I was having a conversation last week with a young dad that has a little girl and we were talking about the foreboding years ahead when our daughter’s will be interested in the opposite sex. We talked about the young men we knew (And we both know many…he is a coach and I am a pastor), we both were struck with a bit of terror at the prospect of our daughter’s trying to find a Godly man to marry one day. It seems the pickings are pretty slim. As a father with young girls in my home and a new little girl on the way, I am convinced that I need a plan NOW to help them down the road. When I talk to other parents who have older girls or younger girls in the home I am often shocked at how unthinking most Christian parents are about their child’s sexual purity. I fear that Christian fathers have thrown our most precious gifts to the teenage boy wolves. Here are a few things I have been thinking about that maybe you need to think about too, especially if you are a Christian dad with girls living in your home
1) I MUST TEACH MY GIRLS THEIR GREAT VALUE – We live in a day where sex is cheap and purity is old fashioned. I must teach my little girls that their bodies are not cheap! They have great value and God gave them their bodies as a gift that they will one day give to their husband’s whom they will love and will desire to share their life with. Most girls give themselves away sexually because they do not value themselves or their bodies.
2) I MUST PROTECT MY DAUGHTERS’ SEXUAL PURITY – Two things epitomize youth: ignorance and arrogance. If a father does not help his little girl then she will give that which is most sacred and valuable away to the first hormone driven boy that comes along and says that he loves her. How many young girls have given themselves to a young man that is no longer part of her life? He took a large part of her heart that she can never get back. Teenagers are naturally wired to have deep sexual passions. As a young person’s body changes the hormones that they are experiencing are new to them and very strong. I must make sure I do not allow in any way for my daughter to be alone with a boy she has interest in. I am really looking into the whole idea of courtship. Courtship is a time where a young man and woman get to know each other under supervision.
3) I MUST TEACH THEM THAT GOD MADE SEX AS A GIFT – the world has high jacked sexuality and I must teach my children that it is most enjoyed in the context of marriage as God designed it.
4) I MUST HAVE HARD CONVERSATIONS – I would not allow a 16-20 year old boy to drive my car if I did not first tell them what I expected. Your better believe that no young man will take my daughter out without first answering very hard questions and looking me in the eyes. Here are a few sample questions I will ask: Tell me about your relationship with Jesus? Tell me about your family? Tell me about what your plan is for a future career? Tell me what you think it means to be a husband and father? Tell me about why you are interested in my daughter? Tell me what you think is appropriate as far as physical touch goes with my daughter? (At this point is he thinks any physical touch is appropriate that interview will be coming to a rapid close).
5) I MUST HELP THEM KNOW WHEN THEY ARE READY TO BE PURSUED BY THE OPPOSITE SEX – Dating in America is a system designed for purity failure. I must help my girls understand that until they come to a point in their lives when they are ready for a husband and a home then they should not awaken love in their hearts. Once turned on it is almost impossible to turn off the sensual love that a young man and woman feel for each other.
6) I MUST MODEL WHAT MY GIRLS NEED TO LOOK FOR IN A MAN – I must treat my sweet wife Charyl the way I want a man to one day treat my daughters. They need to be able to look for a man that looks like me as I strive to look like Christ.
7) I MUST GIVE MY GIRLS CONSTANT AFFECTION – As a dad if my girls receive healthy male affection from their father then they are much less likely to look for it elsewhere. This is easy for me…I’m a hugger J
8) I MUST LISTEN TO MY WIFE – She has been a teenage girl and I have not. She has much wisdom and insight and will help me know when to speak and when to shut up.
9) I MUST LOVE MY GIRLS DEEPLY NOW SO THEY WILL LISTEN TO ME LATER. If I build a foundation of love into my children throughout their lives they are more likely to listen to me when it is time to talk about this area of life. I understand my girls are going to make bad choices and maybe even compromise their purity in spite of all the protections I will try to build into their lives. I will seek to help them understand that no matter what they do they can always come to their daddy for help and I will always be there with arms open.
What are your thoughts on your daughters or sons and helping them in the area of purity? I would love to hear from you.
Here is a link that has some other helpful insights on this topic http://www.epm.org/resources/2010/Jan/28/guidelines-sexual-purity/
PS – I have a boy too…maybe next week we will talk about what I expect from him