When I train communities, parents, and youth about the dangers of human trafficking, the one thing I have to address is sex. Sex trafficking here in the US looks very different then it does internationally and in third world countries. The tactics are different, the culture is different, even the grooming process is different. It is not even close to what you see in the movie Taken. Just like most dads don’t have his “particular set of skills”.
If we are going to empower and educate our youth against the manipulation tactics that traffickers use to lure our youth in, this topic is a must. In trafficking not all prostitution is sex trafficking but the majority of all sex trafficking is through some form of prostitution. Therefore, in this series about how to recapture the heart of our youth and learn how to become the biggest influence in their life, we will also be talking about how to safeguard and educate our youth in the area of sex trafficking. We must talk about the uncomfortable. We must address the elephant in the room. SEX.
So, here we go… let’s talk about sex!
Why is it we rarely talk about sex? Is it a “taboo” topic of conversation in our homes? In my experience we either do not discuss it or we teach our children not to have sex before marriage, and that’s it! No deeper conversations or education other then that. We either think our kids aren’t old enough or that they will just automatically pick up what they need to know. I will admit, talking to your kids about sex can be a very uncomfortable. What I have discovered is that what you don’t talk about can become the most dangerous paths and can cause the most damage. Ignorance is not bliss, it is dangerous.
Let’s talk about “not talking”. Ignorance is one of satan’s greatest tools to steal, kill, and destroy. If you don’t know about something; well, then you just don’t know. Whomever is the first to teach you or shine the light on the subject (whether the information is good or bad, correct or not) usually makes the biggest impact. By not teaching our children that sex is a good healthy part of life and is given it to us by God we are in essence relaying the unspoken message that sex is “dirty”, “wrong”, or “just for fun” depending upon how it is viewed in their immediate sphere of influence. God made us to be sexual creatures, with physical sexual feelings and everything God made is good! Satan has had the ability to twist and corrupt sex to be viewed in every way except that. He has taken something beautiful that God has given and attempted to distort it. How will our kids know what sex is? What it was meant to be? When to expect it? What to do or not do?
If we don’t share with them and teach them about sex and their bodies, someone will.
I’m not saying they need to know the intimate details of your sex life, but they do need to know the biblical truths about marriage, and physical facts about sex. Do you think they aren’t being told what marriage/sex is daily in our society? By friends? Books? The internet? Satan has skewed and warped images of marriage, sex, and family all around to try and steer us into sin, dysfunction, and death. If we don’t set the example and communicate truth and God’s good intention for sex with our children then how will they know? Or learn?
Ignorance and not talking about sex, hiding in shame or embarrassment because of our past is just as dangerous as the enemy framing sex to be a free for all in a Fifty Shades of Gray kind of “freedom”. Sex is going to happen. Your kids are going to have sex. Why are we not preparing them for it? Why are we not helping them manage the natural feelings and molding their hopefulness of fulfillment in that area for when the time is right? Why are we not helping them understand what physically happens to our bodies, emotionally happens with our hearts, and spiritually happens in our souls during sex? By doing this we gain the ability to advise them on the right time for sex and correct context of sex.
If you are not sure what to say, or are just reverting back to your experiences, what you were told at home or through the church, it may be time for you to do your homework on this subject. There are physical, scientific reasons God told us His design is for us to experience sex only within marriage. If we don’t educate ourselves about sex then we are setting ourselves and our kids up for the pendulum swing of hyper sexuality to shameful prudeness or visa-versa.
God formed sex as an intimate physical, emotion, and spiritual exchange between a man and a woman. Many of us want to think that we can just have sex without having the trust, the mental/emotional connection, and the spiritual fusion it was meant to have. This is why people tend to say we are just “having sex” not “making love”. This is not the case. Sex can be looked upon as just an act, but it was meant to be an encounter. There are physiological responses that happen during sex (different for women and men) that chemically connect our hearts and souls to that person. You have no control over this, as much as you want to think you do. The body releases oxytocin during sex which is called, “the love hormone” and it is automatic. You can’t just say: “Body – don’t release that hormone”. It doesn’t work that way. This is a great area to research and understand how God made your body in regards to sex and marriage. Was it meant for reproduction, yes, but not just that! Sex is how we express our intimate divine connection that is already made with your mate. Not what we use in an attempt to get that connection!
So what am I saying in a nutshell? Don’t allow satan to steal the joy of sex because it is a gift that God has given us. Don’t allow satan to deceive us into to being ashamed of it, pretending it shouldn’t and doesn’t happen, or allowing ignorance to open the door for the enemy to have access to your kids.
Don’t allow him to deceive us into thinking that sex is a tool to gain intimacy and control. Don’t allow him to deceive us into thinking that being “free” in our sexuality is actually freedom. Doing what we want, with whomever we want, whenever we want, and however we want brings us different kinds of bondage. Not freedom. Let God define sex through the Bible and research how God made your body to physically and hormonally respond to sex. Then let’s train up our children in the way that they should go in this area. If we don’t educate and empower our youth about sex, then predators are given a wide opening to take advantage of their ignorance and manipulate sex into what they want it to be. Let’s recapture the hearts of our youth and empower them with one love-wrapped conversation at a time.