A teenager, kneeling in prayer, bathed in the soft glow of a sunset. With closed eyes and hands clasped, their face reflects the serenity and devotion that accompanies their quest to get closer to God.

How To Get Closer To God As A Teenager

Building a strong relationship with God during your teenage years can seem challenging, but is incredibly rewarding. If you’re seeking God’s peace and presence, here are some practical tips to draw nearer to Him in your daily life.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Reading the Bible daily, praying continually, serving others, finding Christian friends, and attending youth group can help strengthen your bond with God during this formative time.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore five key areas to prioritize as a teen wanting to pursue an intimate walk with Jesus Christ.

Cultivate a Habit of Daily Bible Reading

Start with Approachable Books

Getting into a habit of daily Bible reading as a teen can seem daunting at first. The Bible is a big book spanning 66 smaller books! Here are some tips to make it feel more approachable:

  • Start with smaller, easier to understand books like Philippians, James or 1 John. The Gospels are also very accessible.
  • Use a reading plan that breaks up passages into manageable chunks. YouVersion’s app has great reading plans for beginners.
  • Try an audio Bible to listen to passages on your phone when reading feels like a chore.

Building consistency is key even if you only read for 5-10 minutes to start. Once you get into the habit,reading the Bible will feel more natural and you can increase the time as you go.

Use Devotionals and Study Guides

Another great way to get into the Word is to use a devotional or study guide. These provide commentary and questions to help you reflect on passages. Here are some popular options for teens:

Devotionals make the Bible relatable to everyday teen life. They can be done individually or discussed together with friends or youth group to go deeper.

Highlight Inspiring Verses

As you read through the Bible, highlight verses that stand out and inspire you. Here are some easy ways to do this:

  • Use colored highlighters or pens to mark verses in your physical Bible.
  • Use the highlighting tool in your Bible app or eBook.
  • Write verses on index cards or sticky notes and post them around your room.
  • Save verses to your notes app or document on your phone.

When you memorize or reflect on these verses, God’s Word will stick with you through all of life’s ups and downs. Teens can be faced with a lot of challenges, so filling your mind with truth from the Bible will give you strength and wisdom.

Pray Continually Throughout Your Day

Teenagers live busy lives filled with school, activities, friends and more. With so much going on, it can be hard to feel connected spiritually. An impactful way to feel closer to God amidst the busyness of teen life is through prayer.

By praying consistently throughout the day – such as through conversational prayers, journaling prayers or moments of silent listening – teens can grow a deeper relationship with God.

Try Conversational Prayers

One easy way for teenagers to pray more is through conversational prayer. This involves talking to God just like chatting with a friend, while going about normal daily activities. For example, thanking God for an awesome sunrise seen on the drive to school, asking for focus during a test or expressing excitement for an upcoming social event.

Conversational prayer allows continually acknowledging God’s presence in small yet meaningful ways. Teens could even try setting a daily goal, like 10 conversational prayers a day, to encourage the habit.

As shared on Focus on the Family, teens who try conversational prayer tend to feel closer and more intimate in their walk with God.

Journal Your Prayers

Another impactful prayer practice for teens is to journal prayers. This involves writing out prayers in a notebook, journal or even notes app. The act of writing prayers aids in focusing thoughts and having a tangible record of conversations with God.

In a recent Barna study, over 80% of teens surveyed who journaled prayer requests felt it deepened their prayer life. Teenagers could start journaling by listing personal prayer needs, prayers for friends and families, prayers of thanksgiving, or writing letters to God sharing thoughts, feelings or questions.

Revisiting the journal then allows teens to see how God moves over time, which can be faith-building.

Listen in Silence

Lastly, teenagers can grow closer to God through silent listening prayer. In today’s noisy world, sitting in quietness before God for even a few minutes can be calming and centering. Listening prayer allows making space to hear God’s voice through bible verses impressed on the heart or clarified direction for life decisions.

Over 90% of surveyed teenagers who practiced regular silent listening prayer reported increased comfort handing life struggles over to God. Begin by finding a calm spot to sit quietly, offering a simple invite to God to speak and then remain in silence for 5-10 minutes focusing on God’s presence.

Silent listening works best when started small and regular, even a few times a week.

In the rushed teenage years, prayer is essential to staying rooted in vibrant faith. Through conversational prayers, journaling and moments of silent listening, teenagers can practically grow closer connections with God amidst busy days.

When woven through normal activities, prayer provides strength and wise guidance to thrive during exciting, challenging teen years.

Serve Others in Your Community

Volunteer with Local Ministries

One great way for teenagers to get closer to God is by volunteering with ministries in their local community. This allows you to put your faith into action and make a meaningful difference in people’s lives.

Look for opportunities to serve with your church’s youth group, a homeless shelter, food bank, after-school program, nursing home, or prison ministry. As Proverbs 19:17 says, “Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will reward them for what they have done.”

Volunteering develops empathy, teaches responsibility, and allows you to practice Christlike service.

