Relationships grow one small interaction at a time.

But the depth of a relationship multiplies in certain key moments. A youth minister that has a desire to grow relationships with Parents of Teenagers would be smart to recognize those moments.

Here are 3 “Carpe Diem” Moments to Look for in the Lives of Parents where you can Earn their Trust

Triumph- Just about every parent thinks their teenager is pretty amazing. But when someone else notices that their teenager is special it goes a long way to encourage them. Find small but significant ways to recognize the achievements of your teenagers. When they win a big game, make a the dean’s list, or simply overcome a struggle make sure to be a cheerleader to both the student and their parents.

Transition- Change is hard. When families go through major change it is a great time to build relationship with them. Take time to notice if a student’s older sibling moved off to college, if a student changed schools, or if something occured in the life of a family that is a big deal to them. One great relationship to build is with the local real estate agents in town. They are constantly working with folks in transition. There might be a great opportunity for you to partner with them to help families in your community who are experiencing major change.

Tragedy- Sickness, Death, and Divorce are realities that families with teenagers sometimes face. There is nothing more important than making time for families who are hurting. Show up during a tragedy, and you will build trust with teenagers and their parents.

90% of ministry is just showing up and being available. Keep your eyes open and be ready to seize the moments that open the door for a deep and meaningful connection to the families you serve.

Shellie Hochstetler encourages parents of teenagers daily at and She has survived raising 4 teenagers and in her own words, “they are extremely awesome”. She describes parenting as “terrifying but fulfilling, lonely while extremely loud, and completely exhausting while in the same breathe exhilarating!” Shellie lives in her dream home in Nashville, TN with her husband, kids, a horse, and some chickens.