Three Pitfalls Every Dad Should Avoid – Part 3
(Click here to read Part 1 and Part 2.)
Talking about sexuality with our kids can be very challenging. For this blog, I’m not speaking about “the birds and the bees” or a how to have an initial talk about God’s design of sex. I’m going to be talking about the on-going conversation we need to have with our kids about sexuality.
As I stated in my previous blog, we don’t do it for several reasons.
First of all, it is embarrassing. Any parent who has tried this knows what I’m talking about. It is an extremely intimate conversation that makes us feel vulnerable and very nervous.
The second reason is because of fear. We either feel they are too young to handle such heavy information, or we think that if we put something in their mind that they haven’t thought of, they will start doing it. Unfortunately, when we allow fear to be the motivator in regards to talking about sexual things with our kids, this usually leads to talking about it “too late.” This forces us to try to rightly explain something they have already discovered or have been told about from some other source. Often the other source provides information that does not line up with Scripture or the values and morals you want to instill in their hearts.
If we are going to tackle this important subject with our children, where can we go for instruction on how to do it, and do it well? Like many things in life, it’s best to start with someone who has had experience doing it. God’s Word gives us one of those fathers.
Take Solomon, in the book of Proverbs. Solomon was a father who was attempting to do this very thing. Over and over in the first seven chapters, we see him pleading with his sons and daughters to hear his words and instructions. He is begging and pleading with them to listen to him and to learn from what he is saying. He sounds like a desperate man who seems to know what he’s talking about and wants to warn and instruct his kids.
He pushes past his embarrassment, and I assume his own failures, and hits the subject head on. He speaks specifically and talks in details. Let’s look at a few of his words:
Prov. 1:10 “My son, if sinners entice you, do not consent.” Solomon does not stop there and leave it for his son to figure out what “entice” means. He tells him exactly what that looks like.
Prov. 2:1 “My son, if you receive my words,…” Then he goes right into his instruction. In verse 12, he tells his son what following his words will protect him from: “From the man who speaks perverse things; From those who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness; Who delight in doing evil and rejoice in the perversity of evil; Whose paths are crooked, and who are devious in their ways; to deliver you from the strange woman, from the adulteress who flatters with her words; that leaves the companion of her youth and forgets the covenant of her God; For her house sinks down to death, and her tracks lead to the dead….”
Prov. 5: 1-10 “Listen to me, my son! I know what I am saying; listen! Watch yourself, lest you be indiscreet and betray some vital information. For the lips of a prostitute are as sweet as honey, and smooth flattery is her stock-in-trade. But afterwards only a bitter conscience is left to you, sharp as a double-edged sword. She leads you down to death and hell. For she does not know the path to life. She staggers down a crooked trail and doesn’t even realize where it leads. Young men, listen to me, and never forget what I’m about to say: Run from her! Don’t go near her house, lest you fall to her temptation and lose your honor, and give the remainder of your life to the cruel and merciless; lest strangers obtain your wealth.”
We have a father in chapter five who is pleading with his son to listen. He doesn’t avoid the subject or mix words in order not to paint an ugly picture in his son’s mind. God created sex, and it is a beautiful thing. But we have allowed the world to taint the view and dictate it as ugly and shameful.
So, lets ask God to help us get out of our comfort zone and begin to address the subject with wisdom—the wisdom Solomon is talking about in the first part of Proverbs.