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For many teenagers significant relationships are in short supply.

In an age where we’ve never been more connected (thanks to technology), isolation and loneliness still characterize the lives of so many teenagers.

We’re assuming that you’re involved in youth ministry because you’ve been significantly influenced by another Christian. As youth workers, we know the power of great friendships, which is why we work so hard to disciple teenagers and challenge them to deeper ways—which includes deeper friendships. Both of us lead a small group of teenagers, and we’re committed to teaching our guys how to enhance their relationships.

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GET GROUP MAG for DIRT CHEAP!
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This week, we are going to explore some ideas to help students build relationships in with both their friends and within their own families. Today and tomorrow we’ll present four principles that you can personalize and put into your own youth-friendly language and then teach these to teenagers. They are looking for stronger friendships and you can help them.

1. BE INTERESTED IN A DEEPER CONNECTION
Genuine interest in other people builds community. Our natural tendency is to look inward, but selfishness only breeds more isolation. Everyone loves it when they have an “audience” who wants to hear the details of their life. The simple skill of asking good questions can lead to deeper connections (and this skill can be learned). This becomes easier when we set aside our own agendas and seek to care for others.

2. TALK ABOUT STUFF THAT MATTERS
The strength of a friendship is built on the depth of its dialog. It’s easy to make conversation and stay on the surface. Instead, care more about the relationship and engage in conversation that will make a difference. This pursuit of depth will catch some off guard because we’re conditioned to play it safe and talk about trivial things. It’s time to get out of the shallow end of the pool and risk swimming in the deep end. Relationships are made rich when they’ve gone to the place of where things matter. Risk together, share fears, celebration one another and help each other with personal struggles.

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GET GROUP MAG for DIRT CHEAP!
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Tomorrow we’ll hit up two more principles to help you teach your students to build deeper connections with one another.
 

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