Holding onto Hope is about the devastation of sexual abuse. It is destroying the hope for which our Lord came. There is a very large elephant in the room that my friend John Fort has addressed most effectively in his book, Accountability; Integrity through Relationship. The issue; Internet Pornography. Here are a few excerpts and statistics from John's book:
"The fact is pornography is not what it was in our generation. No generation in the history of the human race has ever faced anything like 21st Century online pornography. The effect of pornography use has changed, especially on children."
Pornography TODAY is not the same as in the 20th Century
"It is not uncommon for the first pornographic images a boy sees, to be videos that simulate men raping women against their will. 88% of video porn shows physical aggression. This teaches children that sex and violence go together."
Pornography is more graphic.
In a world super-saturated with sex, it takes extremes to be noticed. The pornography industry is producing more and more graphic, deviant, and shocking material, in order to be noticed. There are no imaginable sex acts that cannot be easily found online.
"83% of boys and 57% of girls have seen group sex on the Internet"
69% of boys and 55% of girls have seen porn showing same sex intercourse
There is an unlimited supply of Pornography
In the 20th Century and before, even the largest collectors of pornography had only a fraction of a percent of what is available online today. We cannot run out of things to look at any longer. Just knowing all that is out there creates a level of temptation no generation of boys has ever faced before.
Pornography is instantly accessible.
"21st Century online pornography "hooks" nearly every male who allows themselves repeated exposure to it. In the late 20th Century, it was estimated that as much as 25% of the adult male population was addicted to pornography. Today, the vast majority of males, ages 18-30 use pornography compulsively-constantly craving for more. We have gone from 25% dependence to 90% within a decade." "There is a tidal wave of pornography addiction about to overtake our country." Dr. Patrick Carnes...addiction research expert.
Holding onto Hope has been addressing this issue for nearly a decade. The 15 year olds of today know of nothing before the Internet. More and more counselors are seeing children as clients who have been viewing online pornography for years. John and I have discussed this, as I have made the claim for years now that the children and adults who have viewed pornography, have the same debilitating symptoms as children who have been sexually abused. It remains out of the public eye and discussion because the immense shame caused renders every community and most users silent. The perception is no problem exists.
Jesus brought to us the great hope of forgiveness and unending grace and mercy. This must be addressed...NOW. We are under greater attack than any other time in our history. That is not a surprise to the King. His offer of forgiveness has not changed. His offer of hope for recovery and redemption from this evil and the consequences of abuse are as they have always been...freeing, unconditional, and loaded with grace. Relief and release from the bondage is a heartfelt prayer away. What could be a greater gift for sons and fathers?
This is not about guilt tripping. This is not about harsh judgment. This is about standing up to the most difficult issue we as men and sons face in this world today and lovingly addressing it along with providing a sound approach for arming a warrior.
I have prepared a special 45 minute program for Fathers and Sons with the assistance of John's writing as well as my own history and the resources of Holding onto Hope. To continue ignoring what pornography does to teenagers is bad enough. But the stakes are far higher now. 21st Century pornography is hundreds of times more dangerous than what we could find in our childhood. To miss helping our sons is to sentence them to a life enslaved to pornography, depression, and the loss of real pleasure. John continues in his book, "We do not have to be experts to start this. We do not even need to have our own act together first. This is a journey that a father and son can take together at any age. The father will need to be the one taking the initiative, but that is about all he needs to start the process."
"A boy learns who he is and what he's got from a man...he cannot learn it any other place. He cannot learn it from other boys, and he cannot learn it from the world of women." John Eldredge, Wild at Heart
I will be scheduling programs throughout the 2016 year. If you believe your community would benefit consider contacting the leadership in your arena to schedule Father-Son night, a breakfast or whatever would work to provide dads and their sons this opportunity to bond together to help protect each other.
Holding onto Hope will provide the pizza and drinks.
Pick a date that works for your community.
Advertize and spread the word. Get a count (no cost to attend)
Holding on to Hope Ministries is a registered nonprofit 501(c)3 organization with the IRS and a registered corporation in Arizona.
All donations to the ministry are tax deductible per IRS regulations. Financial statements are available upon request.