The Internet is saturated with posts attempting to answer all the questions about the Duggar situation. In the midst of the news, analysis and theological discussions, I see few people discussing one critical topic: PREVENTION.
Most people would agree that Josh Duggar was raised in a conservative Christian home where the kids are raised with a conservative view of sexuality. There is apparently minimal exposure to TV and the “ways of the world.” You would think, by default, that Josh would know better than to do the things that he has confessed to doing.
But how would he know they were wrong if he weren’t specifically taught that they were wrong? Sure, he may have had some sense that it was a bad thing, but how would an immature teenager realize the far-reaching significance of what he was doing? What if no one in his life had never told him?
How will our boys (and girls) know that some forms of physical touch are entirely inappropriate? And probably hurtful? And in many cases illegal?
Troubled that our world’s view of sexuality is getting further and further from God’s design, my wife and I started a nonprofit to sound a wake-up call. Our experience at I.N.F.O. for Families has been that most parents still run from discussing sexual issues with their children and teenagers. Sure, they may have “the talk,” but they don’t get serious about giving their kids practical parameters for avoiding common pitfalls. These parents don’t realize how devastating the brokenness in our world is until someone close to them is “broken.” It’s much easier to assume that their kids would never dream of doing something wrong.
But how will our kids know certain things are wrong if they aren’t specifically taught that these things are wrong?
Sadly, we encounter broken people all the time. All you have to do is hang up a shingle that says you’re willing to help families who have been impacted by sexual sin and the church will (secretly) come running to your door.
We talk to men who have been addicted to porn since they were young teenagers. They hate it more than anything. They wish they could stop. As teens, they assumed that getting married would solve their porn problems. I haven’t met a single one who says it has. Chap Clark of the Fuller Youth Institute claims that more than 60 percent of our boys are addicted. These aren’t someone else’s kids. They are ours.
We know young men whose are classified as sex offenders because of one mistake made in their late teens. Something as simple as the sexual encounter a 19-year-old has with his 16-year-old girlfriend can ruin a life. If the relationship goes south, and she cries foul, he is guilty of statutory rape. And now he’ll be documented as a sex offender for life.