Archives For parenting

Going through adolescence as a boy has never been easy, but in today’s day and age it’s more hazardous than ever.  And for parents, the nightmare is real.  No parent wants their son to be a future perpetrator on a #MeToo headline.  No parent wants their son to abuse women, or to objectify women, or to be in and out of relationships and marriages their whole life.

93.2% of boys and 62.1% of girls have seen online pornography before age 18.
(http://www.familysafemedia.com/pornography_statistics.html).  You can read Covenant Eyes’s full statistics pack about porn here.  Here’s what I know anecdotally:

  • The male sex drive is very strong.
  • Kids are being given smartphones and tablets like they are candy.  With full access to any porn they want, or that they accidentally stumble on.
  • When I was in middle school and high school, it was normal for guys to talk about porn in open conversations, even with girls around.
  • People started having in sex in 7th and 8th grade.  It became commonplace by high school.
  • I estimate that many of the attractive, popular guys from my high school have probably had sex with 50+ women by the time they turn 30 (and that’s probably low for some), when they finally marry and “settle down”.  These aren’t “creepy” guys.  These are the guys women see as attractive, fun, desirable, and successful.
  • Movies and shows jam-packed with sex and nudity like Game of Thrones are the most popular entertainment options in our culture.  Expect this trend to continue to the point where there is no more envelope left to be pushed and no more line between what culture calls “porn” and public entertainment.

What feels so defeating Continue Reading…

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/32611305] Well I became a dad on Monday, November 21st, at 4:12pm with the birth of our beautiful daughter Lexi Hope Filipiak, weighing in at 9lb 7oz, 22″.  The thing about being a dad that is the most eye-opening for me is trying to wrap my head around the concept that this human life came from Jen and I’s bodies, yet we had nothing to do with the development of the process.  As Jen’s pregnant stomach grew over the months , we would talk about how fascinating it is that this new human being is miraculously coming together, yet it isn’t as if Jen was ever consciously making any of Lexi’s body parts grow or function.

I do not use the word “miraculous” loosely here.  Having a child makes me realize the miracle, straight from God’s hand, that birth really is.  We often look to God to do miracles in our lives and if He doesn’t do them, we declare Him to be a weak God, a bad God, or a non-existent God.  I’ve talked to numerous atheists, agnostics, and doubting Christians over the years who tell me if God would do a miracle for them, that they would believe in Him.  Well I have an announcement to make:  He just did one on Monday, and her name is Lexi.  As you may have figured out by now, this wasn’t his first time using this trick.

When I think about how God chose for human life to be regenerated, it sounds like something from a bizarre science fiction movie.  In fact, it sounds weirder than anything from a science fiction.  Imagine you did not know how human life generated and some9thone explained to you how it begins with a yogurt like substance and an egg…these two things are mixed together and hokus pokus, a mini human starts growing from within the mother’s belly.  Anyone getting shades of the Alien movie at this point?  Yeah, it’s that weird.  That fictitious sounding.  That miraculous (thankfully with a better result than in the movie).

Its hair develops.  Its skin shade.  Its face shape.  Its lungs.  Its eyes.  Its brain.  Its tiny little fingernails. Its personality.

Makes you wonder what actually makes a “miracle” a miracle by our definition.  Imagine humans being were formed in some other way, in a way that made more sense, a way that was less awe-inspiring.  Let’s say new humans were actually generated in a factory, or online (maybe you could print them out somehow?).  And this is the way every human was created for all of time.  Then one day, out of the blue, this yogurt substance and this microscopic egg got mixed together and from them a new microscopic human starting forming all on its own… and it grew inside a woman’s belly!!!  And this adult human walked around with this baby human living inside of her!  With a fleshy tube connecting its new body to her adult body!  And whatever she ate was fed to the new human.  And then one day this new human came out of the adult human!  Its cord gets cut and now, all-of-a-crazy-sudden, this new human is breathing and eating and living and pooping on its own!  Not to mention you don’t need to go to the grocery store, it drinks MILK right from the MOTHER and doesn’t need to be taught how to do this…Who made that up?  Milk coming out of an adult human?  Whoever thought of that needs to grow up.  How ridiculous…no one is going to believe this.  The baby pops out fully functional, without conscious thought from its parents…are you ____-ing kidding me?!  And then after this they flew to Saturn, met some ninja Wookies, and played badminton with Spock.  If this actually happened within a world where humans were factory-built, we would all definitely point to this one-time new human birth as a MIRACLE.  We’d say there must be some kind of supernatural being / God behind this nonsensical explanation of how the trillions of intricacies of human life come together so automatically.

But because this happens every day, in every town, we say it’s no big deal.

There’s no God behind this.

If God wrote my name in the clouds with purple fire, then yes, I’d believe in Him.  But a baby’s birth = common place.  I want some purple fire or you don’t exist God.

There’s no God behind the sun rising every morning to give us the light and heat we need for existence.  The sun, dude, that is so easy to explain, come on, we see it every day.  Now if the sun starting bouncing around the sky and raining blue elephants down, who shot doughnut holes out of their trunks, and had messages on their sides that read in neon lights, “God is real, turn to Jesus”, well THEN of course I’d believe, because THAT would be a miracle.  But the sun?  I see that every day.  Not impressed.

I think it’s time we start being impressed with God’s miracles.  With the gift of life.  With the sun.  With snowflakes, like my Lexi, so beautiful, trillions of them, yet none is a replica of another.  With the rain.  With the stars.  With seeds and fruit.  With the butts of lightning bugs…(come on God, you’re just showing off on that one)

And of course, as all brand new parents will say a hearty “Amen” to, with coffee beans.  Oh dear Lord, we thank for this wonderful miracle!!!

Psalm 139:13-18  For you created my inmost being;
        you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
        your works are wonderful,
        I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you
        when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
 your eyes saw my unformed body.
        All the days ordained for me
        were written in your book
        before one of them came to be.

How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
        How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them,
        they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake,
        I am still with you.