My church had a Pure Hope Conference this weekend. Our presenter shared information and resources on how to parent in a sexualized culture. The resources at www.purehope.net equip parents and individuals on a variety of topics relating to online behaviors.
Our presenter spoke on the topic of purity as the foundational part of protecting our children. He mentioned that purity is not an accomplishment but that it is, rather, a relationship. This is a hope filled message. As a Believer in Jesus, I believe 1 John 3:3 which states, “Everyone who thus hopes in a Him purifies himself as He is pure.” Our culture and in many cases social media use can cause us to have a distorted view of our God’s design for our bodies leading to decisions that aren’t healthy. It is our job as parents to have a proper view of God’s plan for our bodies and to communicate this plan to our children through ongoing conversations.
He emphasized that we must model behavior in front of our children that help them see us as ones who are being purified. As God sanctifies us, as believers in Jesus, we will walk in a purified state while continuously being on a journey with Jesus. The idea of being purified means that there are habits, attitudes, hurts, fears, and failings which God would like to remove and bring us into close fellowship with Him. As the Holy Spirit helps us, we will be purified.
Fear can creep into conversations that parents have with kids about their bodies and God’s purpose for them. Our speaker from Pure Hope encouraged ongoing dialogue with our kids about the fact that God made them and His design allows them to experience His plan for them. I began to think of a scripture during the sessions which my family has memorized this year in 2 Timothy 1:7:
“For God has not given us a spirit of fearfulness but one of power, love and sound judgement (mind).”
“Sound mind” is a combination of two Greek words. (1) The Greek word that means “sound” is rooted in the idea of being revived, rescued and resuscitated. The second word that means “mind” refers to the human intellect and emotions. When I think of my mind and emotions being renewed, revived, rescued and resuscitated, it relieves me. I have this kind of mind because God gave it to me along with a spirit of power and love. God hasn’t given fear to His children, but our adversary tries to wound our minds with fear. I am thankful that God has rescued me from the power of sin and allowed me to live in a place of Grace from Him.
I love that the speaker emphasized that we will leave a legacy for our kids: a legacy of brokenness or a legacy of redemption. Even though we all have issues, God can use our story of brokenness and turn it into one of Redemption. Jesus provided for us the payment for our sin debt when He, as the Spotless Lamb of God, bore our sins in His body on the cross. Once we accept his forgiveness, we are equipped to walk in wholeness. He repairs and restores while we walk and talk in this life.
I want my legacy to be one of redemption. In 2 Timothy 2:21, the Apostle Paul gives principles that I discovered after reflecting on purification: “So if anyone purifies himself from anything dishonorable, he will be a special instrument, set apart, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work.” This Scripture reveals that purification leads to four healing milestones:
1. Purpose – God will give us a special purpose like an instrument has a specific purpose and sound.
2. Place – Being set apart means that God has designed a special place for us.
3. Practicality – God says he will make us useful so He has a practical reason for the purification.
4. Preparedness – God qualifies His children and prepares them for what is ahead.
If I am to be prepared for every good work, I must be purified from anything that is dishonorable. I must stay away from anything that is dishonorable and pursue purity not as an end destination but as a daily quest. There are many places online that lead directly into what is dishonorable. I am glad that God allows us a way to escape from any temptation. It is important as a child of God that I build my relationship with my Heavenly Father so that He will purify my thoughts and actions so that I can discover His purpose for my life, His place for me, His practical use for me and His preparation for every good work. I want my legacy of pursuing purification from God to be reflected in my actions. God has equipped me through His Holy Spirit to have a mind that has been and will continue to be rescued from the power of sin.
(1) The origins of the Greek words “sound mind” came from this website: http://www.renner.org/mind/what-does-it-mean-to-have-a-sound-mind/
Image credit in featured image is from https://youtu.be/1e2BiS3mCjA.