What to Expect of a 12 Year Old

What to Expect of a Twelve-Year Old” is a CD that each of our children have chosen to listen to over and over and over when they get to be around 10 and 11 years old. I was surprised when our oldest began to listen to it  and as I sit here typing, Matthew (11) is listening.


Our children want to do great things for Christ and this CD has been a tool that has inspired our children to increased initiative, responsibility and maturity. It gives pre-teens (and their parents) a vision for what young people before them have done.


The young teen age years need not be a time when those around are catering to the teen’s desires and perceived ‘needs’ or toting them here and there for activities and events. Many teen activities are self-serving, while being labeled as valuable or necessary for learning or character building. Rather by 12 years of age the majority of the child’s training and preparation should be completed and these young adults should be able to learn, not through ‘activities’ or ‘amusements’, but while actively and productively serving their family, the church and the community.


We still have a long way to go and a lot to work on, but “What to Expect of a Twelve-Year Old” has given our children (and us) a vision for the potential and productivity of the teen years.

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9 Responses to What to Expect of a 12 Year Old
  1. Gabe
    February 16, 2011 | 9:23 am

    We loved listening to that one too! Ours are still all under 12 (oldest is 10). It helped us so much, and our kids enjoyed listening to it also! Hmmm…. I should bring that one out again. Thanks for the great post (again)!

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  2. Dawn@OneFaithfulMom
    February 16, 2011 | 1:20 pm

    I have listened to this CD so many times!! Every time I have a child approaching the age of 12, I listen to it again. It never occurred to me to have the child listen!!
    Thanks!!

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  3. Sharon
    February 16, 2011 | 1:34 pm

    I think this is a great message from Mr. Davis as well. Just wanted to share for your readers who may not be able to purchase the message that it is available for free online:

    http://www.biblepreaching.com/davistwelve_mp3.html

    Hope that is ok.

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    JennyB Reply:

    Thank you, Sharon, for sharing the link!

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  4. Ruth
    February 16, 2011 | 3:58 pm

    Sounds good! Thanks for sharing about it.

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  5. Heather
    February 16, 2011 | 4:56 pm

    Hi Kimberly:) I haven’t commented in forever, it seems:( but, I do read! Glad you are all well and I will check this out. I really have trouble passing everything onto my stepchildren. My own kids I can communicate with so well–but still, not so much my stepkids, especially my 15 year old stepdaughter. I worry about how to phrase things so everything I say is not taken as a critique, but rather helpful. oh well, everything happens for a reason, right? {deep sigh}

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  6. Amy @ Raising Arrows
    February 17, 2011 | 11:45 pm

    This is one of our favorite SM Davis sermons! I first listened to it when our oldest was 8 and I JUST listened to is again the other day! What a coincidence!

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  7. Janine
    February 20, 2011 | 5:34 pm

    Since I tote myself to activities and events that I enjoy, I am happy to do so for my 12-year old. That’s my thoughts on this subject. I find that busy moms often want to stop parenting when kids reach the teenage years, simply because they have so many littles around. They use excuse that at 12, their child is done.

    Thanks for the informative post.

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    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Hi Janine,

    Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment.

    We also tote ourselves and our children around, but the goal is not enjoyment or amusement (although we generally find great joy in serving others) our purpose is to glorify God and work toward the furtherance of His kingdom.

    Just this past week I spent time toting my young teen girls to a friend’s who has two young children and a newborn. The girls spent their time helping with the babies and doing some basic household tasks.

    It’s merely a matter of focus. We wish for our children to be involved in serving God and others rather than on spending their time serving self and being amused. (For more thoughts on how Christians should spend their time read Musing on A-Musing.)

    I’m not recommending that parents stop parenting during the teen years, rather I’m advocating that parents reject the current notion of allowing sports, activities and recreational time with friends to parent their children for them.

    Interestingly, what I’m advocating requires much more parenting than the common practices of today. Most young teens are at school all day, busy with after school activities, work on homework assignments and do not sit down to a family meal. We spend our day educating and ‘parenting’ our children, we work together on projects during the afternoon and sit down together for a family meal each evening after which we have a time of worship together. We are still very active in parenting our teens and pre-teens, but our relationship has changed and they have become our allies in the work of God’s kingdom. It is a tremendous joy and blessing.

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