The Promise of Purity
As a mother of a fourteen year old teenage daughter conversations regarding sexual intimacy are a part of our interaction on a regular basis. The challenge is in presenting the information in such a way that she can receive it and not feel as though I am making a choice or decision upon her behalf. We as parents must realize that the choice to remain pure is just that ... a choice... and although it is our heart’s desire and we pray over our children believing that God can move on their hearts to keep themselves until marriage we also must acknowledge that the enemy desires to steal their innocence as soon as possible. Praise God we have the victory in more than one way … God hears and answers our prayers, the Word is powerful and doesn’t return void, and lastly; when we use wisdom in our presentation to our children they will hear the heart of God for them in this matter not a rule that is a challenge to break.
God’s heart is that our children keep themselves for marriage. We know this from the scriptures that talk about not awakening love before its time and do not fornicate. I personally believe that God desires to protect us from the heartache and pain of promiscuity which comes from being intimate either too soon or with the wrong person. When you are intimate with a person you become sexually imprinted by them physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. They leave a part of themselves behind and you give a part of yourself away which can never be regained. It is not because He doesn’t want us to enjoy the pleasures that sexual intimacy offers but because He knows that being intimate with someone outside of the covenant of marriage can cause damage that may not be felt or seen until much later. He is trying to protect us. When we are sexually active outside of the marriage bed we open ourselves up to being hurt on various levels. This is why God admonishes us in the Word against fornication and adultery. When we have sex with someone we are giving a very important part of ourselves away … not just our bodies … a part of our very spirit. Once that occurs it is very difficult to detach from the person with which we have been so intimate.
1 Corinthians 6:15-16 (New International Version)
15Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! 16Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, "The two will become one flesh."
So, how do we go about teaching our children on a topic that is uncomfortable, embarrassing and just not normally talked about openly? We must become comfortable with the topic, informed, and utilize the tools that are available to us. I chose to use the Passport to Purity curriculum by Focus on the Family. It was one of the wisest decisions I have ever made.
The Passport to Purity curriculum allows you to minister to your child in a non-threatening way that is comfortable for you both. It encompasses a variety of teaching tools to include books, audio cds and visual methods to help you as you present to your child in an in-depth manner the topic of sexual intimacy. I did this with my daughter and we had a wonderful time as we shared this experience. It was fun and informative not only for her but for me.
It is important that we as parents take our time with this very important topic because a wrong choice can cause irreparable damage to our children. The Passport to Purity curriculum calls for a weekend away with your child to go over all of the materials. They recommend that you take your child to a nice place where you can do something fun in between sessions. There are materials that you will need for the various sessions that you will use as teaching tools during your time together.
Here is a rendition of what is encompassed in one session of Passport to Purity. This particular session was one of our favorites called “Staying Pure.” The topic for this session included the following questions:
1. How far should I go?
2. What boundaries do I want to establish?
3. Where does God draw the line?
4. How to remain pure?
Memory Verse Song of Solomon 8:4 “Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.”
It included a list of things that could happen during a date such as:
1. Lying down while passionately kissing or hugging.
3. Holding Hands
4. Touching below the neck
5. Touching below the waist
6. Being alone with the opposite sex
7. Passionate hugging and kissing
10. Taking clothes off
Your child is asked to put them in the order from the safest to the most dangerous situation. And together you determine where the line normally is for most teens and then your child decides where their boundary will be on the line.
After the discussion there is a project that you do with your child that demonstrates why it is important to determine boundaries in advance of finding yourself in the situation.
You fill a balloon with water and you make this comment, “Let’s pretend that this balloon is filled with your sexual purity and innocence. This is all that you have. How much of it would you like to save as a gift for your spouse?” Let them answer. Normally, they will say “All of it.”
You say something like … “Well, let’s say that someone comes along that you kind of like and they want a little kiss … your first kiss and just a little bit of your innocence.” You gently prick the balloon with a pin and squeeze a tiny drop of water out of it. You say, “The person is saying to you, ‘It’s just a teeny drop … just a little kiss … not so very much. You will never miss it.’ ”
Then the balloon is pierced again while you are saying, “And then someone else comes along and they only want a little hug or kiss … just a small drop.” Piercing the balloon three or four more times you say, “Now, let’s say that person likes what they got so they want a little more of your innocence (heavy petting perhaps) so now you’ve lost several drops.” Pierce the balloon several more times and say, “Then you meet someone … you think that you might even love them because they are really special and you decide to give even more of your purity and innocence away. Unfortunately, you break up with this person and move on. All the while you (the balloon) are being slowly squeezed and emptied of what little you have left of your innocence … emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and physically.
Now, you are an adult and have met someone that you truly love. You have decided to get married and spend your lives together. What is going to happen to purity and innocence? What is left for the one you truly love? And how would you have lost your innocence, all at once or a little at a time?
This is how young people loose one of the most precious gifts they can give another human being and it starts a drop at a time. Then they give it away even more and the holes are larger and then it is no longer drops but a small stream until there is nothing left but emptiness. Don’t give away your innocence. Save the gift of yourself for the one you desire to spend the rest of your life with … it is a treasure that is meant for your wedding night.”
At this point, the session is over and you allow your child to share their thoughts and feelings regarding what you have shared with them. Ultimately, the choice is theirs to make about how far they will go in an intimate relationship before marriage but if we don’t do our due diligence as parents and believers they won’t know how to make the choice that will guard and protect their hearts.
We are our children’s first line of defense. Let’s not fail them.