Drugs are dangerous. The definition of what is a drug will undoubtedly change in your lifetime. In any case, avoid anything that affects your mind. Learning is one of the greatest joys in life, whether it is learning to play a sport, learning about people, or learning about the universe. You only have one brain and once that is ruined your ability to learn will be diminished or perhaps ruined. Don't forget that the greatest joy of learning is learning about God and His Son Jesus Christ. The reality of knowing God is far more exciting and rewarding then any of the mind-bending hallucinations of any drug.
Sexual activity is only for marriage and produces kids. Kissing is the gateway to sexual activity. There is something you need to understand about boys. Young men's brains are not fully developed and they have a hard time thinking when there is no blood in their head. No matter how well intentioned they seem they cannot be trusted. In fact, they probably don't even trust themselves. There is another thing you need to understand about girls. Young women crave attention and often use their bodies to get it, especially if they are beautiful. But, the attention they are going to get is not what they really want.
God knows the weaknesses of mankind and has provided a way to navigate the world of sexual activity. Unfortunately, sometimes we think know better than God and try things are own way. Guys need to be mature and responsible enough to ask the girl to marry him and provide and protect her as long as he lives. This method helps the guy think with his head instead of his head. Girls need to be willing to bear children with this guy. The connection between sex and children may not be clear anymore, but it is God's natural design. This method helps the girl evaluate the kind of attention she is getting and the type of person who is showing it. Spending your life with someone is a big deal and you need to have some evidence that the person you are going to be with is a man of their word. You will never know as much as you would like to know about marrying someone, but if you know they are man of their word it goes a long way.
Your body is the one gift that you can give your spouse that nobody else can. Save it for him! There will be a lot of pressure to treat sex as worthless like everybody else, but it is them that are missing out. Even prostitutes and porn stars understand that sex has value, though it is the wrong kind of value. Sex unites two people in body and soul and creates a relationship of priceless worth, which is destroyed when it is shared with anybody outside those two people. Those who make sex common (i.e. worthless) will never enjoy the depth of relationship, trust, and commitment of those who don't. Unfortunately, they don't know what they are missing.
These are the major areas where you will probably feel the most peer pressure in your teenage years. If you avoid these temptations you will be doing well. However, resisting temptation is not the same thing as desiring to know God.