I feel very strongly about this.
We should be sheltering our children more.
It seems so impossible to do these days. Commercials about erectile dysfunction. Bed scenes on TV showing way too much. Miley Cyrus twerking. I was flipping through the channels one night a few weeks ago and some music awards show was on. Britney Spears, with hardly anything on, was atop a big guitar looking like she was humping it. It was not attractive. It was disgusting. I like the show The Voice, but I am so tired of looking at Christine Aguilera’s boobs. Honestly. Cover them up.
And it isn’t just the TV. We can try to shelter our children at home, but we can't keep them 100% sheltered. I remember when my daughter was 11 she went to a sleepover and the mom had rented R-rated movies for the girls to watch! I found out the next day and I was so upset.
When my daughter was in 2nd grade and I was drying her hair one night. She started singing the song by Alanis Morissette with the words “Is she as perverted as me? Will she go down on you in a theater?” I was like “Whoa!” And I had a conversation with my 8 year old daughter I never imagined I would have – about what a pervert is.
Some things are better left unknown until they reach a certain maturity level. They just are.
I recently re-read the book The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom (affiliate link) and it is the following passage which is prompting this post. I can't stop thinking about it.
Scene - Early 1900’s. Corrie’s dad owned a watch shop and every Monday he would take the 30 minute train ride to Amsterdam to get the exact time from the Naval Observatory. Sometimes Corrie would go along with him.
Oftentimes I would use the trip home to bring up things that were troubling me, since anything I asked at home was promptly answered by the aunts. Once – I must have been ten or eleven – I asked Father about a poem we had read at school the winter before. One line had described “a young man whose face was not shadowed by sexsin.” I had been far too shy to ask the teacher what it meant, and Mama had blushed scarlet when I consulted her. In those days just after the turn of the century sex was never discussed, even at home.
So the line had stuck in my head. “Sex,” I was pretty sure, meant whether you were a boy or a girl, and “sin” made Tante Jans very angry, but what the two together meant I could not imagine. And so, seated next to Father in the train compartment, I suddenly asked, “Father, what is sexsin?”
He turned to look at me, as he always did when answering a question, but to my surprise he said nothing. At last he stood up, lifted his traveling case from the rack over our heads, and set it on the floor.
“Will you carry it off the train, Corrie?” he said.
I stood up and tugged at it. It was crammed with the watches and spare parts he had purchased that morning.
“It’s too heavy,” I said.
“Yes,” he said. “And it would be a pretty poor father who would ask his little girl to carry such a load. It’s the same way, Corrie, with knowledge. Some knowledge is too heavy for children. When you are older and stronger you can bear it. For now you must trust me to carry it for you.”
And I was satisfied. More than satisfied – wonderfully at peace. There were answers to this and all my hard questions – for now I was content to leave them in my father’s keeping.
There is some knowledge that we should try to carry for our children as long as possible.
Don't let your children carry such a load.
I feel very strongly we should shelter our children more.
How do we do this in today’s world?
I don’t know. I don't have the answers.
But I believe a beginning point is on our knees in prayer.