Sunday, September 28, 2008

Sex. Yes, that's right.

The entire month of September, Clint and I have been teaching a class on Sex and Dating.  It's cleverly called Sex. Dating. by Haley and Michael DiMarco- whom I LOVE.  I have every single one of Haley's books.  She's a youth ministry hero.  Her and David Fraize (who like totally knows who I am!  By name!).

Anyway, we finished the curriculum last Sunday, but Clint and I felt like we needed to cover some more stuff.  Namely boundaries in dating.

Now this is tough stuff.  This is stuff that single 20 and 30 year olds can have a hard time talking about.  This is stuff that parents struggle with talking to their kids about.  Because nobody wants to talk about "how far is too far."  Either because they are embarrassed or they don't want to admit that they're going to far.  Most books I've read on the subject skirt around the issue.  The Bible doesn't spell it out.  The Bible says a lot about lust, but not necessarily about whether touching a girl's breast before they're married is right or wrong.

So today, we split the junior high and high school students.  I had high school first and Clint had junior high.  I had 9 chairs sitting at the front of the room.  I pulled out a posterboard that said "Hugging" on it.  I explained that I needed someone to sit and hold the posterboard.  I then explained that we were going to play the "least intimate" to "most intimate" game.  "Hugging" was the least intimate.  Taylor immediately raised her hand and she sat down holding "Hugging."  Bekah jumped up and said "I want the next one!  I don't want to hold anything awkward!"  Much to her dismay, I handed her a posterboard that said "Sexual Intercourse" and told her to sit on the last chair on the other side of the room.  At this point, I told the rest of the class that they had to fill in the 7 chairs with other physical things that lead up to sex.  This is what the high school list looked like:
-Holding Hands
-Kissing with more than your lips (this was as close to "kissing with your tongue" as I could get them)
-Touching in inappropriate areas
-"I'll show you mine, if you show me yours"
-Mutual Masturbation
-Oral Sex
-Sexual Intercourse

The ones that are italicized are ones that eventually I had to write down because they were kind of skirting around the issue.  Then I split them into groups and they had to decide where they thought the line was.  I was pleased that everyone stayed around the "kissing" line.  The guy group decided that you shouldn't go any further than "kissing with more than your lips."  And both girl groups said that you shouldn't go any further than plain "kissing."

Then they prayed over their boundaries and in came the junior high group.

Sweet junior high kids.  So sweet.  So naive.

This is the list they came up with:
-Holding Hands
-Sitting on boy's lap (which I SO appreciated- thank you Michele for saying that!)
-Taking a nap together
-Touching "bathing suit" areas
-Taking off clothes
-Mutual Masturbation
-Oral Sex
-Sexual Intercourse

A good chunk of my junior high kids didn't know what masturbation or oral sex were.  I encouraged them to talk to their parents about it.  The few who did, were shocked when I flipped over the posterboardss to show what they said.  

The junior high kids' conversations in their small groups was awesome.  They talked about how they didn't think that they were old enough yet to kiss.  They didn't even know if they were old enough to hold hands.  One sweet girl said she still thought boys had cooties.  Most agreed that you shouldn't go past kissing.

So all of this talk about sex and uncomfortable words to say HOW PROUD I AM OF MY TEENAGERS.  Sure there was giggling.  Sure there was a lot of shock (one mom, when I turned the "Mutual Masturbation" posterboard around in the high school class was so shocked she gasped loudly and covered her face with her hands- so the shock wasn't limited to the teens).  BUT THEY DIDN'T SHY AWAY FROM CONVERSATION.  They discussed it maturely and respectfully.  They answered questions and asked questions and talked in their small group. The parents in the room (and parents have been encouraged to come to every class so there were at least 20 parents in the class) were having open discussions about sex with their teens.  And then we bathed the whole thing in prayer at the end.  IT WAS GREAT!

After church, I was at lunch with some teens and their parents.  I asked the teens what they thought about class.  And by far, my favorite response was from a sweet 7th grader who said "I liked that everything was out in the open.  Nothing was secretive."

Nuf said.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

It's beginning to feel a lot like a REAL September

-First off, I would like to say, that it was the loveliest night tonight.  I sat out on the Barker's back porch with Dan and Karen for about 45 minutes just enjoying the cool air.  It was so chilly, I had to run upstairs and grab a sweatshirt!  It's beginning to feel a lot like September... everywhere you go!

-I'm ready for fall!  I'm ready to move into my new apartment, set it up all cute, and set out Thanksgiving and fall decorations (my Mimi taught me right!).  I'm ready for fires (everyone knows how much I ADORE fires!) and wassail and candles!

-Speaking of my Mimi, check out this picture of the two of us-
Basically, she's the best Mimi of ALL TIME.  This is the two of us with the cake we made together the last time I was in Houston (HUGE thanks to Michele for teaching me how to make this delicious cake!!!!).  If you look closely, Mimi is stealing a lick from the side, with her finger!  Seriously, BEST MIMI EVER!!

-And if you could, please keep Mimi and Popi in your prayers.  Hurricane Ike totally destroyed their house.  It's going to be a long road of rebuilding and repairing.  Praise the Lord nobody was hurt.  However, many things (sentimental and family heirlooms) were lost.  So please pray for them and everyone who was affected by Ike.

-We had a Chili Cook-Off today at church and guess what!?  I won second place!  I was literally FLOORED.  I didn't know how to make chili before yesterday, and I found a recipe in my Star Wars Cookbook (I'm not even kidding) and decided to try it!  It was way easy.  I couldn't believe it when Clint said my name...

-I added a couple of blogs to my "Blogs I Love" section- Michele and Wezie two of my fantastic youth group moms!  Check them out!  

-I started a small group in our church.  One with people (sort of) my age.  I'm really excited about it.  It was a very eclectic group tonight, but everyone seemed to have a pretty good time.  There are 6 of us right now.  I'm praying that we will all become good friends and learn more about the Word and the Lord.

-I listen to Harry Potter podcasts.  Judge away.

-Speaking of HP, Ash and Allison (both who are linked on the left!) and I are all re-reading series!  It's been a lot of fun so far!  I love that Ashley and Allison have only met once, but are becoming fast friends because of HP!

-The three of us all need to plan a vacay to Orlando in early 2010 to see the Harry Potter theme park.  Like for-reals.

-I've been watching football the past week.  It reminds me of fall.  I love it!

-Nothing gives me greater joy than the Lord and the friends he provides for me.  I can't tell you how blessed I am in Him.  I can't thank or praise Him enough!

Thursday, September 04, 2008

My New Apartment!

Check out my new apartment! It is everything I wanted and so close to the church! I move in the 31st of October! HOORAY!