I just spoke for almost 12,000 Christian high school students this past month, and numerous times I heard the same thing…

“I’ve been waiting for someone to tell me this,” said a young girl regarding her immoral sexual activity with her boyfriend.

“You’ve got to be kidding me,” I said to myself each time I heard it.  But I’ve been hearing this for the past four years since returning to youth work, not just at last month’s convention. 

Many young American women, even and especially those who call themselves Christian, are sexually active. Apparently they are waiting for someone to get right into their faces and say, “Cut it out.  This is wrong for you, a Christian, to be having sex with your boyfriend—or getting as close to having sex as possible.  I don’t even care if you’re engaged.  I don’t care if he says it will make your relationship more secure.  You know the right thing to do, don’t you?  So do it.” 

Why don’t young Christian women “do the right thing?”

I think there are a variety of reasons.  Let me suggest a few:

1. Almost everywhere our young generations turns—television shows, the block-buster movies, or the majority of music to which they listen—the messages they hear about love and/or sex encourages them to fantasize or explore intimacy outside of marriage

Even though immoral sexual activity is the cultural “norm,” what can you—a parent, grandparent, Youthworker, friend, co-worker or family member say or do?  Say something often—make comments about the latest shows and give a review based on biblical principles.  Don’t give your opinion or your church’s viewpoint.  Direct students to the Word of God and His thoughts on the “hot” issues that you see being disregarded in their culture. 

2. Christian and/or community leaders are absolutely guilty of sending young men and women mixed messages—we’ve let them down. Don’t try to hide or laugh at or excuse the public melt downs.  Discuss them.

Whether it is a politician or a pastoral leader, about 50% of those who hold an office of authority have “blown up” their marriages with infidelity or have allowed personal moral failure to create a general sense of insecurity and distrust in the institution of marriage.  This has made the call of God to be sexually pure all the days of your life—whether you are single or married—a joke. 

What can you and I do?  Tell students and young adults in your life—whether you have influence with one or ten or hundreds of them--that God’s standards are non-negotiable.  Show them where they are found in the Bible—and explain to them that over time these principles have not changed even if some fail to follow them to the pain and detriment of many. Remind them that God’s standards for sexual purity and/or marriage are not necessarily the easy way to live ones life, nor do they make you popular with others, but they will honor God.  And that is an incredibly motivating reason for obeying them.  (II Timothy 2:21)

3. Would you believe me if I told that young girls have been raped and/or seduced by those who have been employed by churches?  Well, they have—it’s true.  And it has taken them years to get over the intrusion and violation. But at least they are still alive. Some young women have not come home alive after going off with boys or young men or even older men they naively trusted.

What can we do? Tell our girls and young women that when others tell you something is “okay” or “right,” no matter who they are, you must not simply follow what they say. You must seek out the Word of God for His viewpoint.  You must sense a “green light” in your spirit that His Holy Spirit gives to you—a peace that passes understanding.  A great phrase to keep handy in one's life should be, “When in doubt, don’t.”  Suggest that they be willing to ask others in authority over them, those they trust, what they think of an invitation or suggestion or comment.  (If they are ashamed to talk to someone about an invitation, that in itself is a “red flag” warning!)