"But I've got to think twice, Before I give my heart away, And I know all the games you play, Because I play them too...Cause you gotta have faith, faith, faith."
My heart longed to be noticed, to be valued, to be loved. The year was filled with personal turmoil. My friends had changed their minds about being my friends. I had unknowingly made some bitter enemies who worked tirelessly for my demise. An older boy pretending to be a man continued to force his way into my space, my regrets.
But this boy was different. I talked on the phone with him late into the night almost every night, hidden under my covers to disguise my disobedience. He shared his dreams and his dark thoughts with me. I felt noticed, valued, loved. Because I assumed I was so utterly alone and despised by all who knew me, the attention he gave me was intoxicating. If I couldn't be physically smashed by the alcohol I consumed on the weekends, then I created space to be under his influence in my emotions. His urges for more than I was willing to give him were flattering at first and easy to deny.
But now I sat numb in my room. My life was changed. I was a lonely, shattered girl pretending to be a woman.
This journey towards exploration and confusion started with kids in our neighborhood when I was in primary school. They had magazines full of nakedness and we all drank it in. I saw perfectly sculpted women and believed beauty to outward, manipulative, sexual. My thoughts sunk to levels that I had no ability to understand. These thoughts plagued me and followed me into desperate places. Sexuality became soap operas and magazines which were left to the interpretation of me and my childhood friends which only grew into what a boy would want, what I was strong enough to deny, and how long I could manipulate and avoid the reputation of being one of those girls, even though I already knew I could be the leader of those girls.
As I became a mom I found myself begging God for purity over my sweet new baby girl. My motive for her purity and her future siblings was based in fear, not in holiness. I longed for my precious treasures to escape the pain and work of walking towards health and wholeness in their sexuality. As the years have gone by, my motives in desiring to raise them up in the way of Jesus so they can walk in freedom and know for sure that they are noticed, valued, loved have matured.
I'm sure you've thought about the sinking sand of sexual turmoil that surrounds our children. Do you realize they are constantly bombarded in ways that make my childhood temptations look small? Commercials, store fronts, jokes, the internet, magazines at grocery store checkout lines, and peers at baseball, drama club, or school speak of situations and scenarios their young minds have no capacity to translate.
Speaking of the culture and world around us, 2 Peter 2:14 says, "They have eyes full of adultery, insatiable for sin. They entice unsteady souls. They have hearts trained in greed." On Sunday Chad taught about this verse. He explained to us that Peter warned that culture looks at every woman considering them as a candidate for adultery. I wanted to puke and weep all at the same time, thinking through my own story and all I've sown into my own kids to protect them from such heart break.
Most of you know I am passionate about raising up my kids to honor God, to walk in freedom, to know they are purposed to act justly, love mercy, and to walk humbly with Jesus. They are treasures God gave Chad and me to steward, so I strive to steward with action and intentionality. I pray, read, research, talk with others, and seek to understand so we can parent them to the glory of God. This most definitely includes discussing sex and sexuality with each of them. These discussions continue to grow and mature through each new stage and situation my kids face. I draw from the Spirit in my life, my own experiences, and helpful resources to do the very best I can to point to health and Jesus with each question and concern they have.
I've wanted to write a specific series about talking to kids about sex for awhile. The message Chad preached coupled with the age of my family spurred me to action. While I'm not sure how many posts I will write, I am sure this is necessary and some of you have asked me to do it.
Thanks be to God that He makes all things new. He continues to speak His love and value over my life. He loves me, of that I am sure. He makes beautiful things out of us, doesn't He?
These guys? They slay me. They are so worth the effort!
If you have specific questions you would like me to address in this series, please leave a comment or send me an email.