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My friends and I are often hitting and smacking each other because that’s what teenage boys do. Every once in a while, I worry that this causes more pain for The Savior when he suffered for ALL our pains and afflictions. I want to know if we should stop or not, I don’t want to cause more pain for Christ than he already has gone through. Help me please!





Dear Joey,

This may be difficult to believe, but I was young once. And like most young people, I did some foolish things. Not that those things were sinful per se, but they were just goofball things that I needed to outgrow. For the most part they were harmless, as they were more or less cultural norms for someone my age. In time I matured and outgrew them. I think what you are experiencing is this maturity where the things that you used to see as “normal” are starting to seem juvenile and unproductive.

The truth about men


Paul describes this experience thusly:

“When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” (1 Cor. 13:11)

By the way, do you know what the definition of “stripling” is? It’s a young man preparing for adulthood. Both Helaman’s warriors and young David are described as stripling. They went through the awkward transition common to men (properly called).




Without getting into a theological discussion on the mechanics of the Atonement (more like the mystery of the Atonement!), I commend you for recognizing the discomfort maturity can bring and encourage you to heed the call of growth. Respect yourself and live your standards. Be a modern David and others will ask “whose son the stripling is”; be a modern Ammonite, living up to the teachings of you mother and father with dignity.






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