This is part of a blogging series that the Idea Camp with help from Dan King put together leading up to their conference in Las Vegas. I’ve written about all the subjects so far and each topic has a link to a list of the other blogs in the series. On my blog, all posts for this topic are marked with the hastag #ICSEX.
I heard a report today that children WANT to sit down at the dinner table and have dinner with the entire family present. This ranges from 8 year olds up to 17 year olds. I think this is wonderful. For the longest time all we were hearing about was how the television has replaced dinner conversation and how the internet was corrupting children away from their parents, and it’s nice to hear some good news about the next generation for a change. But I’ve always wondered what constitutes dinner conversation in a Christian household. In case you weren’t sure I didn’t grow up in that setting and I decided to talk to some of the kids I work with and see what they had to say and what they said actually bothered me.
Basically they quoted Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever thingsare noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things”
Why this bothers me?
Because date rape is neither noble, just, pure or lovely but it needs to be discussed. Teenage pregnancy is not of good report and has little virtue in it. Sex trafficking is just plain ugly.
I want to come out and say in no uncertain terms that there is no such thing as “inappropriate dinner conversation.” Period.
I’m not even going to suggest that perhaps the conversation with the family is different than the conversation in public or in company, because there is a simple truth in the pages of the bible that we ABSOLUTEY must remember. “Train a child in the way (s)he should go and when (s)he is old (s)he will not depart from it.” “do not exasperate your children but bring them up in the way of the LORD.”
You cannot expect that your children won’t smoke if you never tell them that smoking causes cancer. Others might, but it is a parent’s job and responsibility to look out for that kind of thing. Similarly, you cannot expect your children to be able to approach sex and sexual sin from a Godly perspective if they don’t know what that Godly perspective is. And yes, the Dinner table is an excellent place for that conversation. The hardest conversation in the bible takes place during and immediately after a dinner generally called The Last Supper.
If our Lord needed something to eat and drink before telling his disciples the worst of the news in the plainest of terms, don’t you think we’d benefit from following his example with regards to our children?
There’s lots of other things we can do to raise up our children in a way to spare them the torment of sex as a critically taboo subject, but let’s face it – being open, honest, and plain about it all is probably one of the best things we can do.