Head Shot, Chest Shot, Stomach Punch

For though we live in the body, we do not wage war in an unspiritual way, since the weapons of our warfare are not worldly, but are powerful through God for the demolition of strongholds. We demolish arguments and every high-minded thing that is raised up against the knowledge of God, taking every thought captive to obey Christ.   ~2 Corinthians 10:3-5

HEAD SHOT – Attacking the Helmet of Salvation
What is Salvation?
God loves you – John 3:16All Have Sinned – Romans 3:23
All deserve death – Romans 6:23
God is pursuing us – Romans 5:8
God forgives those who repent – Acts 2:38, I John 1:9
Those who call on the name of the Lord shall be saved. – Romans 10:9-10
God saves by grace and mercy – Ephesians 2:8-9, Titus 3:4-7
God can rescue you and set you free from addictions – John 8:31-36, Isaiah 1: 16-18    
God doesn’t love you.
God won’t forgive you
You aren’t saved.
You aren’t good enough.
God has left you.
God can’t rescue you.
God can’t make you clean.
I’m not a bad person.
CHEST SHOT – Attacking the Breastplate of Righteousness
What is Righteousness?
Ten Commandments – Exodus 20
Love God, parents and neighbors
Don’t lie, steal, murder or be jealous
Love God and People – Matthew 22:37-39, John 15:12
Obey God’s Commands – I John 2:3-6
Make Disciples that obey God’s Commands – Matthew 28:18-20
Visiting widows and orphans – James 1:26-27    
Love yourself.
You deserve what you want.
Other people are not as important as you.
Follow your heart to determine what is right and wrong.
Everyone else is doing it.
You are missing out.
Do what you want. 
Do what makes you feel good.
Studying the Bible is good enough, you don’t have to stand for righteousness.
STOMACH PUNCH – Attacking the Belt of Truth
What is Truth?
God created the heavens and the earth – Genesis 1:1, Hebrews 3:4
We are accountable to God – Hebrews 9:27, Revelation 21:6-8, Revelation 20:11-12, Revelation 20:14-15
God determines what is right and wrong – Matthew 25:31, John 3:19-21
Jesus is the only way to God – John 14:6, Acts 4:12
Jesus came in the flesh – 1 John 4:2-3
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom – Proverbs 9:10.
Heaven is full of rewards – 1 Corinthians 2:9, John 14:2-3, Hebrews 11:6    
The earth evolved from evolution. 
There is no God.
There are many gods. 
All roads lead to heaven.
Jesus was an angel.
The Bible is just stories. 
We are smarter now.
FOOT SWEEP – Attacking the Gospel of Peace
What is peace?
Forgiveness is the start of peace with God – Romans 5:1
Peace (Shalom) is things flowing as they should – Psalm 1:2-3, Joshua 1:8, 1 Peter 3:8-12
Parents loving their children – Malachi 4:6, Titus 2:4-5
Children obeying their parents – Ephesians 6:1
Godliness and contentment are great gain – I Timothy 6:6
There is no peace for the wicked – Isaiah 57:20-21
The way of the upright is a highway – Proverbs 15:19
A prayerful and thankful heart is blessed with peace – Philippians 4:4-9  
Discord and destruction against Peace
Foolishness against Wisdom
Curses against Blessings
Divorce turns a child’s world upside down.
False teachers lead people away from God.
Evil people trying to shut down church, evangelism and Bible study.
Addiction and laziness
BULLETS AND DARTS – Attacking the Shield of Faith
What is faith?
Faith is building a legacy of walking with God – Hebrews 11:1-3
Faith without works is dead – James 2:19-20, James 2:26
We were made for good works – Ephesians 2:10
Hold firm the foundations of truth and God will fight for you – Psalm 11: 2-7  
Studying the Bible is enough, you don’t have to do it.
Tell God what you want him to do for you.
Don’t witness, because people might get upset.
Don’t tell people about what God is doing in your life.
Don’t thank God in front of other people for helping you.
FIGHTING BACK – Using the Sword of the Spirit
What is the Sword?
The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God – Hebrews 4:12
Jesus quoted scripture when attacked – Matthew 4:1-11
Jesus proclaimed the Word of the Lord – Luke 4:18-19
Jesus used God’s Word to chase away evil – Mark 11:15-18
Be a light that chases away darkness – Matthew 5:16
Love your enemies and bless those who curse you – Matthew 5:44-45
Live boldly for God – Titus 2:11-15, 2 Timothy 1:8-12, 2 Timothy 4:1-2
Jesus will judge and rule the nations with the Sword of His Mouth – Revelation 1:16-18, Revelation 19:15-16  
People can believe what they want. 
Don’t talk about God and make them upset.
God wants us to be happy.
I was born this way.
You are making a mess by stirring people up.
Don’t say that, people will get upset.
Don’t quote scripture.
The Bible is not clear.
God doesn’t care, he just wants to make us happy.
Just be a good person, don’t talk about the Bible.
Hell is where the party is at.
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The Pebble in My Shoe

Then Jesus said to him, “Go, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and serve Him only.’”  ~Matthew 4:10

The pebble in my shoe is a little stone that rubs my foot, when I walk.  Over time the pebble makes a sore on my foot.  My foot may become callous to the pebble, if the pebble stays in one spot.  But, then the pebble shifts a little and I start getting irritated again.  The simple answer is to take off my shoe, take out the pebble and then have a happy life.  Unfortunately, the pebble in my shoe keeps getting replaced.

