It's funny how the repetition of something you're so familiar with, like the Ten Commandments, can strike a new chord in your heart of hearts. As Darin has reviewed them for us over the last several weeks, I've once again been awed by their simplicity and intent for our ultimate good and well-being. When you look at the destruction that can be wrought by disobedience of them, it's easy to see why God thought they were a good idea!
Yesterday, in particular, moved me to tears as I considered the truths of the consequences of marital infidelity, pornography, and premarital sex. From sitcoms to soap operas, characters are engaged in dangerous relationships with no apparent effects. But the truth is, those tales are merely snippets of the whole story. In reality, there are emotions that become scarred, trust that is destroyed, health that is put in jeopardy, and visual images that can never be erased. When Darin mentioned that the average age for a person to view pornographic material was 11, I wasn't shocked. Because, unfortunately, that's how old I was, too. I was innocently riding the bus home from school one afternoon and some kids had a magazine. They were throwing it to one another, and at one point it landed, open, beside me on the seat. I didn't want to see it, had not requested it, and truly freaked out when I realized what it was. One of the kids grabbed it up immediately (and of course threatened me to keep my mouth shut). But, just as I said, that image is still ingrained in my mind, no matter how much I'd like to remove it. At that young age, it had such a profound impact on my psyche, that I even remember exactly where we were on the bus route - that's been 22 years ago.
As a result of that experience, and its scarring effect on me, I've made it a habit that every time I see an "adult" bookstore, I pray a simple prayer: "Lord, please bring your complete destruction upon that place and its contents, and draw the people to yourself." By this, I mean that God alone can obliterate the building and materials inside. He can even work out technicalities with insurance companies so the place can never be rebuilt. And, I'm asking for all the people involved (employees, writers, actors, producers, owners, customers, etc.) to find hope, healing, and the affection and love they crave in the presence of God. Please feel free to join me in this prayer. Maybe together, by the power of the Holy Spirit, we can abolish these garrisons of Satan one by one.
Arriving and First Week
23 minutes ago