Article by Rick Thomas
Before I get into five surefire ways to motivate your child to use pornography, let me establish two critical points. The first is that no parent wants their child to become involved in pornography. We all agree on this.
The problem for many of us is that we do not understand the insidious allurement of pornography or how our behavior as parents, though unintentional, can help shape a child to crave something that can lead him to a lifetime of slavery.
There are always unintended consequences of our actions. We can’t act one way, good or bad, and expect our efforts to have no unintended consequences. Like a rock dropped into a lake, there will always be a ripple effect on our attitudes and our actions.
Secondly, pornography for a man is not primarily about the physicality of a woman. A woman’s appearance is an external magnet for the eye to enjoy, but the more significant problem for the man are the cravings of his heart.
Pornography is first and foremost about the theater of the mind where the man can enter into his virtual world and be king for a day, or in this case, king for a few minutes as he satisfies his mind with the “risk-free intrigue” of his cyber conquests.
Porn is a secret world that resides in the heart. It is lust, which feeds itself while in the darkness of a person’s mind. This reality makes what we do as parents all the more important because the mind of a child is not altogether discernible.
But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death. – James 1:14-15
The seeds of lust can be planted in the mind of a child years before he or she is old enough to act out on what has been growing inside the heart.
The continuum of being lured and enticed by sin, to desiring and conceiving sin, does not have to happen in a rapid sequence. It can take years for this “sinful sequence” to bring sin and death to a person’s life.
In most cases, the allurement and enticement of the porn addict begin in his mind while still a child. This early and unintentional training has been a consistent pattern I have seen in counseling. A child can be in “porn training” long before there is an awareness from the child or the parents.
#1 – Porn Training – Only certain kinds of women are porn-worthy.
The Christian home should be a sexual home. God said sex was good and His first couple was not ashamed about their unique sexualities. It was only when sin entered their world that people became twisted about sex and sexuality.
One of the most significant unintended consequences of the non-romantic marriage is how it communicates that certain kinds of individuals are not “porn-worthy.” Before your mouth completely hits the floor, let me explain.
A significant characteristic of the “porn trained mind” is how some people are worthy to be lusted after, and others are not worthy. We all know who is worth our lust-filled attention.
Women certainly know what can draw the attention of a man. This awareness is why so many of them obsess over how they look, how much they weigh, what they wear, and the horror of growing old.
Though they would not connect this as being porn-worthy, and they shouldn’t, many of them want to be worthy of their husband’s attention: they want their husbands to desire them. While this is not wrong, it can be deadly, especially in a marriage where the husband does not desire his wife.
A husband who does not romantically pursue his wife can send a message to his children that she is not worthy of being pursued. She does not fit his criteria. She is not attractive to him.
Couple this with filling the child’s mind with sensual media like television, movies, and the Internet, it begins to establish a kind of “beauty” that is worthy of a person’s gaze—a beauty the Bible does not exalt.
Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair, the wearing of gold, or the putting on of clothing—but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. – 1 Peter 2:3-4
An effective way to highlight biblical beauty is for the husband to pursue his wife. Lots of hugging and kissing between the husband and wife can establish biblical beauty for the child. Holding hands, dancing in the living room, hugging for extended periods, and smooching in front of the kids are beautiful examples of who and what is worthy of a man’s love.
#2 – Porn Training – Cyber women are downloadable and extinguishable.
It’s a bad idea to give a child whatever he wants. This parenting strategy makes him the perfect candidate for porn training. An integral characteristic of the pornographer is the immediate accessibility and extinguishability of the cyber girl.
A child who receives the desires of his heart when and how he wants them met is set up for a lifetime of instant gratification. When children run the home by easily persuading their parents to give them the desires of their hearts, there is virtually nothing to stop them from getting into porn if the opportunity arises, and the opportunity will arise.
According to Covenant Eyes (CE), porn addiction owns fifty percent of all Christian men and twenty percent of all Christian women. CE also says global porn revenues are down by half due to the amount of free porn online.
Porn is exponentially easier to access than it was just ten years ago. All a person needs to enjoy porn is a heart that lusts and access to the ubiquitous web.
