“I was in a loving, healthy, great relationship for four years. It was long distance, and either your boyfriend is going to look at porn or he’s going to look at you.” – Jennifer Lawrence
In an interview with “Vanity Fair,” the film star with more awards and accolades than just about anyone her age (or anyone, period) reveals just where we are as a society. It’s one of the things we love most about her: putting into words that which no one else is willing to say. Speaking in the context of the hacking of her private photos, she accidentally gives us a window into our generation’s views. On technology. Relationships. Women. Porn. Men. The definitions of loving, healthy and great.
Listen, I get that long distance is hard. My sister and her fiancé are separated by … well, however many miles are between Texas and Japan. Several time zones. It takes sacrifice and patience and commitment. I’m sure it’s even worse in the sex-saturated culture of Hollywood.
And there’s no way I’m holding JLaw and her man to Christian standards of purity when that’s probably not even close to being a priority for them or reflective of their beliefs.
But chances are you or a teen you know is a Christian in the dating world. Maybe considering sexting. They have the camera phone and an app like Snapchat that promises to delete the photos as soon as their beloved sees them.
Maybe you or your teen believes the same lie that JLaw believes: It’s either my nude photos or porn. (Sadly, statistics suggest she’s right.)
Again, keeping in the Christian realm here since that’s where my people are, you may already know that type of romantic relationship is not what the Bible says is loving, healthy or great. (1 Cor. 6:13, Eph. 5:3, Col. 3:5)
For those leading and parenting teens, I think Craig Gross, founder of xxxchurch.com and iParent.tv, has it right in an article for Time when he cautions:
“If we as parents aren’t telling our kids how to handle social media, someone else will – and those people don’t always have our kids’ best interests at heart.”
Nor do those people always share our biblical worldview, even when they are our favorite entertainers.
On the one hand, my heart goes out to JLaw and all like her who are doing what seems right in their cultural context. I believe her when she says that’s just what typical committed couples do in her world. Her quote reveals she was actually trying to discourage her man from looking at porn.
But as great as that sounds from the world’s point of view, that’s not where we live as Christians. We have been called to a different lifestyle. One of purity in romantic relationships – not only of our physical bodies, but of our hearts and eyes as well.
If you are a Christian considering moving your dating relationship to the “next level” by sexting, I just want to encourage you to stop and examine your heart.
If your finger is hovering over the send button…
If it’s porn or your body…
If either of those are even options for this relationship…
it’s time to either have a difficult conversation or get out.
This is usually where writers like me tell you there are better guys/girls out there who aren’t into that. And there are. They are worth the wait.
But so are you. YOU are worth more than that. If your guy/girl tells you it’s either porn or sexting, he or she is not ready to be in a Christian relationship and your nude photos aren’t going to fix those issues.
If it’s porn or your nude photos, know that there is a third option. A life lived in faithfulness and trust that God knows what’s best for your relationship. To someone who isn’t a Christian, it sounds like utter foolishness. But to those who look to Him as their Creator and King, it’s safe to say He has a greater joy for you in mind than a relationship based on porn or sexting, greater than you could ever imagine.