Raising godly children in today’s society is a difficult task. The pressures and temptations that assault our children are strong and unyielding. As parents, we want what is best for our children, but we often find ourselves fighting against a culture that teaches that everything is okay – that there are no absolute truths and that we can do whatever we want with our own bodies as long as it feels right to us.
This, however, is not what the Bible teaches. The Bible teaches a higher standard – a standard that says that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit and that we need to keep that temple pure and holy. Today’s culture would argue that those standards are outdated, that purity is impossible and that we should encourage our teens to experiment with their sexuality. But as Christian parents, we know that Biblical standards are true for ALL time, purity IS possible, and the absolute best plan for our sexuality is to save sex until marriage.
Like I said, raising godly children in today’s society is a difficult task.
But it IS possible.
In order to raise godly children in today’s society, we MUST be intentional. We can no longer passively sit by and watch as the culture teaches a new standard of morality. We can no longer remain silent as television shows, movies, music, video games, and, yes, even schools, continually push the boundaries, plainly declaring that Christian values are dead. We MUST take a stand when it comes to purity. WE MUST!!
Our children are depending on us.
So what are some practical ways that we can help our children stand up to the current cultural attack on purity? Let me offer ten suggestions.
1. Model Purity in Your Own Life. Purity encompasses so much more than our sexuality. Take a good look at the songs you listen to, the shows you watch, the books you read, the jokes you tell. Are you modeling a life of purity? Are you thinking only on those things which are excellent and praiseworthy? Or are you dangerously close to pushing the boundaries in your own personal life? If our children are hearing us say, “You must live a life of purity!” but they are watching us read “50 Shades of Grey”, they are going to turn our message off all together.
2. Always Attempt to be the Main Source of Information for Your Children About Sex. Yes, I know it can be embarrassing and uncomfortable to talk to your kids about sex. But, guess what? Kids are talking about sex – at younger and younger ages. As parents, we need to be there to give them the correct information and to answer any questions that may come up. We need to keep the lines of communication open and help our children learn the TRUTH. And we need to teach them what the other sources will not – that the consequences of sex outside of a marriage relationship are serious and impact every area of our lives – physical, emotional and spiritual.
There are many ways to do this, but I highly recommend Family Life’s Passport to Purity. They have a complete guide for parents and pre-teens which includes cds, journals, and a leader’s guide. With their program, you simply take your 10-12 year old out for a weekend and follow the instructions they give. It is a fabulous program that helps your child learn the information he needs as well as challenges him to live a life of purity. Check it out here:
3. Model Purity in Your Own Life. This time I want to speak to single parents. You have an incredible opportunity to model purity for your children! If you are dating, be sure to follow Biblical standards in your relationship. Your children are watching you . . . they know if you are pushing the boundaries. What a fabulous testimony it would be for them to see you practice abstinence until marriage . . . and what a message you send to them if you do not.
4. Monitor Media. It is okay to tell your kids that a certain television show or movie is not appropriate for them to watch. It is okay to turn off the radio if a questionable song comes on. It is okay for you to say, “No”, even if every other parent says, “Yes”. Is your child active on social media? Make sure you have all his passwords and visit his sites often. Does your child have a phone? Don’t let him have unlimited access to it. It might seem overly strict to some people, but we are in a war . . . and the other side does NOT have our children’s best interests in mind. Stand up for your child and SAY NO!!
5. Model Purity in Your Own Life. I can not stress this enough! Take a look at your interactions on social media. Are you passing on information that is questionable? Are you “liking” jokes that fall short of biblical standards, visiting websites that make a mockery of purity, accepting friend requests that might cross the lines? Your kids are watching you and will learn more from what you do than from what you say. Period.
6. Teach your children that their value is found in Christ. Your child is valuable – not because of what he wears, how popular he is, or how he looks. Your child is valuable because of Christ. Jesus loved him and gave himself up for him. Teach your child that he is valuable, and that he is WORTH WAITING FOR!! Teach him to honor God with his body.
7. Model Purity in Your Own Life. Have you fallen short in this area? Be honest with your child, pray for forgiveness and start over. Show your child that God can redeem anyone and that God can help anyone live a life of purity. Find someone to hold you accountable in this area. Imagine what your child will learn from your example.
8. Make it difficult for your Child to be in a Situation where his Purity could be Compromised. I know that it is impossible to keep your child from every possible scenario, but you can control a lot. Don’t let your child be in a situation where he will be alone with a member of the opposite sex. If your child is dating, only allow group dates and serve as a chaperone. When your child has a friend over, make sure all interactions take place in a main room with other people around. Don’t let your child go over to a friend’s house unless you know and trust the other parents and know that the parents will be home. Protect your child from compromising situations!
9. Model Purity in Your Own Life. Don’t let yourself get into compromising situations, either. Take every possible precaution . . . avoid situations where you will be alone with someone of the opposite sex (unless it is your spouse). Hold yourself to the same standards you have for your child!
10. Pray! Pray! Pray! Pray! Pray for your child and his purity. Pray for your child’s future spouse. Be constantly in prayer. Remember, this is war . . . arm yourself with the proper ammunition!!
There are many other suggestions I could give, and perhaps you have some suggestions of your own. If you do, I’d love to hear them! Why don’t you share what has worked for you as you help your child maintain his purity?
And please help spread the word. Share this article with others as a way to encourage them to be vigilant about protecting their children in this sex-saturated society. Then come like my facebook page and follow this blog so you can receive more encouragement as you raise godly children in today’s world.
Until next time,