Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Truth or Consequences

According to Google, Truth or Consequences was a game show that aired on CBS and NBC from July 5, 1950 through 1974. "Contestants on the show were asked silly, trick questions. If they answered incorrectly, or failed to come up with any answer in a short time, Beulah the Buzzer went off. The emcee then told them that since they had failed to tell the truth, they would have to pay the consequences. Consequences consisted of elaborate stunts, some done in the studio and others done outside . . . "


You get the picture. The worst consequences resulted in embarrassment, but no one ever got hurt. And often, a long lost loved one or some other special person showed up as part of the consequence, warming the audience's hearts and making it all worth while for the contestants.


Too bad life isn't like that, eh? Truth or Consequences. On the one hand we have God's truth, and on the other hand, all sorts of voices screaming lies. Through TV shows, magazines, movies, Internet sites, peers . . . a constant stream of false information often drowns out God's simple truth. And then there are the consequences. When we believe and act on lies, consequences can be devastating.


Not long ago I spoke to a group of teens about purity. We examined lies we often hear and held them up to the truth. Here are a few we discussed:


Lie: You have to experiment with sex to learn about it.
Truth: God created sex for marriage; you have your whole married life to "practice" and discover the wonders of sex.


Lie: Having sex builds intimacy.
Truth: A healthy sex life is a result--not the cause--of intimacy. The key ingredient to intimacy is trust, and one of the best ways to build trust is to show respect and restraint in physical relationships before marriage.


Lie: Purity is "old-fashioned."
Truth: Purity is God's best. He commands it, because He loves us and wants us to experience sex as He created it, which is far more wonderful, powerful, and passionate than any Hollywood version. (See Song of Solomon)


Lie: Having a boyfriend/girlfriend proves my worth and makes me fit in.
Truth: Our worth comes from the Lord. Read Psalm 139. God knows the plans He has for us. (Jeremiah 29:11) God sees the whole story of our lives, and He wants us to have a "big picture" attitude--to make choices now that will help us achieve His plans for our future lives. He wants us to trust His wisdom. It hurts to feel left out when "everybody else is doing it," but there's so much more to look forward to if we avoid pitfalls associated with pre-marital sex.


Lie: I've already had sex, so it's too late. I might as well keep having it.
Truth: It's never too late to repent of sin. Any sin. When we confess our failures to God, we receive His forgiveness. Then we can "go and sin no more." God doesn't condemn us, but He does expect us to change.


I share these with you, because I wish someone had shared them with me before I started dating. Maybe you think you'll never find someone who will love you the way God intended. Maybe you think you should just settle for "good enough."


Don't settle. If you haven't already, start praying for the person God will bring into your life. Nothing is too difficult for Him. And while you're at it, ask Him to make you the kind of person someone else is praying to find.


Truth has consequences, too. When we choose it, we choose life.

1 comment:

Craig said...

Jeanne:

I recommend to you Lauren Winner's book Real Sex--The Naked Truth About Chastity. It was a good read and lined up with your post in several ways.

Keep on,

Craig.