Stating the Obvious

 

by Noel Bouché

I’m having one of those days.  You know, one of those days when, for whatever reason, your tolerance for pretense, apathy, insincerity, superficiality, ignorance, and indifference is particularly low.  One of those days when you just want to, well, call a pole a pole.

So here goes.

Porn is evil.  It is prostitution, it is sex trafficking, and it exploits, it demeans, it corrodes, it poisons, and it is everywhere.  Including in your home.  Do something about it.

Sex is sacred.  God created it, blessed it, and speaks about it with a holy frankness and candor throughout Scripture.  You should too, and so should your pastor.

Marriage is beautiful.  Honor it, celebrate it, protect it, enjoy it, and fight for it.  Today.  The opportunity to do so will be there if you look for it.

Children and teens are being assaulted.  Pimps and traffickers have access to them 24/7. Especially the pimps and traffickers who moonlight as media executives.  Wake up and lead these beautiful young people to Jesus, who gave everything for them.

There.  Just had to unload that.  No footnotes, no citations, no references.  Thanks for listening.  Peace out.

Noel Bouché serves as Vice President of pureHOPE.  If you would like more straight-forward, no-poles-barred talk in 140 characters or less, you can follow him on Twitter @noelbouche.  

 

Who Is This Jesus?

by Rick Schatz

Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven” (Matthew 16:17).

The identity of Jesus is the question of the ages.  Every individual must answer the question about the identity of Christ.

Just consider the message we find in Matthew 16 and the impact that the identity of Jesus had on His disciples.  These men had followed Christ for three years, and Jesus made them squarely face the question of His identity.  Moved by the Holy Spirit, Peter acknowledged that Jesus was the Living God.

As they recognized this truth, the life of every disciple was turned upside down.  Their faith grew until they became fully convinced that Jesus was who He said He was.  Their faith led them to share the good news of the gospel with an unbelieving world.  They spoke with clarity and boldness and were willing to give their lives to share the good news about Jesus as Lord and King.

For every believer and servant of Christ, He is not only Savior but also Lord of everyday living.  We’re called to live righteously, and many of us are blessed with the opportunity to be husbands and fathers.  We’re called to serve our families and to love our wives as Christ loved the Church.  Coming to know Jesus as Christ changes everything.  It brings joy, peace, and hope in this life and salvation for the next.

He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Matthew 16:15-16

So, who do you say He is?  How have you been changed by Him?

This devotion appears in On The Road: Meditations for Men Who Travel, a collection of inspiring and encouraging writings from dozens of Christian leaders and businessmen.  Click here to order a copy from Beacon Hill Press.

Rapper Shares Testimony on Overcoming Porn Addiction

Gospel hip hop artist Jahaziel stumbled upon the perverse world of porn at age six, and was addicted throughout most of his teen years.  This story is one we unfortunately hear all too often, but thanks be to God in Christ Jesus who is an all-powerful Chain-Breaker!  Jahaziel found freedom in the grace of God and through working with United Kingdom’s Safetynet to tell his story, he hopes many more men and women will find that same redemption.  Check out his testimony and the music video below:

EpicParent’s New eBook ‘Sex, Lust, & XXX’

EpicParent.tv is a friend of ours in ministry.  Founder Chris Spradlin is a dad who is all about “honest, on the edge, creative parenting.”  In his new eBook, Sex, Lust, & XXX you get just that.  Chris is gut-level honest about his own history and struggles, and he is not kidding around when he exhorts parents to really, truly go to war for their kids–

Chris writes, “It is our job–no, it is our great privilege–to guard, surround, protect, stand up for, and fight for our kids’ hearts.  Throughout this ebook, I’m going to share with you expansions on stories and ideas that I’ve written during the last couple of years. I am passionate about helping parents just like you cultivate purity in your family–even in this sex-saturated world.”

The ebook is absolutely free and holds nothing back.  The content ranges from media to the dreaded sex talk… make that talks… plural.  You can visit EpicParent.tv to download a free copy, and on your way you can check out this video from Spradlin’s son, Cole giving advice on how to follow-up with your kids after you begin talking to them about sex:

When Should I Start Talking to My Kids About Sex?

Last weekend, we were blessed to be part of the Southeast Christian Faithful Families Parenting Conference where parents from the Louisville, KY community and surrounding areas gathered for a time of equipping and encouragement.  Pastor Dave Stone led main sessions speaking from his new book series, and our Director of Parenting Ministry, Dan Martin led breakouts on Parenting In A Sexualized Culture. He also fielded questions, including this one:

“When should I start talking to my kids about sex and sexuality?”

If that’s your question too (and we know for many of you, it is), consider the following:

When does the world start talking to your kids about these things? And, do you want to be ahead of or behind those deceptive messages?

When your kids start being exposed to media, watching TV commercials, browsing online, hanging out with friends… THAT’S when you start talking to them! If we wait until we think they’re “ready,” chances are we won’t lead by equipping with truth, we’ll be responding to trouble.

Let’s engage in proactive parenting, not reactive parenting. (Click here for age-appropriate talking points)

We pray that all who attended the conference received new wisdom and greater confidence in their role as parents and shepherds of children’ hearts.  We pray furthermore, that those who were unable to attend will glean from the above insight.

We are grateful for our experience last weekend and excited as we look forward to our 2013 pureHOPE Parenting Conference with Southeast Christian!

See Also:

Why Your Family Needs a No Cell Phone Ball

by Noel Bouché

If you’re like me, you constantly worry about your kids’ media consumption and the amount of time they are spending in front of screens.

And if you’re like me, you also have a hard time pulling yourself away from your own smartphone screen.

“Okay, just one more minute…” so easily becomes a habitual response to my kids as I rush to respond to one more email, check one last news link, or sit in the car finishing one last phone call after pulling into the garage.

Well, this doesn’t go unnoticed by our children.  In fact, a study by Barna reveals that while Millennials incessantly text and Tweet, they feel that it is their parents’ “addictive” use of technology that inhibits quality family time!

It seems that the “Do as I say, not as I do” parenting technique still fails, even in the digital age.  It also seems that our ability to exhibit self-control (a fruit of the Spirit, by the way) is at a low ebb these days; faced with all the available gadgetry, we parents just can’t seem to focus, be present, and sign off of Facebook.

We now have a solution.

Our friends over at EpicParent.tv have developed a revolutionary new tool that we recommend every family implement.  The No Cell Phone Ball is a fantastic product, guaranteed to help you make giant strides in controlling tech use and guarding your family’s precious time together.  Watch the minute-long promo below for more information.

Caveat Emptor: The No Cell Phone Ball can cause damage to persons and property, especially in the hands of a crack shot like the lefty in this video.

Noel Bouché serves as Vice President of pureHOPE.  He and his wife have been married twelve years and have two energetic young daughters.  He is also a recovering lawyer who has yet to kick the bad habit of using obscure Latin phrases for no apparent reason.

What Are Your Kids Posting Online?

pureHOPE’s Dan Martin explains why parents need to talk with their kids about what they are posting about themselves online.  The short answer: because most of the text and photos they post are permanent.  Really.