Human beings are very intricate pieces of work and teenagers are a certain category of human beings which are made up of ‘many intricate moods’. They construct themselves and the people around them according to their moods and fancies. They do this even with the Bible, and mark my words….the Bible is a teenage soul’s paradise. On this occasion, of ‘Bible Sunday’, I thought it appropriate to look into the complex moods within the framework of the ‘Word of God’.
The Bible has got a way to absorb within itself, the state of mind of a troubled or absolutely absurd teen. The Bible says it all ….. It speaks about friendship in the Book of Samuel- the friendship between David and King Saul’s son, Jonathan. It speaks about relationships like the complex love story of Hosea in The Book of Hosea, the eternal story of Samson and Delilah in the Book of Judges and the love of Jesus for all of us in the Gospel of John. It also speaks about patriotism, affections, radicalism, rebelliousness and freedom of expression.
The Bible also touches the teenager’s heart when the story of Job is being read at Church. Many teens find themselves at times asking their parents, priests and peers the same questions raised in The Book Of Job:
(1) Why am I suffering?
(2) Where is God when I need him?
(3) Why can’t I just ‘die’?
Same questions…..same reactions….then and now!
In Esther, Judith and Ruth a teenage girl finds the fortitude to stand up for what she feels is right. (Whether society agrees or not, which it often doesn’t) whereas in Joshua, David and Abraham -a teenage boy finds a person they can relate to men who were challenged at such a young age to make a difference in society…in the world ….. and ….. to build on their faith.
King David teaches us repentance for our weaknesses (this includes pornography!) and failings and God’s unconditional and inexhaustible love to counteract it. The story of Samuel could be the story of a young Catholic’s early call into a vocation or the story of Saint Paul for that matter in the Acts of the Apostles. The Books Of Maccabees teaches us about how at times following the right values inculcated in us may cost us a lot, at times our lives…but its worth it….each and every time, especially if we know we are doing it for the truth, just the way our Lord Jesus did on the Cross or Saint Stephen in the Acts of the Apostles.
The Book of Wisdom teaches a teen to be practical and God fearing at the same time and the ‘Song of Songs’ brings out the Spice of Life (romance of course). Yes….the Bible comes in various shades, sizes and copies but, it’s the story within the story that elicits in us a joy unimaginable. It’s the story of a searching soul and moreover, the soul of a teenager with his or her moods, dreams and aspirations.