The news about what’s happening in the world today is dire.
According to humantrafficking.org, trafficking is a 32 billion dollar business as you read this article. “Modern day slavery is bested only by the illegal drug trade for profitability,” but very little money and political will is being spent to combat trafficking. “Transnational organized crime groups are adding humans to their product lists,” Mira Sorvina, special ambassador, reported to a United Nations assembly. “Satellites reveal the same routes moving them as arms and drugs.” It is estimated that nearly two and a half million people are enslaved around the world today.
An approximate 80% of the victims are women.
Sunday night, one of the pastors at church broached an incredibly difficult topic: pornography. He gave us the numbers … first exposure averages around age 12. 68% of young adult men are regularly viewing it (defined as once a week). When a researcher attempted a study which was to survey young adult men who were not involved in usage, the study had to be abandoned because he literally couldn’t find anyone to be part of the group. While usage increases dopamine (the natural reward-chemical made by the brain) it also creates desensitization, requiring more stimulation to trigger the same release every time. Usage of pornography appears to literally rewire the brain, causing lack of motivation, social anxiety, depression, and triggering a host of social problems including its obviously detrimental affect on marriage (find more information at fightthenewdrug.)
When I hear stories and statistics like this, one thing becomes clear: men in our society are under attack.
And here’s why men being under attack matters to me, as a woman: I’m married to one, and I have six sons.
God created man in His own image– with a huge capacity to create and conquer, to provide and protect. But the enemy is after all of you, and the frightening thing is that it looks like he’s winning in far too many cases.
Ladies and gentlemen, we all need to engage in the battle for what truly matters: the image of God in our very beings. If the enemy is after men, he’s after all of us.
The issues mentioned earlier are linked, obviously. And the shocking truth I’ve learned about trafficking is this: its main “supplier” is homelessness. A child/teen/young adult who runs away from home is most likely going to be approached by someone interested in trafficking them within the first 48 hours on the street. Your family is your children’s best defense against every ill in society. Period.
If you’re a parent, you’ve got to make sure you’re talking to your children about what’s important. Don’t just check their grades and make sure they’ve brushed their teeth and send them to Sunday School or youth group and pat yourself on the back. The battle is too heated for that. Your children are under direct attack; it’s not time for passivity.
Talk to them face to face and often. Talk about the value of all people, about privacy, about men’s responsibility to protect women, about women’s responsibility to respect themselves and one another. And listen. Ask them what they’re struggling with and try not to make a face when they answer you truthfully.
If you’re married, you’ve got to make sure you’re staying engaged with your spouse. Put your personal needs aside and make time to prioritize those of your spouse. Go against the current of culture–turn off your cell phone. Don’t take all the overtime you’re offered. Take a walk together. Go to counseling if you need it. Don’t. Give. Up.
Make everyone’s social media use transparent. Check each others’ texts occasionally. Keep up with everyone’s social media accounts. Install internet filters in your home.
Most of all, carefully watch over the hearts of each precious person in your family. Be a trusted advisor and friend and source of information and help.
The family is under attack. But the God of angel armies is on our side. While the world may be dark …
“We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed” 2 Corinthians 4:8-9.