A few weeks ago, a family on our street had their garage broken into. The thief stole a motorcycle and a guitar. Today as we walked home from church, I noticed a sign in their yard for a security system. I thought that seemed a little bit like locking the barn door after the horse is already gone, but I understand why they did it. Sometimes we don’t recognize the value of something until it is taken from us.

I think about purity, and how little it seems to be valued these days. It’s almost laughable to call yourself “pure.” It was in my early college days, too. Those of us who managed to escape high school with some purity intact were pressured into becoming less pure, if you will. I didn’t treasure and protect purity for myself until I’d lost it. And while you can, to some extent, protect what’s left, you never really get back what was lost.

I feel like an “old fogey” when this topic comes up with teens we know. Try to impress on them the value of pure hearts, minds and bodies, and I feel shut out before we’ve even begun to talk. I wonder if it will be the same with my children. Will they want to hear about the mistakes their parents have made and how desperately we want for them to avoid those mistakes?

Where are their examples of purity, anyway? Is there even one “cool” person who could stand as an example of pure living? And I’m not just talking sexual purity, but speech that’s not littered with “f-bombs” and lesser coarseness, humor that’s not based on innuendo, crudeness or at the expense of someone else, and a life that’s based on honesty and integrity.

Have we made those characteristics lame somehow? Do we search in vain for lives that model them? Is this what it’s like to get old?

How do we start over and give purity back its value?

More questions than answers today.

 “Who may ascend the hill of the LORD ? 
  Who may stand in his holy place?

 He who has clean hands and a pure heart, 
 who does not lift up his soul to an idol 
 or swear by what is false.

 He will receive blessing from the LORD 
 and vindication from God his Savior.

Such is the generation of those who seek him, 
who seek your face, O God of Jacob.” (Psalm 24:3-6)


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