by Chris Spradlin
5. The “10:13 Principle”
“The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.” —1 Corinthians 10:13
I don’t believe there’s a stronger, more inspiring verse in the whole Bible, especially for young men. Dads should have their sons commit every single word of this verse to memory—and then follow up by teaching them in practical ways how to stand on, trust in, and believe these words. Here are what I consider to be the top life-changing promises for your son from this verse:
- You are not alone! Other boys just like you (including your friends!) are struggling with lust too.
- You’ll never face a temptation that is greater than you can handle.
- God always provides a way out.
4. Say “No” to Masturbation
Um…did he just say the dreaded “M” word?!? You bet I did. Look, I know this can be a really controversial subject. And you can find strong arguments on both sides of this issue. But I am here to tell you that masturbation can (and does) lead a young boy down a dark path toward a secretive, almost inevitable, out-of-control addiction. Here’s the truth: I myself struggled with this as a child—which fed directly into an ongoing struggle with it during my young adult years. It will destroy your kids’ lives! Now, don’t shame your boys, threaten them, or act like the Big M is the unpardonable sin. But don’t ignore it, either! There is middle ground. Show your boys love and grace. Maintain honest, open communication with them that gives you the rapport to have authentic, heart-deep conversations about this topic. Make your talk times a safe place where your boys are free to fail, ask questions, and wrestle with difficult, conflicted emotions.
3. “Bounce” Your Eyes
“Bouncing” your eyes is a deceptively simple technique that I learned from Arterburn and Stoeker’s great book, Every Man’s Battle. (They have a newer version, too, directed specifically at younger men.) Here’s how this works: If you’re at the pool and you see a toned, barely-covered booty, you simply “bounce” your eyes away from her. When you’re standing in the lunch line at school, and some girl’s wearing a strappy number designed specifically to showcase the shape, style, and color of her bra, you “bounce” your eyes somewhere else. “Let’s see… How many ceiling tiles are in this room, anyway…?” Even if you’re at church—yes, it even happens there, sad to say!—and some lady has her “girls” out on display, “bounce” your eyes.
Dads, I can’t encourage you enough to teach your boys this at a young age. I promise it will pay dividends. I’d even recommend you check out the books Every Young Man’s Battle and Every Young Woman’s Battle. Your kids are worth protecting!
2. That Girl Has a Dad
When you catch your son scoping out a young lady, here’s the gist of the conversation you need to initiate with him (in an appropriate setting): “So, son… You know that girl you were just lusting after earlier?” (Pause for dramatic effect.) “Well, that girl has a dad. His name is Jesus.” While moms can do this too if it’s necessary, I’ve generally found it to be more effective when dads take the lead on this one. Dads, you need to teach your boys to honor the daughters of God—instead of lusting after the daughters of God. One of these things pleases and brings honor to Him. The other one does not.
And finally, the single most important lesson you can teach your son about managing lust:
1. Live It Out
Dads, you can’t tell your son to live a life that you’re not willing to live yourself. There’s an ugly word we have for that: Hypocrisy. You know how you can’t stand it when you see the hypocrisy in other people? What makes you think your kids can’t see it in you? Now, if you’ve been struggling with lust, masturbation, or pornography, or if you’re a sex addict, you need to know: You’re not alone! Contact me at chris [at] epicparent.tv. I’d be honored to connect you with resources and services that will help you overcome those weaknesses in your life once and for all. Now is the time. This is your moment. Don’t put it off any longer. And stop lying to yourself that you’ll stop on your own eventually. Let’s be honest: Has that worked for you yet? Then get real and get help now. This is your chance to change history. You can reverse the curse for your family!
Get the E-book
Read more in Chris Spradlin’s new e-book, Sex, Lust, & XXX: Fighting for Your Kids’ Purity in a Sex Saturated World.