If the child is set up to get his selfish desires met, it won’t be hard for him to be allured by porn. Instant gratification in a child breeds instant gratification when they are adults. We’re hiding our heads in the sand to think we can meet all the desires of our children’s hearts and expect them not to be that way when they are adults.
#3 – Porn Training – Married couples communicate less and less, a requirement for porn enjoyment.
One of the common complaints I hear from couples in marriage counseling is the couple’s lack of communication; they hardly talk to each other. If they do talk, it’s usually about family events, mutual transactions, and marital business.
Non-communication is a prerequisite for the “porn trainee” because viewing porn is not a verbal endeavor. Pornography is enjoyment for the twisted heart that does not require verbal interaction.
Non-communicative parents train their children to devalue words, which also teaches them to devalue the opposite sex. A man who does not talk to his wife is sending a loud message–she is not worthy of my words.
Nothing devalues a woman more than pornography. The female is objectified only to be used slavishly to satisfy the putrid mind of a man. Talking is not part of that scenario.
Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. – Ephesians 4:29
Husbands, your children need to see the value you give to your wife by giving her your best words throughout your day. Those are words that build up, cherish, nourish, and adore your wife. Show the value you place on the woman you married. Exalt her in the minds of your children.
Talking well is not only valuing the person, but it’s exalting the use of words. The purpose of words is one of the most influential ways the Lord builds us up.
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work. – 2 Timothy 3:16-17
No Consequences for Actions
#4 – Porn Training – Teaches a false confidence through a risk-free relationship.
A child who does not have to pay for what he has done wrong will learn how to get away with anything. No consequences for actions is the kind of thing that gives a porn addict a false confidence in a “risk-free” virtual environment.
Children need a comprehensive view of love, which means appropriate discipline when they do wrong (Hebrews 12:6). The spoiled child who suffers little consequences in life will have a low regard for rules and authority.
Porn has no rules, and it’s a low-risk habit. It doesn’t take much to do porn. It’s not like robbing a bank. A child who knows he can get away with things is easy prey for porn’s allurements.
Biblical discipline is a matter of respect and honor for God and His Word. There are rights and wrongs in God’s world. The porn addict does not have this kind of respect. The lines are blurred; a reality for him that did not begin when he first viewed pornography.
Many porn addicts have a low view of the law of God. They do not care because they have not been made to care. One of the ways you can discern respect and honor in your child is how he respects and honors his siblings or his mother.
Typically, a child will disregard his mother more than he will his dad. When children do this, they are transgressing the boundaries of honor, respect, kindness, and biblical love–all prerequisites for using porn.
Critical Community in the Home
#5 – Porn Training – Criticism and anger are the most common ways we devalue others.
Is your home a place of encouragement, praise, affirmation, and love or a place of frustration, impatience, criticalness, and self-centeredness? The porn world is a “refuge” where people go to escape the sadness of their lives. It’s a place where the addict can obtain personal satisfaction for his unsatisfying life.
A child is affected more by his home life than any other place on earth. Even the church cannot accomplish what the home can. If the home is not a shelter of encouragement, your child will be tempted to find refuge somewhere else. Porn is always beckoning the sad soul.
Porn will never criticize, condemn, admonish, discourage, or disappoint: these are the twisted lies of Satan. Porn “builds up” the hurting soul. All the addict needs to do is tweak his conscience to make it okay for his mind to do porn (Romans 2:14-15).
Once his conscience is appropriately hardened, he is home free–according to his self-deception (Hebrews 3:7). The best antidote for this kind of twisted thinking is to create a culture of encouragement in the home.
The Porn Trained Child
Porn training happens by abdication. Children are responders, and they will respond to what the parents give them. Their hearts are like open buckets, longing for their parents to fill them. It is the parent’s joy and privilege to cooperate with the Lord in directing the child to Him.
Parenting well does not mean your child is home free.
Poor parenting does not mean your child is predetermined to be bad.
A parent’s behavior does not determine the morality of the child; the grace of God does. However, your responsibility to biblically steward your children does matter. You should not presume on God’s grace (Psalm 19:13). The question for you to answer is, “How do I need to change to cooperate with the Lord in the parenting of my child?”
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