Thursday, August 07, 2008

Pure and Keeping Them That Way!

Let’s face it, when our kids become teens, there are a lot of internal feelings about the opposite sex awakening in them.

Top that off with the media using sex to sell everything and peer pressure, and it‘s no wonder our teens are having sex before their Biblical wedding day!

Ignoring our teens new feelings and awareness of the opposite sex certainly isn’t going to keep our teens pure. Scaring them with a lot of details about disease or preaching at them 24 hours a day isn’t going to work either. Letting your children know that you are there for them and open to discussing anything and everything will help. Bringing up the different aspects of dating, sex and Christian love in a casual way during alone time, so they don’t feel embarrassed or pressured, just might work. Get your teen talking about these issues before they start dating, while they are dating and when they fall in love. Your teen and their relationships are evolving, your discussions must evolve as well.

But if we are not talking to our teens on their own level, we may as well not talk at all. I’ll never forget when I was seventeen and my Dad asked me what me and my boyfriend had done on our date the night before. I said. “We went to a movie and then we made out.” My father yelled, “What!” with a horrified look on his face. Confused, I explained, “What’s the big deal? We were just kissing with our arms around one another.” My Dad said, “Oh…”: with a look of relief on his face. “When I was your age, made out meant you had intercourse.” Get to know the modern terms of language that your teen is using in his/her environment.

I believe it all starts with your teen understanding that Christian love means respecting yourself and respecting others. If they care enough about themselves and others, they will treat others with kindness, expect others to treat them with kindness and remember to never ask others to do or allow themselves to do something that either one of them knows or feels is wrong. Perhaps if we can instill the value of respect in our teens, they will have a better chance of remaining pure until their Biblical wedding day.

For a teen to make a promise of purity to God, themselves and to others is a big undertaking. They need to freely and willingly make the commitment in order to succeed. It is our job as parents to guide them in the right direction, not to pressure them or force them. They also need to believe with all their hearts that if they succumb to desire, there is forgiveness from God, from their parents and from one another.

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