Relationships are the heart of God, Himself. Picture for a moment that your child is engaged in the battle of his life. He stands on the open field with arrows and swords seeking to take from him all that he has, even his very life. What has he to defend himself with? God gave you, the parents, the tools he needs to get out of this surge, successfully and in tact. God has given you His Word, the Master Instruction Manual, the Play-by-Play to maneuver Satan’s attempts on our earthly lives. Are we simply holding it in our hands on Sunday mornings or have we read it through and inwardly digested it all in order to set our frame of mind on God’s intentions for defeat? Everywhere we go and everything we do requires us to be in relationship with other people around us. When we understand the mentality of God as He has created us to relate with one another, our lives will be changed. And as we take that mentality and teach it to our children, so it will be done in their lives as well. Sex is a powerful thing whether used for good or for evil; we can’t afford to not give it the respect it deserves and here are the top ten reasons why:
Top Ten Reasons You Need To Talk to Your Kids About Sex, Now.
#10. You’re the only one NOT talking to them.
Even if we keep our kids close, we are all still being bombarded by a casual sex culture. In the same way that Hitler and the Nazi regime convinced an entire country that Jews were a threat to humanity through biased propaganda during WWII, sexual propaganda has been brainwashing families of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries as well. There are agencies that have been targeting specific demographics, focusing on race, age, gender, religion, salary, and more, for the better part of ninety years. For nearly a century, there have been people whose only job, forty-plus hours a week, has been to study the public and feed us what their clients want us to know in the way we are most likely to receive it. And what sells their products? Sex. But as is true of all negative propaganda, what began as the desire to sell a product, has become a frame of mind that has infiltrated the public’s ability to make sound decisions and think clearly about the things that matter most.
#9. Your voice will always be the loudest one they hear.
. . . especially when we say nothing at all, unfortunately. I can tell my daughter all day long not to smoke cigarettes. But if she sees me smoking cigarettes, I have now, albeit unintentionally, instructed her in this area of her life as she’s growing up and trying to figure out what kind of adult she will be. Your children have been looking up to you and trying to be like you since the first moment they laid eyes on you. It wasn’t by coincidence that God gave you the amazing kids you have in your care and vice versa! You are equipped, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, to connect and communicate with your kids better than anyone else in this world. And what’s even better yet? They will listen to you. Never cease seeking out the knowledge you need in order to instruct your children well.
#8. They don’t know. (God’s thoughts on sex.)
Heck, how many of us adults really know God’s thoughts on sex? Do we ever just stop to be mindful of what His intentions were in creating it? I know I certainly didn’t for a solid majority of my life. That doesn’t mean it was too late for me to learn, and, thus, it is definitely not too late for them or for you! God gives us a crystal clear picture of his intentions for sexual relationships all throughout Scripture. Instead of standing back and watching each other suffer as we “wing it” in the dating/relationship department, let us sit before the One who created love and sexuality in the first place and hear what He has to say about it!
#7. As the culture continues to devalue human life, our youth need to know from where true value comes.
When our kids understand the incredible worth they have, individually, to their Creator, it is only then that they can look at another human being and acknowledge that same value. This mentality flows, then, into all of the relationships around them. It builds the foundation for healthy dating, which leads to healthy marriages and then healthy parenting, etc . . . Psalm 139 tells us exactly how treasured we are in God’s sight and John 3:16 shows us the lengths He was willing to go to keep us close in relationship with him.
#6. Casual sex requires more life or death diligence than ever.
Although it’s not often spoken of, the negative effects of a casual sex culture are overwhelming. There is no such thing as “safe sex” outside of the confines of marriage. To believe there is, is a direct result of sexual propaganda that has successfully hindered a more in-depth and cognizant thought process on the subject. Sexually transmitted infections ring in at over 20 million new cases a year (U.S), with half of those occurring in youth between the ages of 15 and 24. The CDC estimates that undiagnosed sexually transmitted infections cause 24,000 women to become infertile each year. (http://www.ashasexualhealth.org/stdsstis/statistics/)
I also contend that there is a grave oversight in the area of the wholistic person when we ignore the effects of casual sex on the person’s psyche and focus solely on the consequences to the physical body. Depression, anxiety, anorexia/eating disorders, homosexuality, gender confusion, self-harm and suicidal thoughts/acts are all increasing struggles that our kids are facing. Something that God has created to be the single most intimate bond between a man and a woman, sex, Satan has twisted and distorted into a dangerous and destructive act of the flesh . . . and we all feel it somewhere deep down inside as the manifestations of a casual sex lifestyle rear their ugly heads in every manner of speaking. Our kids are searching for the truth.
