for teens

The difference between ignorance and innocence

When I was a student at grammar school in England (similar to high school in the United States), a lot of my friends started going to nightclubs even though they were too young to do so legally. Some of them would boast about the guys they met and about their subsequent physical relationships. I knew it was wrong for me to go to clubs, because I was underage, too, but sometimes I felt pressured and inadequate because I wasn't in on all their supposedly adult experiences. My friends told me that I was missing out on an important stage of growing up. I really had to stand my ground in the face of their allegations.

I was, however, learning other lessons that were much more important. At the Sunday School I attended every week, I was gaining a sense of my true identity. In the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health, I read, "Children should be allowed to remain children in knowledge, and should become men and women only through growth in the understanding of man's higher nature" (p. 62). At first I thought that meant I should remain ignorant or naive, but that isn't the case. I learned that since I am the child of God, made in His perfect image, I have unlimited access to everything that I need. God's goodness is infinite, and I have my being within it. Therefore, I could turn directly to God for guidance and joy.

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