Some time ago I received a lot of comments on this blog and on another forum when I posed the question about modesty in dress. About fifty percent of the respondents felt it was okay for women, and men, to wear shorts to church and some of the other fifty percent said they would not wear shorts to church, but they didn't see anything wrong with it. Now I come to another controversial topic which someone else started, and which I felt that as a Christian parent and grandparent I should get involved in. The question was, "Should YA (young adult) books contain profanity?"
I jumped right in with a vehement NO! Immediately, someone responded that there was nothing wrong with kids reading profanity as it was necessary to portray the character in the book. In other words she was saying, that if there was no profanity, the character would not be realistic because kids use profanity nowadays. Well, maybe I'm out of touch with today's kids, but the kids I know do not use profanity. At least, not in my presence. And I've never heard any of my friends complain that their teens use profanity. However, I'll admit that kids may use foul language when they are with their friends, just to be accepted. But if they don't use that kind of language in the presence of adults, then they recognize that it is wrong and do not need books that make it seem like it's the norm.
The person in her response went on to say that if kids read books that contain profanity it's okay, because AT LEAST THEY ARE READING! My. my, my. So, according to that writer, we should allow our kids to read anything as long as they READ. I wonder if she would allow her kids to gorge themselves on hamburgers, fries and candy as long as they were eating. Doesn't she know that in the same way we take care to nourish our bodies with the right nutrients, in the same way we ought to nourish our minds? Doesn't she realize that God will hold us accountable for what we feed our children- physically, intellectually and spiritually? Doesn't she know that children's minds are like sponges, ready to soak up whatever is put into them? It's the reason we have ratings for movies and television shows and we put blocks on some internet sites. We, as adults, have a responsibility to protect our children's minds as much, or maybe even more than we protect their bodies. We need to raise them up in the fear and admonition of the Lord.
In Matthew 19 : 14 Jesus said, "Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven. " We bring our children to the Lord by our example. Not just by taking them to church, but in the way we live our daily lives. The way we speak, the books we read, the shows we watch. We are our children's biggest role models, and if we have books hidden under our mattress, they, too, are going to read books that they have to hide under their mattress. If we cuss in front of them, they will cuss in front of them. The Bible says, "But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation" (1 Peter 1 : 15). Parents, let us be aware!