Expose the War

For some of you, this article will feel uncomfortable. It does for myself. Yet, I am pressed today to address pornography among our kids. This may get messy. But in Matthew 10 Jesus said, “Do not think I have come to bring peace, but a sword.” He exposed truth and things got ugly.

The enemy may have stolen land right from underneath you. He may be gaining ground inside your home in the form of a tiny seed planted in a tiny mind. You don’t know it, but God knows it and perhaps today is the day it comes to light. Allow me to back up…

Around 10 years ago, a bright kid from a solid God-fearing home was talking with my husband. He was a junior high kid enrolled in a Christian school in small town Iowa.

“You know what the hot topic around the lunch table is these days?” he asked. My husband listened as this young teen shared. “It’s who their favorite porn star is.”

That was 10 years ago. Today the lunch table conversation would be this: “See that girl over there. Check this out.” The kid proceeds to pass his phone around revealing the sex-ting conversation that took place the night before when their parents thought they were sleeping. Across the lunchroom she laughs with her friends, completely unaware that the eyes of her peers are feasting on pictures of her naked body.

However, this straight “A” girl with a perfect reputation has a little nugget to share of her own. She received her first “dp” last night. She’s a little convicted, but the next time someone asks her about it she will no longer feel rejection. A boy had finally found her attractive enough to send her a “dick pic.” And we squirm. Not them, it’s pretty normal.

The bell rings, and lunch is over. So is her innocence.

Yes, this is our middle school world today. Honestly, it’s among our elementary kids as well. It doesn’t matter if the child comes from a private school, has parents who are church leaders or actively involved in church. I can personally speak of real stories right among my friend group.

So if you think it’s not in your home or among your child’s closest friends, don’t be quick to assume. This battle is everywhere and parents and churches are doing little to fight. We are naïve, in denial, uncomfortable and don’t know how to deal with it. So we avoid or lightly touch the battle as if to think that’s enough. It’s not. Or perhaps the people who need to be addressing this don’t feel they can, because they too are addicted to pornography.

I become incredibly angry every time I think about it. Like some of you, I often feel helpless and hopeless. I am naïve myself and have much to learn about the culture of my children. Thank goodness for a friend of mine.

She recently made me aware of Finstagram (along with other things). She is my daughter’s dance coach and follows her students on social media. Perhaps this irritates some parents, but I am incredibly grateful. It takes a village to raise a child. And the day my daughter enters the world of social media, I will find comfort knowing she’s got our backs.

Anyway, you may be aware of your child’s Instagram account, but did you know she can create a “fake Instagram” account inside of the one you see? He would use an unknown name where he could post real pictures of what’s actually going on. Ironic that it’s “fake” when it reveals the truth. Finsta can be a good way to protect her privacy, revealing the silly pictures she only wants her closest friends to see. It also becomes a place where they feel safe to exchange pictures of what they truly spend their time doing, all while deceiving coaches, parents and others.

We often think pornography is only among boys and they are the manipulators. Not true. I have been informed of two true stories among my friends that involve two girls videoing or snapping pictures of themselves naked. In both situations, the girls shared the picture with a boy. Then they told friends that the boy threatened them to do so. In one situation, it became a legal situation, and he ended up committing suicide. The other child considered suicide and is still digging himself out of the situation today. In both cases, it was the girl who took the first nasty step.

We have a crisis among our kids today. Parents, we need to wake up. American churches, we need to wake up! I understand that we don’t know where to start. Our parents never went through this and are unable to help. We can’t filter these things off of cell phones and social interaction. However, we can at least start talking. We can at least open the doors and expose what’s really going on.

 

** Part two of this article will air tomorrow at 7am CST. Make sure to tune in, but while you wait, here are some free resources that you can research and start thinking of how to approach this topic with your own children:

https://www.lifewire.com/hottest-social-app-trends-for-teens-3485940

https://www.familyeducation.com/fun/mobile-apps/safety-beyond-facebook-12-social-media-apps-every-parent-should-know-about

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.commonsense.org/blog/42b5cb6a-9576-4d1d-965f-6fb29f3fe1a0

https://www.google.com/amp/s/mobile.nytimes.com/2017/09/06/style/teen-apps-bullying.amp.html

Above I mentioned “sexting” (texting nude photos)…. Gosh, that comment is even outdated! They don’t text anymore. Snapchat has completely replaced it. If you have teens I’m sure you already knew this. Lol

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.businessinsider.com/teens-message-in-snapchat-2016-7

 

Danielle Dykstra

Born and raised in Nebraska, Danielle graduated from Northwestern College with a passion for ministry. It is there she met her husband of 14 years. Together they have three beautiful children and reside in Brandon, SD. She is a stay-at-home mom, a tumble coach and a coffee lover. Her favorite thing to do is spend time with her family outdoors, biking and camping. After living through their own battles, Danielle and her husband share a passion to help others in the areas of marriage and addiction simply by sharing their story of God’s saving grace.

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