To “tread” means to walk in a specified way. Tread Boldly.
As a parent, especially of teens, you may consider treading carefully as the best way to handle hormones and cold shoulders and uncomfortable conversations. But, as you’ll hear Josh explain; you are called to tread boldly.
This is a special episode as our very own Josh Glaser releases his first book today – “Treading Boldly through a Pornographic World: A Field Guide for Parents.”
Josh and co-author, Daniel Weiss, lay out the groundwork for you to be better equipped in our digitally saturated culture. Don’t shy away from this one.
This is a unique opportunity to hear Josh’s heart and advice before reading the book. What’s one way to tread boldly today? “Focus on what you are FOR, not against.”
Backward Vision: “Don’t have sex until you’re married. Don’t look at pornography.” That’s backward vision. Look forward.
Don’t focus on the sin. Focus on the goal.
Kids who have had premarital sex need a vision that is more robust than how they did sexually in one given moment or season.
Forming a Family Vision:
- Mark your Starting Point as right here, right now. Understand it can and will travel with you.
- Consider falls or setbacks as opportunities to grow NOT failures of the goal.
- Let the focus be on what you are FOR versus what you are against.
- Focus on Jesus, not your sin or performance.
Read more about this topic at Self-Giving, Self-Sacrificing Love – Treading Boldly
Click for Full Podcast Transcription
Hello, everybody. Hey, I want to start today with a special announcement. And that is this. Today, the day this podcast released June 15 2021. My first book releases the book is called treading boldly through a pornographic world, a field guide for parents. It’s published by Salem press, I co authored with a good friend of mine, Daniel Weiss, who’s the executive director of the sexual integrity Leadership Summit. And we wrote this book because we know that parents are feeling overwhelmed and intimidated, and ill equipped to walk with their kids to shepherd their kids in this digitally connected, sexually saturated culture. And at the same time, we know that parents are incredibly powerful influencers in their kids lives. And so in this book, we encourage and equip parents to really walk alongside their kids and to help them avoid some major pitfalls that parents fall into in this age, but to help cast a better vision and a better future for their kids. So check it out today, you can, you can find out more about it at treading boldly.com. You can also just purchase the book on Amazon or Christian book distributors or indie books, or wherever you buy your books. It’s treading boldly through a pornographic world by Daniel Weiss and Josh Glazer, we’d love you to buy a copy for yourself or your parents, mom or dad. Or if you have a parent in your life who’s raising kids, it could be a tremendous help to them. Alright, with that said, I want to dive into our topic today. I was thinking recently about how, for me when I was overcoming my unwanted sexual behaviors, I had this pattern of doing well for a time and then being incredibly discouraged when I would have a fall. Or one time especially I’d gone six months without a sexual fall. And then I had a fall. And I was so discouraged. And it was it was doubly discouraging. It was discouraging, on the one hand, because this is behavior I didn’t want to be doing anymore. And I just done it again. But on top of that, because I had abstained for a certain amount of time and then had a sexual fall again, it was doubly discouraging, because I felt like I had to start all over again. And this discouragement especially revealed something inadequate and problematic about my approach to overcoming my unwanted sexual behavior. Now, this also applies to parents. And we actually talk about this very thing in our book, because so many parents set a vision for their kids that goes something like this, don’t have sex until you get married, don’t look at pornography. Those things aren’t what God wants for you, he wants something better for you. And that also reveals a problem, an inadequacy, and how parents are approaching these topics with their kids, and some pastors do the same thing. So I want to reveal to you what the problem is. And then I want to offer you a quick, better way to approach this in your own life, or if you’re a parent, in the lives of your sons and your daughters, and it will make a tremendous difference for you. Alright, here’s the problem. The problem is, it’s casting a vision that looks backwards, it’s casting a vision that looks backwards, it’s a negatively focused vision, that actually is just saying to move away from something rather than to move towards something. So for the person who’s struggling him or herself with unwanted sexual behavior, counting days, or weeks or months, since you act it out, is in a way, always looking back to the last time you acted out. It’s trying to get distance from that. And let me ask you a question. If you were trying to escape from something dangerous, and you were in your car, or running or riding your bike, and you kept looking back, that’s where your focus was, as you’re trying to get away. How successful would you be not very successful, you’re looking the wrong way, you’re looking the wrong way. At best, you’re gonna be swerving all over the place, you won’t be going as directly where you