The pebble in my shoe is a question … If giving honor to the names of other gods offends the Creator God, why does my calendar come pre-printed with the names of seven false gods? 

For example, if I want to set an appointment on Creation Day 5 of this week, people don’t understand what I am talking about.  I have to give honor to Thor, the god of Thunder, for people to understand I am setting an appointment on Thursday.  When I get ready to set an appointment, the pebble in my shoe gets irritated.  The fifth day of the week does not belong to the false god, Thor. 

God is offended that I would take the day that He created and dedicate it to a false god. 
This is the day which the LORD has made;
Let us rejoice and be glad in it.
   ~Psalm 118:24

When God looks at us, He does not want any false gods in His presence.
God said, “You shall have no other God’s before me.”  
~Exodus 20:3

I am not working hard in honor of the Sun, Moon, Thunder or any false god. 
And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the LORD and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.  ~Colossians 3:23-24

Can you help me with the pebble in my shoe?

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How to Talk to Kids about Pornography: 3 Painless Steps

July 11, 2019

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Parents, what conversation is dreaded more than the first one about pornography? I’m not sure there is one! Teaching kids about where babies come from seems simple in comparison. The good news is that it’s not as difficult as you think. I’ve broken it down into three relatively painless steps: start early, empower kids with the basics, and keep on learning and talking!

1. Start Early

How early should you begin warning your child about pornography? The short answer is as soon as they have any access to the internet (or apps that lead to the internet). #SoonerIsSafer! No conscientious parent allows a child access to a busy street without teaching them about the dangers of oncoming cars. It just makes sense to give young kids a gentle warning about harmful content as soon as they are allowed to play on the byways of the internet.

Susan is a very protective mom, and very wise, too. She told me about the time when her 7-year-old son was exposed to pornography by a neighbor. A few days earlier, she had re-read Good Pictures Bad Pictures to her son and reminded him of what to do if he ever saw a bad picture. Although it was distressing, everything worked according to plan! He turned away and went home and told his mom what he had seen. Thankfully, he was prepared!

Children who are caught off guard by pornography are not safe. They are more vulnerable than children who have been warned and given a plan for responding to exposure.

When a parent begins early, it’s not awkward for the child. As the adult, you create the context. Parents continue to tell me that their kids take it well, and that broaching the topic creates an even stronger, more trusting bond with their child.

Don’t be scared—be prepared!

2. Empower Kids with Three Basics

Children need to know three things about pornography:

  • What it is—they need an appropriate definition of pornography.
  • Why it’s harmful—so many kids grow up without a clue that pornography can hurt their young minds—they need good information!
  • How to reject it—a simple plan so they know exactly what to do when they see pornography.

An age-appropriate definition of pornography for a young child gives them just enough information so they can recognize it. In my Good Pictures Bad Pictures series of read-aloud books, I use the following simple definition. “Pornography means pictures, videos or even cartoons of people with little or no clothes on…that focus on the private parts of the body we keep covered with a swimsuit.”

Some critics argue that pornography should not be equated with nudity or else it will cause “body shame.” I take great pains to assure kids that “every part of your body is good, including your private parts. But taking pictures of them and sharing them with others is not good.” Kids are very literal, and nuance is lost on them. Just teach them to come and tell you if they see nudity or near nudity and you can enlighten them if they need additional understanding. For simple tips on how to explain the difference between porn and art to a child, read this blog post.

Explain why it’s harmful. For young children, I use the “picture poison” analogy in my Good Pictures Bad Pictures Jr. book. You’ve already taught them about poison and harmful substances. Pictures can poison the mind, too. Again, reassurance is critical: “There’s something good you can do if you see a bad picture.”

Older children can learn how pornography can become a bad habit or even an addiction. Once kids understand the process of addiction, they have a real opportunity to protect their own brains. Good Pictures Bad Pictures: Porn-Proofing Today’s Young Kids describes how the “thinking brain” and the “feeling brain” can work together to stay safe from addiction. This article from my website ProtectYoungMinds.org contains a simplified explanation of how addictions develop.

3. Give Kids a Plan

It’s common wisdom to teach kids to respond to a fire or active shooter. They need the same “fire drill” for pornography. Thankfully, most children won’t deal with a fire or a shooter, but all of them will need to escape from pornography.

The “escape” plan from Good Pictures Bad Pictures Jr. is simply “Turn, Run and Tell!” Turn away from the bad picture, hurry and get away, and go tell a trusted adult what you saw. The CAN DO Plan from Good Pictures Bad Pictures helps kids not only turn away from it, but to label it by saying “That’s pornography!” This allows kids to have more control over their thoughts by engaging their thinking brain.

