Clothes Are Good

We have lost our minds.

Reality stars and those who became stars as children (to entertain our children) are vibrant, technicolor reminders this culture has lost its way when it comes to all things sex.

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I wish I didn’t have to talk about these things to my kids, but I do. We must. It is out of control.

When it comes to issues of sexuality, my values fall all the way to the “right”…tucked within the pages of Scripture and protected, when all is well, by the bounds of marriage. But even if that is not you, surely we can find some place, somewhere in this discussion to agree. PLEASE?

Junior high aged girls are sending naked pictures of themselves to boys on their phones.

Junior high aged boys are begging them to do it.

Many of us grew up in the culture of “I’ll show you mine if…” The human body is and always will be a source of tremendous ____________________ fascination; pleasure; shame; connection; distance. There is likely no way to navigate this road without bumps and bruises, but for the love all things pure and precious, can we try harder?

Some statistics say the porn industry is a 13 Billion Dollar a year enterprise.  I am sick to my stomach typing those words.

That amount of money means that LOTS of people are buying in. Lots. More than we want to admit. More than we are facing.

I believe there is a direct correlation between the porn industry and the sex trafficking industry. And I believe there is a direct correlation between the sex trafficking industry and underage girls being taken for prostitutes. I won’t connect all the dots here and now, but a deadening of values must take place before this could ever begin to take root. Billions of dollars of annual revenue means it has not only taken root, it is flourishing.

These are our daughters.

It is easy to weep and wail when ISIS comes into villages and removes all girls nine and older, but are we are allowing a silent rapist to come in and sexually abuse our kids? My daughter’s generation grew up watching Hannah Montana, admiring her and the actress who played her, then watched as she gave up all boundaries, all modesty, all purity. Is it any wonder it is hard to find our way?

When a young girl sends her most private images to a boy, a part of her disappears forever. No matter what the banter; I don’t care how many times the lie “it’s no big deal” is repeated; I don’t give a schmidge of credence to the fact that everyone is doing it. It needs to stop.

Girls have always been desperate for attention.

Boys have always been curious.

Moms, we have to start talking. We have to tell our daughters that their bodies are beautiful and private. Sex is a wonderful part of marriage but a painful part of casual, immature relationships. We have to ask if our girls feel pressure to pose, or have given into that pressure before. If they have…we need to love them with abandon. We have to ask them how to help protect them. And we have to be the adults.

If it is not my daughter, it is her friends. I promise someone she knows has done/is doing this because we have lost our minds and our direction. The writer of 50 Shades of Grey is the fastest selling author in history. Would anyone want their son or daughter to be those characters? Seriously, if Christian Grey drove a beat up Pinto and lived in a mobile home, would millions of moms have read that book?

What is readily available on cable tv was a rated R movie just a few decades ago. I flipped through pornography at a hotel just using the remote control. This was HBO–not the “Adult Channels” you can block.

Thanksgiving weekend, while visiting family, I got home late and started looking for something to watch and came across…Pornucopia, Down In The Valley. That is what the TV Guide called it. My 12 year old son was in the next room, with access to that very channel. Lord, help!

I have never regretted not having cable television in my home. 

I am thrilled that some hotels are changing the way they do things. WE ALL NEED TO.

We need to be talking to our sons. It is not just with the male population that demands this, but boys are certainly in the belly of the beast. Tell your boys not to ask girls to send naked pictures of themselves. I don’t care if it is embarrassing. I don’t care if you don’t think your son would do that. Tell them anyway. And tell their friends.

I am starting to wonder if part of the strategy I want to implement in my life is to purposely gather with my kids’ friends’ parents. If our kids see us all talking; if they know we are in this together; if there is less hope of “getting away with it”, perhaps we can make some inroads? I am starting to think that the solution for more and more issues begins with gathering around the table.

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The conversation has to address the fact that for every-day kids, from every-day families, sending images on cell phones (that were once only available in Playboy magazines hidden under the bed) is happening every day.

Silence won’t end it.

Please know I am on your side. I am on our kids’ side. I believe this sexting, pornographic culture is hardening hearts and breeding dissatisfaction.

But let me be clear. If you will come at me with “kids will be kids” or “this is no big deal,” I don’t care about your opinion.

I just don’t. There is not room in my world for it. ITS TIME FOR THE TRUTH TO BE TOLD.

Men and women who purpose to get aroused by images of people they are not married to are addicts. People who pay to have sex are broken. They need healing and help.

Sexual arousal and activity disconnected from (a marriage) relationship disconnects people even more. Lonely desperation is the guaranteed destination that road offers, and our kids are beginning down that path at a time when family, friends, school activities and grades (and getting to know Jesus) should be their main focus.

I don’t pretend to know what the answers are, but this is what I am going to do:

  • I am going to start talking about it. I am going to talk to my daughter, her friends, and youth group leaders. I am going to talk to other parents, and find a group of people who believe we are in this together.
  • I am going to learn. I will start here: http://endsexualexploitation.org because I have to start somewhere.
  • I am going to pray. I will write notes to remind myself. I will pray for pure hearts and clear eyes for my family and friends; for my pastors and teachers.
  • I will try to spend my money where my mouth is. Carl’s Jr. won’t get my business until they change their advertising. I will support Hilton Hotels and tell them why. I will never, ever spend a dime on anything to do with 50 Shades of Grey.

Will you join me? Together, we can do this. We can teach our kids that naked is not the answer and that clothes are good. Keep them on.

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