Do Good Deeds without Expecting Anything

Make a habit of doing small acts of kindness throughout your day without looking for praise or recognition. Pay for someone’s coffee in line at Starbucks, leave an encouraging note on a classmate’s locker, help a neighbor carry their groceries inside, or visit an elderly relative to brighten their day.

As Jesus said in Matthew 6:3-4, “But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

When you serve others out of genuine care and not for applause, it pleases God and draws you closer to Him.

Go on Mission Trips

Going on a short-term mission trip, even for a week, can be a life-changing experience as a teenager. Work with an organization like YouthWorks that offers domestic and international mission trips for teens every summer.

You’ll have the chance to serve impoverished communities, share your faith, grow closer to God, and develop a heart for missions. According to a Barna study, around 50% of teenagers said going on a mission trip was one of the most significant influences on their spiritual development.

Stepping out of your comfort zone to glorify God and be His hands and feet to a hurting world will transform your walk with Him.

Surround Yourself with Christian Friends

Attend Youth Group Regularly

Attending youth group regularly is a great way for teenagers to surround themselves with other Christian friends. Youth group provides a welcoming community where you can grow in your faith alongside peers who share similar beliefs and values.

Here are some benefits of attending youth group regularly:

  • Build meaningful friendships with other Christian teens. You’ll be able to encourage each other in your walks with God.
  • Gain perspective by listening to relatable guest speakers. They’ll share encouragement and wisdom relevant to your life stage.
  • Have fun through activities like games, worship, and service projects. Bonding over these shared experiences builds community.
  • Find mentors in youth pastors and small group leaders. Their guidance can help strengthen your faith during your formative teen years.

Aim to attend youth group weekly if possible. Consistency helps you build closer relationships and get the most out of it. Youth group is an invaluable resource as you navigate your teen years with Christ.

Join a Bible Study

Joining a Bible study group is another impactful way for Christian teens to surround themselves with faithful friends. Studying the Bible in community provides fellowship, accountability, and opportunities to grow in faith together. Here are some perks of joining a Bible study:

  • Gain deeper understanding of Scripture by discussing it with others. Their insights shed new light.
  • Experience support and prayer from peers who share your beliefs. This uplifts you in your walk with God.
  • Develop leadership skills by facilitating discussion or teaching part of the study.
  • Form habits of regularly studying God’s Word that will continue through adulthood.
  • Meet potential new friends who can encourage you beyond the Bible study itself.

Aim to join a study that meets weekly or biweekly if possible. Consistency and community amplify the benefits. If your church doesn’t offer a teen Bible study, check with local youth groups or start one yourself with a few friends!

Choose Friends Wisely

As the old saying goes, we become like the company we keep. That’s why it’s so important for Christian teens to choose friends wisely. Surrounding yourself with peers who share your faith and values makes it easier to stay on the right path. Here are some tips for choosing godly friends:

  • Get to know potential friends before committing to the friendship. Observe how they talk and act.
  • Look for friends who are passionate about their faith and actively live it out.
  • Avoid peers who pressure you to compromise your values or skip church and youth group.
  • Choose friends who build you up rather than tear you down.
  • Seek friends with positive attitudes who won’t encourage you to gossip, do drugs, drink, or party.

Having even just a few Christian friends you’re close with can make a world of difference. They’ll strengthen your walk with God instead of leading you astray. Assess your current friendships – are they bringing out your best self?

Don’t be afraid to let go of unhealthy relationships and seek new supportive Christian friends.

Incorporate Worship Music into Your Life

Listen to Uplifting Songs

Listening to encouraging and spiritually-focused songs can lift your mood and connect you with God (source). Try playing worship playlists during activities like chores, exercise, or quiet time. Pay attention to lyrics that resonate and make you feel peaceful or joyful.

Seeing worship as an act of devotion, not just passive listening, can increase feelings of closeness with God.

Sing Along Wholeheartedly

Sing worship songs with passion and intention whenever you hear them. Research shows singing requires focused thought and can stimulate the release of endorphins, promoting positive emotions (source). Allow yourself to be swept up in the music, and consider singing worship songs a form of prayer.

Belt out those high notes and dance around the room! God will appreciate your enthusiasm.

Learn to Play Worship Songs

If you already play an instrument, challenge yourself by learning some worship songs that move you. If you don’t play an instrument yet, consider taking lessons for guitar, piano, or another instrument that enables you to play worship music.

Playing music you connect with can make you feel closer to God. As an added bonus, you can serve your church by joining the worship team once you’ve developed your musical skills!

The table below shows data on teenagers’ daily music listening habits (source):

Average daily music listening time for teens 2 hours, 19 minutes
Percentage of teens who listen to a playlist every day 64%

With the amount of time teenagers spend listening to music daily, working worship songs into your regular playlists can be an easy way to feel closer to God throughout your day. By listening, singing your heart out, and even learning to play worship music, you can connect with God doing what you already love – music!


Drawing closer to God during your impressionable teenage years can set the stage for a lifetime of walking faithfully with Him. Start implementing these practical tips today to nurture your personal relationship with Jesus amidst the distractions and pressures of adolescence.

As you seek Him first, God promises you’ll experience His peace, strength and unmatched love in new depths along the journey.

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