Make sure your kids know who they can talk to about pornography exposure wherever they are. Talk to their teachers at school and find out what their plan is for students reporting pornography exposure.  

Finally, help your kids to know how to minimize or “forget” any shocking images they are exposed to by learning to redirect their thoughts to something they get excited about. For example, if they love horses, have them think about saddling up and galloping away! And encourage them to keep practicing—it takes several times, but every time a bad image pops up, just keep thinking about something else. Pretty soon, that memory will begin to fade.

No Child Deserves to Face the Porn Industry Alone

Kids who interface with screens need to know what pornography is, why it’s harmful and what to do when they see it. And they also need constant mentoring. Some families use #TalkTechTuesdays to address all kinds of digital age issues. Whatever day you choose, make sure you keep talking with your kids and listening to their experiences.

I am grateful for caring adults who choose to confront pornography head on so kids won’t have to face it alone. And once you begin the conversation, it gets easier and more comfortable. You CAN DO it.

To get started, check out the free Quick Start Guide for Proactive Parents on ProtectYoungMinds.org.

Kristen A. Jenson, MA is the founder of Protect Young Minds and best-selling author of the Good Pictures Bad Pictures series of read-aloud books. She serves on the Safeguard Alliance founded by the National Center on Sexual Exploitation.

Additional Resources:

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Banned Practice: YouTube Takes Censorship to Trans Debate

November 08, 2019

By Tony Perkins

“Talk with teens about possible regret.” That’s what the American Academy of Pediatrics says about tattoos and body piercings. But when it comes to giving a girl who thinks she’s a boy a double mastectomy, the same organization thinks parents should “respect” their kids’ wishes.

That’s just part of the hypocrisy Dr. Michelle Cretella was trying to point out about the liberal medical community in a popular video for the Daily Signal. I say “trying,” because after two years, the flaggers at YouTube decided to pull down the 2017 content and ban it. The truth about transgenderism, they said, “violates YouTube’s hate speech policy.” According to liberal flaggers, the offensive part was just one sentence — but, as Daily Signal editor Katrina Trinko explained on Thursday’s “Washington Watch,” it was an important one.

“If I walk into my doctor’s office today and say, ‘Hi, I’m Margaret Thatcher,’ my physician will say I am delusional and give me an anti-psychotic,” Dr. Cretella explained. But, “if instead, I walked in and said, ‘I’m a man,’ he would say, ‘Congratulations, you’re transgender.’ If I were to say, ‘Doc, I’m suicidal because I’m an amputee trapped in a normal body, please cut off my leg,’ I will be diagnosed with body identity integrity disorder. But if I walk into that doctor’s office and say, ‘I am a man, sign me up for a double mastectomy,’ my physician will.” Then came the part that really set YouTube off: “See, if you want to cut off a leg or an arm you’re mentally ill, but if you want to cut off healthy breasts or a penis, you’re transgender.”

Nothing that Dr. Cretella said is medically inaccurate. “And yet [it’s] so ‘offensive,'” Katrina argued, that “YouTube cannot even let it be said.” And what’s even more incredible is that this video has been online for a whole two years! It already has 70 million views. If YouTube wanted to keep the lid on these facts, they sure took their time doing it. But even now, after months of back-and-forth with the Daily Signal, it’s obvious the company isn’t concerned about truth or fairness. “We said, ‘Hey, we understand you’re a private company. We respect that you have the right to have your own rules. But we really think that this is a targeting of conservatives. Can we come to some sort of understanding?”

YouTube’s answer? No. “Ultimately, we were told the only way we could get the video back on YouTube was to delete the sentence [about cutting off healthy body parts]. In other words, we had two choices: censor the doctor’s words or have no video on the world’s biggest video platform.” That, Katrina said, “should horrify every YouTube user — and anyone who values the importance of a public square featuring a variety of perspectives.”

At a time when children are being legitimately and irreparably hurt by this ideology, the last thing any social media company should be doing is silencing experts. Dr. Cretella is a pediatrician with decades of professional experience. She understands the consequences of this because she’s seen them. If families reinforce and support their kids’ biological gender through puberty, “the vast majority of gender-confused children [as many as 98 percent!] get better.” But here we are, she warns, rushing to “chemically castrate gender-confused children with puberty blockers. Then we permanently sterilize many of them by adding cross-sex hormones, which also put them at risk for heart disease, strokes, diabetes, cancers, and even the very emotional problems that the gender experts claim to be treating.”

The truth may be uncomfortable. The science might be “offensive.” But what people don’t know about this fad of self-expression is destroying our children’s futures. The Left can’t debate Dr. Cretella — they can’t argue against the facts — so they call it “hate speech.” It’s time for the rest of us to rise up and speak out — while we still can! Conservatives may not be as loud and noisy and quick to complain as liberals, Katrina says, “but we exist.” And we should be allowed to speak freely. If you agree, weigh in. Tweet at them: @YouTube and @google. Or leave a message on Google’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/Google/) or YouTube’s (https://www.facebook.com/youtube/).

Tony Perkins’s Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.

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