Abstinence is Not A Bad Word
by Chere Williams
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Our body is a temple created to honor God. The bible clearly states that we should abstain from everything thatís immoral including sexual immorality. As Christian parents we have a responsibility to educate our children on the biblical principals put forth by God. The debate on whether sexual education in school is ongoing. Should our schools have the responsibility of teaching our children about sex, birth control, etc. or should this important subject matter be better left to the parents? My concern is that when the subject of sex is broached, it appears as though all the options are covered except one very important option and that is abstinence.
In today's culture abstinence has unfortunately become a bad word. Abstinence by many is considered old fashioned and unrealistic when in reality abstinence is exactly what we should be teaching our children. Parents have given too much control over to the schools, allowing them to be responsible for the reproduction education that children should be receiving at home.
Parents should have an open dialogue with their children about sex in a spiritual and biblical context. Pretending sexual temptation doesnít exist wonít make it disappear. Kids need to be educated on the spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental implications of having sex when they are teenagers. Abstinence is realistic and it can be promoted within the family. Society is more interested in providing birth control than being an advocate of abstinence and getting to the root of the issue.
The most important reason we need to promote abstinence with our children is one that is often overlooked. The reason is it is what God wants from his children. Beyond all of the obvious reasons, our children should understand that their body is sacred, a temple, that is to glorify the Lord and only to be shared in marriage. It seems God is ignored when there are debates about sex education.
Our culture screams sex around every corner. Television shows like, "The Secret Life of the American Teenager," whose focus is on teens having sex is one example of how our culture promotes promiscuity. One character, Amy has a baby, but that doesn't deter the rest of the teenagers from having sex and with multiple partners. Even the parents have a nonchalant attitude when it comes to their teens sleeping around. What is amazing to me is this show is on ABC Family! Television irresponsibly glamorizes sex making it seem enticing without dealing with the consequences of having premarital sex. It neglects to show the real hardships of teenage pregnancy, the emotional turmoil of sexual relationships, the spiritual damage, and the physical risks.
As parents it is our job to be aware of what our teens are doing, who they are friends with, and if the type of relationships theyíre engaging in are appropriate. We can't just tell them, "Don't have sex, because I said so." We have to explain why sex is meant for marriage, why God tells us not to engage in premarital sex, and we need to make them aware of the consequences. Donít be afraid to tell your children that sex outside of marriage is a sin. There are spiritual boundaries and it is okay to talk about them. When the time is right share your own experiences, whether they fell in line with Godís will or not, these are teachable moments for your kids. Donít forget to tell them about the consequences, I know it is embarrassing especially when we fall short, but often our personal experience is the best teacher. Conversations about abstinence should originate in the home. Letís teach our children that abstinence isnít a bad word, but a way of life that honors God. The foundation is not built in school, but built under your roof.
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