#5. Marriage is under attack.
God knew Satan would twist and pervert sexual intimacy into a powerful tool to be used against us. To isolate us, to separate us from true relationship with God and with others. In defense, God gave us marriage, an invaluable gift that protects not only our bodies but also our hearts, minds, and spirits from Satan’s ill intentions on our lives. Although it’s much easier to justify bad behavior by picturing Him this way, God is definitely not an old man in the sky oppressing us with His traditions from ancient days and forcing us to hold out for sex. Marriage is the shield God has given us to defend ourselves completely from the attacks of Satan on our everyday lives and bodies. God intended marriage to be a mirror of the church’s relationship with Him. Of course Satan will seek to destroy this profound enigma in order to steal, kill, and destroy the beloved children of God.
#4. They think this is love.
Our kids think this is it! This superficial, physically-focused lust. Most of us know the love verse from the Bible. “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” THIS is real love. God’s idea of love. The kind of love that gives us constant hope in the midst of pain and rejection; endurance when life seems to be overwhelming us. I always offer the following analogy to teens as a comparison to measure their relationships against. The Holy Spirit can only produce good things: Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control. If your relationships are producing such things, that’s a good indicator it’s a God-pleasing one. On the other hand, if your relationships are producing the opposite of those things, it’s more likely time to bring it to your Heavenly Father for some reevaluation.
#3. Homosexuality is the hottest trend for teens today.
Yes, I said it. And I will say it as often as is needed to help clear the air on this epidemic. The trend toward teens identifying as homosexual or bi-sexual is no secret to any of us. This is occurring at elevated rates and parents don’t know why it’s happening or how to handle it. We’re just worried about our kids. In my experience working with youth, I offer that this trend is much less about sexuality and much more about a lack of relationship, a coping mechanism of sorts. A child seeking to identify as a member of the LGBTQ orientation, in this day and age, is more likely struggling to fit into a group where they feel accepted and uniquely their own, valuable person. The human desire to be loved and accepted, is a powerful thing. It’s the driving force behind every single one of us. Today’s youth are relationship-starved and tenacious about seeking after deep connections, whatever the cost. We do a great disservice to our kids when we pat them on the back and tell them we’re proud of their courage (in coming out of the closet), instead of acknowledging the fact that they’re hurting like heck and there’s a cancer gnawing away at them in the deepest parts of their soul. They need a life line, not a ribbon. Teens struggling with homosexual orientations have to be reminded, continuously, of who they are in Christ and of God’s specific plan and purpose for their lives. Every gift and ability they have, every one, was given to them with great care and intention for the purpose of serving the kingdom of God here on earth.
*There are many reasons your teen may be struggling with homosexuality. This comment addresses the most common reason I’ve experienced. A history of abuse, mental/emotional or physiological trauma also can be areas of investigation if your child is struggling in this area.
#2. Their futures depend on it.
From the time our children were small, we have been conditioning them to someday care for themselves and become contributing members of society. We have taught them positive self-hygiene habits, we have educated them, disciplined them, and taught them to drive cars, feed them themselves, and so much more. Now is the time to teach them how to have a healthy marriage and family someday. Now. It is never too early or too late to come alongside your children as they roll the cornerstones into place for their future. So many parents have told me that they want to but they don’t know how. My answer to that is, let’s find out together. Your child’s entire life depends on it. Reach out, get focused, and let’s equip one another, through the wisdom of Holy Scriptures and the camaraderie of friends and mentors, to change the culture surrounding our kids.
#1. What do you have that’s priceless and what are you doing to protect it?
Where are we in this battle for our kid’s lives? Are we standing on the sidelines, holding the manual, or are we fighting right alongside them on the battle-field? Are they looking around with fear in their eyes or is their gaze set with confidence and assurance that they are equipped with all they need to face their aggressors? We are a team and together, with God as our Coach, we are undeterred. A casual sex mentality is THE topic. It is the common denominator that connects every aspect of our children’s ability to relate well with others in this world. Stewarded well, it is an amazing and profound gift from God. Abused, Satan uses sex to degrade, separate, isolate, and destroy the intrinsic value of human life.