“Let your ‘yes’ mean ‘yes,’ and your ‘no’ mean ‘no.’ Anything more is from the evil one.” (Matthew 5:37)
It’s not difficult to see that our corruptive understanding and view of sexuality stems from what seems to be a deliberate attempt to manipulate the language used to talk about it. Terms such as “premarital” or “extramarital relations” have replaced the words fornication and adultery. People want to lessen the moral “weight” and “baggage” that often accompanies a freely chosen promiscuous lifestyle. And there are a lot of people enlarging their pocket books from the lie they’ve sold teens who fall into the trap of believing it. “Don’t worry, everyone else is doing it… and besides, contraception is the safe way to go, without any consequences… oh, by the way – if it happens not to work, you can always have an abortion and no one has to know about it…”
Our challenge is to re-evaluate the language used to talk about sexuality and show that a self-centered view of it goes against both the human person and the true nature of love. Sexuality affects masculinity, femininity, human dignity, and our role as social beings, so the language we use should take into account all these aspects.
There are two sides to all this. It’s not enough to simply say that a young person cannot have sexual relations before marriage. It’s also not correct to give teens the license to be “sexually active without consequences” because that’s a lie. Young people must be taught to think intelligently and make free, responsible choices based on the knowledge of who they are as persons. It’s about living in reality and knowing who we are as persons, but more importantly as children of the God who loves us unconditionally and who wants what’s best for us.
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