want to go. If you’re a mom or dad, and you’re trying to raise your kids, and the message they’re primarily hearing from you is that you should abstain from sex until you get married. And then marriage is going to be great. And there are all sorts of issues with that anyway. But really, I think most has it parents do that they’re not talking about what marriage is for, or what or why virginity matters in marriage. They’re primarily talking about why sex ruins marriage or messes with marriage or why it will degrade a marriage or hurt a marriage a future marriage. So in other words, it’s just a it’s kind of an inverted way of still looking backwards. It’s it’s, it’s telling your kids don’t go there and then just pointing at their. And this I would suggest to you is actually a tactic of the enemy is what it’s what the serpent did in the garden. When he really threw his conniving way got Adam and Eve focused on that which was not permitted for them the one tree that was not permitted. But we also see it in this way. When Jesus herbs or when Paul tells us in Romans that we’re seeing increases grace increases all the more he is he is spelling out the gospel for us not in that one verse, but he’s in that whole passage in the whole section. He’s spelling out the gospel for us. And in the midst of it, he says we’re sitting creases, Grace increases all the more And so here’s my question to you is what I described about the person who’s counting days or weeks or months, or about the parent who’s saying, hey, it’s really important for you to abstain from sex till you get married and you don’t want to be a virgin, you get married, because otherwise, you know, the sexual experience is going to mess with your marriage. does that fit with the idea of where sin increases, Grace increases all the more. It doesn’t, it doesn’t. And so I’m just suggesting to you there that it reveals that those two methodologies, that approach of kind of looking in the rear view mirror, trying to stay away from something is not gospel centered. It’s actually sin centered. And it’s actually harder, or I’m sorry, it’s easier to become like that what you’re focusing on. So you don’t want to be focusing on sand, you want to be focusing on something else. So here’s the other vision that I would suggest to you is a better vision, either for yourself if you’re overcoming these things, or if you’re a parent, trying to cast this vision for your kids. And keeping this vision in front of you, you and your kids all along. The vision is simply this. We want to become men and women who love like Jesus laws. We want to become men and women who love like Jesus loves. So again, let’s talk to the parents for a second. Instead of teaching our kids to remain virgins till they get married, we’ll talk about like, Let’s become people who love like Jesus. That’s what our goal is. And that includes what we do with our bodies and what we do with our sexuality, what we do with our eyes, where we look how we treat people, whether the people are on a screen or in person, when a love like Jesus loves, if you yourself are wrestling with unwanted sexual behavior, you want to love like Jesus, you don’t want to use people anymore. You don’t want to lust after people and treat them selfishly, whether they’re on screen or in person. Now you want to love like Jesus loves. And and I’m going to talk in a minute about about how we know how Jesus loves. But this is just a much better goal. It’s a robust goal. So here are four reasons I think that goal is much, much better, then then the idea of just abstaining or making making absence or goal. Whether we’re, you know, in whatever position we’re in, for reasons number one, the starting point is wherever you are. And this means whether this is day one for you on this journey, whether you’re a kid who’s really little, whether you’re a kid who’s in your teens, whether you’re the parent of kids who are little or parents who are kids, their teens, we all start in the same place. Whether you have been sober from sexual sin for 20 years or one hour. The starting point is where you are you become somebody who loves like Jesus, where do you begin? Today, right here right now. That’s the starting point. And it always moves with you, no matter if you go forward or backwards. Second, and this is related, these are already that related, actually. The second is, falls or setbacks are not failure. falls or setbacks are not failure to that goal. They’re just opportunities to grow. They’re not starting over. So that vision I had of you know, okay, I went six months without acting out, and then I just act it out. Now I’m in day one again, know, if my goal is to love like Jesus, then after a sexual fall, the question becomes, well, how does a person who loves like Jesus loves act after a fall act after a sexual fall. And so for example, that might include if you’re married, and you have a sexual fall, then you come clean with your spouse, you let them know the truth, and you seek to make it right. If you’ve acted out with another person. you apologize to them, you make it right, that’s what a person who loves like Jesus loves. So you can move forward, wherever you are, if if you’ve been lusting after images on your computer. How do you love people on your computer like Jesus loves? Well, maybe it means getting some filtering software or, or making some decisions about how you’re going