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Ten Ways To Keep Teenagers Thinking and Practicing Purity
People who manifest moral values in their attitudes and conduct are people who think about moral values. “It is the nature of thought to find its way into action.” (Christian Bovee)
Between annual events like the Purity Pledge Ceremony and Purity Ball, there should be other activities that will constantly remind the young people of lifestyle principles that are important to them.
Following are ten suggestions for activities that will help build peer support and keep them focused on moral values and the purity lifestyle. The involvement and guidance of parents and or mentors is recommended.
(1) Establish Accountability
Within the entire group, there will be subgroups of two or three who are closer to each other than to the rest of the group. Encourage members of the smaller group to form buddy teams, and be accountable to each other. Help them foster friendships built on trust and genuine interest in each other, so they could feel free to confide, give and receive counsel and assistance to each other. Encourage them to recruit someone they all respect if there is ever an issue too complicated for them.
(2) Collect Purity Quotes
Assign a certain number of quotations on purity for each member to find and record. Ask each member to memorize at least one and share the reason for that selection. Create a reference file for future use. In another meeting, members could select other quotes for discussion. Also try this with quotations on beauty.
(3) Watch Wholesome Movies
Here are two, for a start.
Love’s Enduring Promise from the Love Comes Softly series by Michael Landon is highly recommended. “What could be romantic froth becomes a quiet, well-paced, and thoughtful love story, thanks to a solid script, capable performances, and clean direction . . . wholesome storytelling and clear moral perspective.” Bret Fetzer
Pamela’s Prayer remains a favorite among promoters of moral values, although it receives negative reviews for several reasons: it promotes high purity standards which some think are unattainable; it is old (1998); the actors are not of a Grammy-winning caliber.
Still, many people think it’ is the best on the subject. It has a special appeal for dads and it makes them cry.
(4) Paint Self-Portraits
Not literally with paint and brush, but with words. Metaphors are very effective in helping people see themselves.
Some Biblical examples are:
- “the apple of God’s eye” (Zechariah 2:8);
- “His jewels” (Malachi 3:17);
- “the branch on His vine” (John 15:5);
- “a pillar fit for a palace” (Psalm 144:12).
Popular objects for comparison are the rose, a star, a light, a fragrance. Have members create or choose their own metaphors answering questions like “What positive aspects do I have in common with this object?” “How can I display those qualities in my everyday life?” “How is my purity walk affected by this portrait?” A personally created self-portrait can be very empowering.
(5) Practice Compliments
Have an appreciation session in which members feed each other’s sense of worth. Devise a method by which each member is assigned to point out something admirable in someone else. Have them practice compliments on virtues and skills like kindness, cheerfulness, speech as opposed to external features like hairdos, shoes, and body parts.
Create scenarios which are likely to happen, and for which it would be wise to have prepared responses. Have members take turns in role-playing the conversations in situations like the following examples:
- Someone borrows a textbook from a friend and finds pages from a porn magazine hidden inside.
- After declaring their affection for each other, one person tells the other, “If you love me, show me.”
- One friend is so scantily clad, the other feels uncomfortable.
(7) Explore Fashion
Have members collect fashion catalogs or random styles of clothing. Take turns evaluating the appearance by answering questions like: To what event or occasion would you expect someone to wear this? On a scale of one to ten, how “modest”, “decent”, “appropriate” would this be? Is there any reason why you would refuse to wear this outfit? Without being judgmental or condemnatory, stress how appearance and deportment influence people.
(8) Host A Beauty Forum
Both males and females need to understand the real meaning of beauty, how it impacts self-worth and influences relationships. Invite experts in various fields: diet, exercise, skin care, self-esteem, teenage biology to present the all-round healthy aspects of beauty.
- Real Beauty Evaluation Without A Mirror
The glass mirror can reflect the color of your clothes, the shape of your figure, your hairstyle and make up; but to evaluate your real beauty, you need to step away from that mirror.
(9) Befriend A Moral Dropout
One way for teenagers to encounter the consequences of immoral behavior without experiencing it, is to hear it from someone like the prodigal son who has been to the “far country.” In the process, they will learn practical lessons in forgiveness and restoration. Assign someone with tact to extend the invitation. Let the invitee know that there is no pressure to join the group. Show interest in his/her story whether it be a young, unwed teenage mother, or a teenage male abandoned by the friends who seduced him into trouble. The teenager must express a willingness to accept help, even professional if necessary, and subscribe to the moral values presented by the group. Try this only if the entire group consents.
(10) Create A Purity Blog
Start a blog for the purpose of having members express themselves about everyday issues. Assign one person to write the lead article and have the others read and comment for a period the group decides on, before the next person writes another article.
© 2011 Dora Weithers