My teen son went back to public school this year after six years of educating at home. The transition took my breath away and kept me on my toes in many ways. First of all – girls. No one tells a mother the truth about these things, or if they do, I haven’t been reading their blogs, so here I am telling it the way it is.
Walking alongside my son this past school year, I got a glimpse into your world. I got to see the texts girls send, the group chats where everyone is saying things and sharing pictures they know they shouldn’t and the posts some of you put on YouTube, Insta and Twitter. The world can be cray-cray these days. I know not all you sweet girls, have given in, but I’m telling you, and you know it’s true. Girls are literally throwing themselves at boys. Watching the world you are growing up in got me thinking about you. I wondered if you know the secrets we older women know? Has anyone taken the time to do anything besides teach you how to put a condom on a banana in Health Class? Just in case they haven’t, I want to let you in on a few things. I want to make sure someone says this to you.
From one older woman to you young women, I’m qualified to give you a lay of the land. I was young once too. Yes, the fact of that matter is hidden a bit beneath a body that birthed two boys, some wrinkles around my eyes, and legs which resemble a road map from my mid-life varicose veins. Underneath the surface is the heart of the girl I once was. Not only that, I’ve been further down the road, which means I’ve got a vantage point you don’t have yet. Just like you could tell a 5th grader a thing or two about what’s to come, I’ve got some hard-earned wisdom and experience that just might change your life.
Believe it or not, it wasn’t too long ago that I had crushes, thought about boys non-stop and wondered if I measured up enough to get the attention I craved. Thankfully, I didn’t have to contend with programs like SnapChat which are set up so you can send a boy a picture of your unclothed body and have all seeming evidence of that picture disappear as quickly as you posted it. I did enough foolish things without having access to tools designed to take advantage of me in that way.
Girls, don’t you know? Are you not aware of the supreme value you have been given by God? Your body is a gift to you. It is a gift you get to give away to someone very special one day. It’s not for every young guy to gawk at, lust over and use for his own pleasure. I saw a chat conversation in which a young man said “Your T & A are the talk of the school.” This was meant to be a compliment. I wanted to run over to his home and smash his Iphone with a hammer. I restrained myself. The point is, you are more than your body. You are a complete person who has such value. There never was anyone like you and there never will be again. For a boy to reduce you to your T & A or anything else physical is just wrong.
Your body, whether you like the way it looks or not, is something to be protected and cared for. Guard it like the crown jewels. Purity isn’t a punishment. It’s a privilege. You get to hold onto this treasure and give it to one man forever. He will earn the right to have all you can give him when he commits his life and heart to you.
Until that day, you need to wait. Ohhh that unpopular word. How on earth can you wait when so many girls around you are rushing forward and bragging about what they have seen and done? How can you hold out when boys are pressuring you to go forward with them?
The answer lies in knowing your value. You hold out because you are worth it. I don’t know your story or your family life. I don’t know if you have been raised with values that affirm how amazing you are and how much God, the Creator of the Universes and the careful Creator of you, loves and cherishes you. I wonder if you have been told the good things about yourself and had your gifts and talents drawn out by someone who sincerely believes in you. I sure hope so. Even if you haven’t had people around you building you up, I want to share a secret with you. Giving your body to a boy won’t fill the gaping hole of worthlessness you feel. In the moment you might feel admired, desired, pretty, and even powerful. In the moment. Afterwards, you will feel used up, less than and you will have a secret to keep – one you will wish you could erase.
With all the girls around you possibly doing the same thing, the feelings of emptiness may not surface right away. You may feel you are finally fitting in by sending nude pictures or going further with guys than you really want to in your heart. This is the price you pay for acceptance. This is what it takes to fit in. Your parents don’t understand. They aren’t living in your world. I know. My parents didn’t live in my world either. They were from another era. Guess what. You won’t live in your teen daughter’s world either. Still, some truths span years and eras. The fact of the matter is that sex outside of marriage hurts because it goes against the very grain of how the world was designed to work. Allowing someone inside your intimate places requires that they be committed to you wholeheartedly. The only commitment that ensures that intimacy is marriage. Save yourself for this one special man. Choose him carefully and wait for him.
You might think this one particular boy – the one you know right now who seems so different from all the others – is going to be your lifetime love. After all, you’ve never felt the way you do when you are with him. Okay. I’ll give you that. Sometimes high school relationships last on and the couple ends up married. So, if that’s the case. Let’s wait and see. Wait until after high school. Keep yourself until he marries you. You are doing him the favor of saying, “I’ll cherish you enough to remain pure for you after we are married.”
If I’m talking to you and you’ve already sold out, bought the lie and are living in the residue of what you chose, know that there is great forgiveness and healing available to you. Just because you have let someone take advantage of you, doesn’t mean you have to keep on. You can draw a line now. You can decide to turn the other way. You can choose purity and move forward from this day. God is the God of grace, mercy and second chances and He is here for you, sweet girl. He wants to cleanse you and give you a fresh start. Will you let Him?
It takes far more character and courage to swim upstream when everyone around you is doing something your gut knows isn’t right. But, girl, you are worth it. You may have the deepest regrets from giving in. You will never regret waiting.
I don’t usually write letters to teens on this blog. I usually write for parents – to give us all support and encouragement as we raise our children. Today God laid it on my heart to write a letter to all the girls I see – the ones who don’t even know the long-term pain they will endure from their short-term choices. If you know someone who would be blessed by this letter, please send it to them. Let’s come alongside these girls and show them how God calls them beautiful, beloved and worth the wait.
Photo credits – common license photos from Morguefile and Unsplash