what youseeWhen I was a kid, I can remember my mom singing this song…

                “Oh be careful little eyes what you see; oh be careful little eyes what you see

                For the Father up above is looking down below, oh be careful little eyes what you see.” 

Anyone else able to clearly sing along with it?  (it will be stuck in your head now!)

Recently, as I was praying for Human Trafficking, the Lord, in his kindness, reminded me of this song of old.  I was praying specifically for the next generation of men (including my twin 11 year old boys), and asking God to break the cultural trend towards sexual promiscuity.  You see, I want my boys to look at their classmates and want to know their hearts and not just pay attention to their external appearance.

I want them to be careful what their little eyes see.  I don’t want them to have images burned into their minds of cleavage or shorty shorts with more showing than should be, and for those images to form in their minds what is acceptable and how they should view the opposite sex (or for that matter, how the opposite sex should view and interact with them ).  I don’t want them to see men and women touching in magazines in the grocery store checkout, or women (or men for that matter) in various forms of nakedness on the covers.  And I certainly don’t want them to see every young teenager on their “Disney” channel shows chasing after and kissing the opposite sex.  I don’t want their G – rated video games to consist of women warriors in bikini tops that appear to be much too small and show way too much cleavage …as a cartoon character on a video game?  Really?  Call me old fashioned, but I still believe that as parents, we need to help them to understand “Oh be careful little eyes what you see.”

As I prayed into this, I found myself in Proverbs 4:10-17

Listen, my son, accept what I say,
and the years of your life will be many.
11 I instruct you in the way of wisdom
and lead you along straight paths.
12 When you walk, your steps will not be hampered;
when you run, you will not stumble.
13 Hold on to instruction, do not let it go;
guard it well, for it is your life.
14 Do not set foot on the path of the wicked
or walk in the way of evildoers.
15 Avoid it, do not travel on it;
turn from it and go on your way.
16 For they cannot rest until they do evil;
they are robbed of sleep till they make someone stumble.
17 They eat the bread of wickedness
and drink the wine of violence.

As a mom, we all want our kids to walk on the straight path.  I don’t think too many of us give birth to these precious ones and say, I sure hope he turns out to be a rotten person someday.  But it happens.  Our kids are human and they make poor choices.  (As do we!)  How then, can we as parents make an impact?

I don’t know.  To be honest, I really don’t have all the answers.  I am still in the stage of life where I’m trying to figure it out.  But here’s what I do know.  As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.  What does that even mean?

Well, for starters, it will mean hard conversations with our boys (and girl) about what is appropriate dress and appropriate behavior towards the opposite sex.  Where should our eyes wander, and where should they not wander.  How do we deal with the “feelings” that present themselves during our “tween” and teenage years?  Why is it important as a man of God to save yourself for marriage and for the wife that He is already saving you for?  What harm does it do to look at “pretty girls?”  Why shouldn’t my boys walk around with their abs or chests on display for all to see, or their underwear showing?

These are all real conversations, and let’s be honest… they are hard, awkward conversations to have.  But, if I (and my dear husband) don’t tell my boys what their eyes should be careful of seeing, then, well, then they will see it and might not think anything of it.  Or worse yet, they will think it is cool and normal and what everyone does.  Why wouldn’t they?  That’s what this world teaches them.  Even if it is hard, we have to be willing as parents to say it’s not o.k.

I want to be a Proverbs 4 mom.  I want my boys to listen and accept what I say and to view me with wisdom and hold my instruction.  I want them to set their feet on the straight path and to avoid the path of the wicked, evil doer; lest they eat wickedness and drink violence.

As I think of the perpetrators in Human Trafficking, I realize that each of these men had a mama.  Each of them had someone who should have been singing over them “oh be careful little eyes what you see.”  And yet, yet they chose to eat wickedness and drink violence.  They walk the path that leads them to purchasing women for their own gratification, without regard for their human dignity.  And as a society, we have fallen so far, that we silently condone this behavior.  Not by what we say, but by what we don’t say.

If you are a parent, it’s time to take a stand.  It.is.not.ok.  We can’t continue to address problems once it is “too late”. Although I pray for the perpetrators,  my heart is that we would raise up a generation that is so repulsed by the “things of this world” and the overt sexuality that seems so culturally acceptable, that they revolt.  They call it what it is and look away, lest their eyes see and images become burned in their minds.  And may this generation be a generation that leads us on the path of righteousness.  May purity be valued and prized more than beauty.  May a turtle neck and a heart to heart talk be more attractive to our boys than a plunging neckline and sultry expressions.  Lord, may my boys see the girls/women that they encounter the way that you would see them.  May they look with eternal eyes instead of with hungry eyes.

Are you ready to join me?  Can we as parents start training our kids with instruction that will be spot on and deter them from the path of wickedness?  Can we be brutally honest and have hard talks, all with the intent of “going there?”  Let’s teach our boys to be gentleman and to love like Jesus.  As a mom of boys, we can’t control the “girls”, and we certainly can’t place all the blame on them  (have you heard the saying, what gets rewarded gets repeated?)  So, let’s love them enough to teach our boys how to control themselves.  How to look away.  How to have confidence in being the men of God that they were intended to be.  Reality is if enough of our boys aren’t looking, our girls will shift what they are trying to do to gain their attention.  Wouldn’t be great if that meant deep conversation and a love for Jesus?

Oh, be careful little eyes what you see…