And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. (Rom 5:3-6)

Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord GOD of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel. (Psalm 69:6)

Monday, February 11, 2013

Parents Must Become Culturally Relevant


One of  the difficult tasks today among so many distractions is to stay up on culture.  Because we are Christ's ambassadors, as evidenced in Paul's Mars Hill sermon, we need to be informed, not influenced, on culturally relevant topics.  In my younger days I was a cultural guru. This simply was due to the fact that I was influenced by my friends.  The people I associated with were of the world and the world was our oyster.  We thrived on MTV, the latest films, and whatever bacchanalia that came our way.  I look at many teens that I know know and am crushed to see that they are falling into the same traps as I once did.  Most adults today struggle with their past decisions and the reciprocating circumstances they have sewn for themselves.  Thus, I plan on using this forum to send you news and information to help you in staying culturally relevant.  The whole purpose of this agenda is to give you insights in a simple manner that in turn you can accurately converse with your kids and society all in a hopes to present God's ways being higher than man's ways.

The article below is all about the goals of the youth generation.  Not all kids are following these trends, but rest assured their direct peers are.  There are very very few people today who come through the teen years without some resonating influence from a sinful society.  However, even the good kids can be influenced by these very same influences.  Just recently my wife and I dealt with "a good kid" who has been living a lie.  Dating behind the parents back, this person has now found themselves in a time where their faith is tested and they will need to come clean, all while paying a high price.  Mind you, Satan is always going after your kids and just because they are in church isn't enough.  Thus I believe that there is a great need to post more later on biblical parenting

What biblical words would I share with the article below, Proverbs 7 comes to mind.  Most teens have little self control.  Few lack logical sense, almost al have some niche i nthier armor that allows pride to be their weakness.  For the most part, many adults remain lifelong slaves to these very weaknesses.  But God is our strength.  SO with a Bible in one hand, and this article in the other, take time to be discerning and create a plan for preserving the souls of your children.

Teenage quest for fame produces scary consequences

, Published: February 4

We got freaked out by kids sexting.
We were shocked when some high school football players ordered prostitutes 
with their smartphones.
And now, some ambitious members of Generation Text have taken the sex/technology nexus to a new low by producing and distributing teen porn
 in Northern Virginia.
Police locked up three boys — two 16-year-olds and a 15-year-old — from West Springfield High School last month for their alleged attempts at becoming the Mitchell Brothers 2.0 — porn kings of the burbs.
The boys made the sex videos with at least six teenage girls from their own school and two neighboring high schools. The boys, all sophomores, have been charged with possession and distribution of child pornography.
This is a story about teen sex and underage drinking. As every parent knows, these have long been part of the perils of adolescence. But the twist here is the camera lens. Or, more likely, the cellphone lens.
It’s a whole new level of degradation and compromised values when videotaping and distribution via send button are factored in.
This is the generation that has been born, fed, diapered and directed on camera. While my generation’s childhood memories come down to a shelf of photo albums or a cardboard box of faded Polaroids, Generation Y has been documented since birth with thousands upon thousands of digital images. They are the real, live “Truman Show.”
And growing up in front of a camera has planted the seeds of some seriously scary consequences.
What do you think kids want most in life today? Money? Marriage? Adventure? A cool job? Spiritual fulfillment? Nope.
“Quantitative analysis revealed that fame was the number one value, selected as the most important value for participants’ future goals,” according to a study
 done by psychology professors at the University of California at Los Angeles.
In other words, what kids want most is to be as famous as Beyonce or Justin Bieber, even if they can’t sing.
According to a similar UCLA study
, the top five values emphasized in television shows popular with children in 2007 were fame, achievement, popularity, image and financial success.
In 1997, the top five were community feeling, benevolence (being kind and helping others), image, tradition and self-acceptance. In 2007, benevolence dropped to the 12th spot and community feeling fell to 11th.
This is echoed in studies done by psychologists
 and pollsters
 across the country.
It can be summed up in that Mercedes-Benz Super Bowl commercial, where geeky boy makes the cover of Vanity Fair, gets a date with Kate Upton, is mobbed by screaming fans and pursued by paparazzi, all because he drove that car. Fame — that’s all anyone wants, right?
And what better way for boys to get famous on campus than by making sex tapes?
This is, after all, the Look At Me Generation. They grew up on Facebook and Twitter, far more hip to the potential of social networks and ablaze on them long before their parents could even figure out how to rotate their profile pictures so they weren’t perpetually headstanding.
We had “Three’s Company,” they had “Survivor.” Our parents watched “Beverly Hillbillies,” Generation Texters had “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.” Swamp People, Gypsy Sisters, Honey Boo Boo — it’s a nation of ordinary people who can get famous with no talent, no skill, no achievement. All it takes is exposure — the more the better, apparently.
Exhibit A of this ethos is Snooki. Her own father is flummoxed by her fame. At one of his daughter’s events, Andy Polizzi said he wanted to ask her fans: “What is it that draws you to my daughter? Be honest.’ Because it’s very hard for me to see what it is. She don’t sing. She don’t dance. I don’t want to say she don’t have talent,” he told the New York Times in a 2010 interview
Add the hunger for fame at any price to another trend new to this generation — the widespread and rampant availability of online porn — and it’s a wonder more kids aren’t making sex tapes. Or maybe they are, and we just don’t know about it.
For parents — who may have thought that talks with their kids and a good Net Nanny on the home computer is enough — controlling the flow of online porn on phones, tablets or laptops is daunting.
The Junior Pornographers made an impact. It appears they are famous, in their minuscule world.
“Pretty epic. These kids will be legendary at West Springfield for years to come,” a commenter with the handle “Jesus Phreak” wrote on the raw and sometimes nasty
 Fairfax Underground, a Web site with forums that make The Washington Post’s comments section look like civil discourse.
The forum dissecting the porn arrests was on fire last week. Someone identified as “durden” made a pretty astute observation about the social media life of high-schoolers today and what it means.
“Twitter is necessary to fit in and thus have at least some sense of being important/famous even if only with a circle of losers,” durden wrote. “If you aren’t important you aren’t alive. Everyone trades giving others attention to get some in return. It’s a big circle of trade to not sink into obscurity. Normal life is no life at all in today’s value system. What we are seeing today is going to be tame come 10 yrs from now.”
As far as the girls go?
This one doesn’t change with time. The boys might become micro-famous for a while. But for the girls, infamy is all that awaits them.

Follow me on Twitter at @petulad
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