Headline from the Huffington Post – “Porn Sites Get More Visitors Than Netflix, Amazon, and Twitter….Combined.” (click on the headline to read the article – stats below also from post).
Let that sink in for just a second…
Checking in at #1 YouTube has 800,000,000 unique visitors per month. #2…porn sites…at 450,000,000 unique visitors every single month. Rounding out the top 5 are Twitter (160,000,000), Amazon (110,000,000), and Netflix (46,000,000) respectively. That is an absolutely astonishing statistic. I know some of the readers are wondering about Facebook? They just barely edged out Twitter with a shade under 163,000,000 unique visitors in July 2016.
Porn sites dominated more than the movies and shows you watch, more than the stuff you ‘primers’ order with free shipping, and more often than you write 140 characters or less to people whom you think care.
Reading that headline did a couple things to me…
First off, it absolutely shredded my heart.
However, it also gave me a lot of hope.
I understand that may seem weird but we can’t attack issues until we know where we are. It’s my belief we have to start at the root of any problem in order to properly eliminate it.
The advent of the internet and social media has flooded our economy with trillions of dollars (last scientific estimate was $4.2 trillion). It has reunited friends, families, and assisted many to find love.
It’s also destroyed friendships, families, and ruined more marriages than almost any other divorce indicator. In fact in the United States alone, Facebook was mentioned as a reason for divorce 33% of the time from research that was posted in May of this year.
So why the title of this blog entry? Let’s talk about where it starts. I am in absolute shock of the amount of calls I get sent on as a police officer lately that involve a boy (I refuse to say young man or man), asking a female for nude pictures of herself. The majority of those boys…show those pictures to other people.
This is where it all begins now.
The lack of respect for another human being in the simple ask for such pictures, should bring shame to you that penetrates the core of who you are.
I’ve heard the scare tactic, that is a daughter, sister, niece, etc of somebody else. Clearly that hasn’t worked.
So I’ve got my own for you.
That girl…is another soul.
Not a body.
Old-fashioned alert…What you and your spouse do inside the confines of marriage is between you two.
I’m talking to the boys (of any age), if you don’t respect a woman’s soul you aren’t a man.
When did we as a society start eliminating the reality that people have souls? Oh that’s right….since the beginning of time. This is not a new issue folks. We are allowing a searing of our conscious that is modifying, in a negative way, our index for right and wrong behavior.
White, black, brown, thug, upstanding citizen, criminal, pastor, etc…was made in the image of God. Period. I literally can’t type that sentence enough. Facts have their place…only outside the truth of the Imago Dei though.
Degrading other humans is like taking a theoretical knife and slicing open their soul.
Men – Be a man. Treat all women like they have a soul. There are so many swear words I want to type right now because the anger is blinding my attempt to be articulate.
Women – If a guy doesn’t treat you like you have a soul, he doesn’t truly care about you. It’s not cute. It’s not love. He’s not the future. It’s deplorable behavior.
Now…with all of that said…
To expect boys and girls to instantly have respect for other souls or themselves, without it being taught to them, is a foolish and absurd thought. It would be like getting upset with your newborn because they can’t walk.
We need to get into the space of the fatherless and motherless children in our community.
We can’t expect them to learn how to grow into adults without properly giving them examples.
You see the beauty behind all of this is the scandalous grace of Jesus heals all soul wounds.
There isn’t a single sin that grace can’t cover. The mere fact that Jesus was crucified should indicate the reality of Him.
He was walking around feeding people, performing miracles, and healing people. Who in their right mind wouldn’t want that dude around?
The religious elite didn’t want Him. People who cling to rules and plans. He violated those rules so He was to be crucified.
What kind of King leaves His throne to save someone like us?
Grace doesn’t follow a rubric. Jesus was using and elevating people, who for the record were way worse than us, to be the heroes. This scandalous grace I’m speaking of is a direct assault on the assumptions and theology of religious people.
Murderers, adulterers, liars, thieves…and I’m just describing the disciples. These 12 men though couldn’t help but look into the eyes of Jesus and just follow Him.
That’s why religion is a joke.
Religion has limits.
Religion has rules.
Religion has a love threshold.
Grace doesn’t operate within any bounds.
The beautiful thing about grace is it can’t be comprehended. The complexity of it’s beauty dictates the mere fact I could be the greatest guy in the world in the minds of the people who live in my community.
Yet, one deviation from who they think I am can eliminate years of conversations, acts of kindness, or perceptions that they cemented in their minds as reality.
The only reality that exists is the rawness and filth of this journey we call life. The good news is that grace already paid the liability.
All throughout scripture Jesus displays his aggressive affection for people who act like absolute morons. That alone should have us running to Jesus for the simple reason of inclusion.
Men, let’s take care of the women in our lives. Whether they are family, friends, or prospective spouses.
Let’s steward their souls. God gave us helpmates. Not toys.
We need to stop treating them as such…