to up you know, organize your day so that you’re more likely not to mistreat people online, like you just have. Those are just examples, but you want to grow like love like Jesus does. And the Fall is not a setback, it’s an opportunity to learn, okay, well, I didn’t do that. Well, there. How can I do better tomorrow? If you are a parent, that also that I mean, this is so important, if you’re a parent, having that as the goal means that if your kid is is already lost their virginity, that if they’re not, they’re not spoiled, it’s not over the journeys not done. We’ve talked to so many adults who had that message remain virgin till you’re married, who didn’t remain virgin as a kid. And part of what they feel is okay, now I’m tainted goods, I already messed up, I already can’t give myself as a virgin to my spouse. And I heard that was the worst thing. And so I might as well just keep having sex because at least then I feel some love and some pleasure, because I certainly don’t feel that when I think about my future. Those kids need a better vision, they need a vision that can that is more robust than how they do sexually, in one given moment, or in one given season of their life, to become the person who loves like Jesus loves fall and setbacks are opportunities to grow. Third, third, that focus is on what you’re for, not what you’re against. And I’ve already talked about why that’s so important because we end up moving towards that which we focus on. So this goal, becoming a A woman who loves like Jesus is a focus for something not against something. Yes, underneath that there are subcategories, like don’t look at pornography, wait until marriage to have sex. Those are subcategories of becoming people who love like Jesus, including loving people like Jesus in our bodies and in our sexuality. fourth reason this is a bigger goal, a bigger medical is it keeps our eye This is related to that last one. What are we for? We’re for becoming like Jesus in the way that we love. Well, what’s the best way to do that? The best way to do that is to focus on Jesus to focus on Jesus. We’re not focusing on our sin. We’re not focusing on our performance, we are focused on Jesus. And I mean that in two ways, how do we focus on Jesus two ways. One, we become a student of Jesus. So we study scripture, we pay attention to Scripture, we meditate on scripture, we look for what loving look like to Jesus, read the passion narratives. The all the gospel writers spend a considerable amount of time focusing on the gospel areas mark the shortest gospel spends half of its book, Jesus talking about his upcoming suffering and death. And then we walk through his crucifixion. Why do we focus on his crucifixion, his passion, because Jesus is giving himself his body, his very body, his life, to love others. There’s so much we learn about loving from Jesus. So we focus on Jesus in the scriptures. But the other place we focus on Jesus, we also focus on Jesus and how he is looking at us. We fix our eyes, on the eyes of Jesus, looking at us, we fix our eyes, on the eyes of Jesus, the loving, passionate eyes of Jesus, looking on us. So are you a young kid? Are you parenting a young kid and you want to help them to learn to like love like Jesus loves? then teach them how Jesus looks on them with love? Are you parenting, an older kid who’s really messed some things up? Who’s really made some horrible mistakes? Then you talk with them and pray for them. They would experience the loving look of Jesus looking upon them. He knows what they’ve done, and he looks on them with eyes of love. I think hear of the woman at the well, the Samaritan woman at the well. Jesus didn’t condemn her. For the five husbands she had, for whatever reason she had five husbands. He didn’t condemn her. For the man that she was now living with who was not her husband. He talked to her lovingly and humbly. And she found in him I’d suggest she found in him to match it always been looking for and it changed her life and changed her villages life. And if you yourself are wrestling with unwanted sexual behavior, then there’s no better place for you to go than to the cross of Jesus to let Jesus look on you with his eyes of love. He loves you. He loves you. He loves you. I met a man last week, the beautiful testimony he said, You know, I’ve wrestled with with pornography and sexual sin and all sorts of stuff for so long. And my life really started turn around, it really started to change. When I committed myself to every day, sitting with Jesus, and looking at him, looking at me, sitting with Jesus and looking at him looking at me in that beautiful. Hey, friends, I hope this encourages you. We want to move towards becoming men and women who love like Jesus loves. And once again, if you are a parent, or you know a parent who could benefit, I highly encourage you to pick up a copy of my new book that I wrote with Daniel Weiss, treading boldly through a pornographic world, a field guide for parents, I think you’ll be blessed. So Jesus, would you open our eyes to see your eyes looking lovingly at us? And for parents listening, Lord, would you help us and would you open our kids eyes to see you looking lovingly on them all or that we might be filled up with your love to overflowing and love others as the men and women we are? We pray these things now in Jesus name, Amen.
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