It’s May. I can hardly believe it, but you’ll hear no complaints from me. There is nothing like warm weather with summer right around the corner. Every May at the Gathering, we turn our focus to relationships, sex, and dating. About 8 weeks ago, we started to plan for this year’s series and discuss the state of our world, specifically images, sex in the media and overall purity. As a leadership team, we looked around, did some research, and became extremely frustrated. Tim Tebow has a $1,000,000 sexual bounty on his head, 20/20 interviewers of porn stars indicate that many “p-stars” prefer to be drugged up when performing their craft for the world to see, 8 year olds are viewing hardcore porn, and by 2050 researchers say that prostitution will be rampant and worse yet: the prostitutes performing the “down-and-dirty” will be robot drones. Hey, but don’t knock it, those same researchers say that robot prostitutes will put an end to human sex trafficking (I’m rolling my eyes of course)…
In 1 Corinthians 5, Paul writes of his shock over sexual immorality in the local church. He specifically says that he’s not writing to unbelievers but that his rebuke is for believers. He says that sexual immorality, if not removed, will spread throughout the church resulting in mass destruction. When you consider the Bible and God’s original intent for sex and relationships, it is clear that the world has exploited it for everything it’s worth.
So we began to ask some questions. How can we flip this around? How can we expose the world for all of its lies, and come full circle?
Think about this: strip clubs - where men flock to in the darkness of the night and bare-ly (PUN) 18-year-old girls grind on you for a price - have somehow been coined as “gentlemen’s clubs.” There is absolutely nothing gentle about an 18-year-old grinding the heck out of you. Tom Brady, the all-American quarterback, tells us a couple of years ago about porn, and his acceptance of it. Somehow 67% of men and 49% of women in America now say that porn is “acceptable.” Crazy, right? For far too long porn has been viewed as a victimless-vice and a private matter, when research clearly show’s that viewing porn as a married man increases your chances of having an extramarital affair by 300%! Our world is FILLED with rules, laws, and warnings, but for some reason no such warnings appear for this area.
So, we’re pushing it to the limits this month. It is time to stop dining on the edge of disaster. We need to realize what living on the edge produces. Living life on the edge of sexual sin puts us in a position of extreme vulnerability; one false move and your screwed. It’s time to showcase that viewing porn literally destroys your brain and self-confidence. Sleeping around and living however we want may seem fun for a season, but it develops gigantic voids in character and ultimately removes us from the path God designed for us.
At the end of the day, being close to Jesus should be our goal. For too long we’ve allowed ourselves to sit back, trying to pray against sin and temptation, but not realizing that sin, by nature, is intended to destroy our lives, period. This month we’ve set out to expose the world for it’s dirty little secrets.
We would love to see you tonight and all this month as we embark on our new, 5-week series called SKIN.
If you can’t make it check out our podcast at http://itun.es/iVq4XM
As always, we want to hear from you. Share your stories with us on Twitter at @thegatheringmi or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.