MOMS: 4 THINGS YOUR SON SECRETLY WISHES YOU KNEW ABOUT HIS TEMPTATIONS
As many of you know, we spent a Wednesday evening and a Sunday morning talking about sex and dating in the month of February. My goal was simply to give our kids some things to begin to think about. I hope looking at where they want to be in 10 years helps connect the dots to how their decisions today can impact their dreams for the future. I also challenged them to not think of themselves as pure but as striving for purity. As we know, none of us are without sin. The biggest hang-up I see with teens in this area is when they fail. If they cross the line that they believe God has for their lives, they live with that guilt. That is not from the Lord. I would rather they realize there is grace. They need to pick themselves up, receive forgiveness, and get back after the work of becoming holy.
As you may remember, I posted on Facebook the week of these talks to inform parents of what we would be talking about. My desire was that it would provide an open door for you as parents to be able to have conversations with your children. There are a ton of resources out there for you. One that I have found to be very helpful, especially as a parent of teen boys, has been http://www.xxxchurch.com/. XXXChurch is an organization committed to helping teens and adults navigate sexual temptation and the lure of pornography. They also have a fantastic, albeit often controversial, ministry to porn stars. I don’t agree with everything they have put out, but by and large I believe they are loving people the way Christ would. I found a recent article they posted for moms of teen boys to be particularly interesting. Shaunti Feldhahn states, “Even after years of researching what is in the heart and mind of men and boys, I still wasn’t quite ready when my pre-teen son began struggling with the same visual temptations as everyone else! In honor of all boys who want to do the right thing, here are four things sons secretly wish their moms knew about their struggle: It starts young. It is almost an overwhelming curiosity—and temptation. It is a temptation the honorable boys do not want. It is something they cannot confront well without our help.” You can check out the rest of the article here: http://strongermarriages.com/moms-4-things-your-son-secretly-wishes-you-knew-about-his-temptations/.
Our children, our boys and girls, need our help and our understanding. They live in an over-sexualized culture. Don’t miss the opportunities that come up to engage your young ones in these conversations.
The Cost of Fellowship
At the beginning of each year, Pearce teens traditionally begin to think about our senior retreat. For years we scheduled these weekends in the fall, amidst the busiest time of the year for most teens and families: we were inviting them to come away with us for a weekend of rest, relaxation, and reconnecting with Christ. It was always a double-edged sword, because often those who needed the rest the most were unable to come due to their schedules. About six years ago, we moved the senior teen retreat to the end of January. The Student Ministry team firmly believes that the lives of our students are over-scheduled with sports, musicals, Boy Scouts, Young Life, dance, work, homework, and copious other activities. To speak counter to this, we try to provide a retreat that is exactly that…a retreat. This year, we had three discussion times around the idea of Grabbing the Cup, Lifting the Cup, and Drinking the Cup. Other than these times and our meals, the weekend had very little structure. Kids took naps, watched movies, played board games, and played various sports in the gym. Karen Hopkins cooked snacks with the teens one afternoon, and I fried 20 lbs. of chicken wings on Saturday night. I’m not sure the students came home with any great spiritual revelations, but we do hope they realize that fellowship is important, and in order to really hear the voice of God, sometimes you have to remove the noise of life. Enjoy the photos—it was a fantastic weekend!
Hide the Word of God in your Heart
Psalm 119:11 speaks of David hiding the words of God in his heart that he may not sin. In the interest of transparency, I confess I am not diligent with my scripture memorization. When I speak with those in the Student Ministry who participate in Quizzing, I am often put to shame. I was reminded of this again as Pearce hosted the January conference tournament. Our students have been hard at work studying and memorizing the book Acts. This group of about 18 junior and senior high students is impressive, to say the least. They are not only learning what God’s Word says, but they are learning ways to apply it to their lives, and it shows. If you run into one of the Pearce Quizzers, feel free to ask them to recite Acts to you; or even better, let them know you are praying for them as they prepare to compete in the National Tournament in Seattle this June.
The Cost of Serving
Many see spring break as a time to get away, to go lay on the beaches of Florida or some other exotic vacation destination. As someone who recently returned from a week in Mexico, I can attest to the value of a warm vacation in the midst of harsh Rochester winters. However, there is also a group who has decided to spend $130 to go and serve the people of our city. This year, Flower City Work Camp has enlisted 730 students and over 300 adults throughout the Rochester area as volunteers. They will be going to various homes around Rochester and spending three days doing “construction,” Side Walk Clubs, basketball and soccer camps, and worshiping together in the evenings. This ministry is in its thirty-first year and is one of the best pictures of the body of Christ I have ever witnessed. It includes people from 60 different churches and denominations serving alongside one another and loving the people of our city. Pearce is sending 23 students, six site leaders, two overnight leaders, and four kitchen helpers. As they come to mind, please be praying for their safety, for the witness that is being given to the home owners and the children in the neighborhood, and be praying for the spiritual growth in our students.