Psalm 144:12 May our daughters be like graceful pillars, carved to beautify a palace.
Now I don’t know about you but when I think of a Pillar I don’t normally think beauty, but when this was written Pillars weren’t as they are now. Pillars were a big deal!
Two pillars were incorporated into all temples during David’s time.
In 1 Kings 7:15-22 you can read about the pillars in Solomon’s temple.
They were cast from bronze and decorated with latticework and interwoven chains. They were encircled with pomegranates and the tops were shaped like water lilies.
Those are some pillars, right? So much detail and intricacy. They were beautiful.
This tells me that it’s okay for our daughters to be beautiful. We can let them wear makeup, color their hair, pluck their eyebrows, paint their nails and so on, but we have to teach them how to do that gracefully- which we’ll get into in just a second.
As I studied these pillars further I found that they weren’t just about looks. The pillars were hollow, but they didn’t remain empty. They were used to store ‘ancient records’ and the ‘valuable writings’ pertaining to the historic past of the Jewish people. What they had inside was just as important or more important than how they looked outside.
That’s a huge part of what you have to get across to our daughters. Sure, she can be beautiful, just like the pillars. But she’s not just for looks.
I know that sounds cliche… It’s what on the inside that counts, but it really is true. Our daughters can be beautiful and intricate like the pillars but they have to know that’s not where their identity lies.
Let’s go back to the pillars in Solomon’s temple for just a second. They were set at the entrance of the temple one toward the south which was called Jakin and one towards the north which was called Boaz.
Jachin, which means “He will establish”, and that on the left Boaz, which means “in strength”.
Our daughters need to be established in strength. And strength comes from the joy of the Lord. Make sure your daughters are established in their relationship with the Lord. Their joy and their identity should come from who they are in Christ.
The description on the pillars in Solomon’s temple said they were decorated with Pomegranates. The pomegranate symbolizes sanctity, fertility, and abundance. Also, Pomegranate seeds are said to number 613—one for each of the Bible’s 613 commandments.
Our daughters need to be adorned with God’s word. The need to be familiar with the Bible and it’s commands.
Lillies were also mentioned in the design of the pillars. The lily’s scepter or trumpet shape makes it a symbol of royalty. Its white color indicates purity, innocence, hope, and virtue. The world has tried to take away any form of purity, innocence, and virtue.
It simply does not exist on MTV and in movies and magazines, but we are not of this world and we need to strive to raise pure, innocent, and virtuous women that love God.
So lets get practical… I want to give you some simple but effective ways to help your daughter be beautiful AND pure.
It’s easy to see that teenage girls are misguided when it comes to their clothes. I see girls at the movies, the mall and even at church in clothes that are 2 sizes too small. Tummies showing, shorts as short as the can get, low cut shirts, and super tight jeans.
Our daughters see girls in magazines and on TV that dress that way and they also see how the BOYS at school are attracted to the girls on TV that dress that way so they want to dress that way to. Girls are being bombarded with the message, The racier the clothes they wear, the more other girls—and boys—notice them, the more popular they will be and the more “fun” they will have.
Even if a girl has a sincere desire to dress modestly, it is becoming increasingly more difficult to find clothing stylish enough to meet the approval of their peers and yet not be revealing, but that doesn’t mean you have to give in.
You can let your daughter shop at the “cool” places to shop, just give her guidelines. Before you go in let her know that when she raises her hands her tummy can’t show and her shorts have to be a certain length, and her jeans don’t have to be big and baggy, but she does need to be able to bend her knees in them.
IF YOU DON’T GIVE HER GUIDELINES HOW WILL SHE KNOW WHAT’S OK AND WHAT’S NOT?
You are the parent and you have the right to tell your daughter what she can or can’t wear. You need to explain to her why she can’t wear certain things.
Girls don’t understand what a huge problem lust if for men, a lot of moms don’t understand that either, but it is a serious, serious problem in our society. Teenage boys are becoming addicted to it and it’s a hard a habit to break as anything. Don’t let your daughter play a part in that.
Explain to her that boys at school and men at the supermarket have problems with lust and if she’s showing of her tummy she’s giving them an invitation to lust after her, which means she’s inviting them to sin.
It sounds heavy, but it’s true.
Romans 14:21 It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or do anything else if it might cause another believer to stumble.
You have got to be involved in your daughters wardrobe. Check her outfit before she heads off to school. If her shirt is too low cut make her put on a camisole underneath it.
I’m not saying send her to school in a sweat suit that covers her entire body. Let her shop where her friends shop, but have guidelines. With a little effort she can still look and feel cute and trendy without crossing the line.
What and who are influencing your daughter? Who does she look up to or aspire to be like. Who’s giving her advice on dating and relationships?
A lot of teenage girls are confused about dating and relationships because they are getting ridiculous advice from some Seventeen magazine writer who’s probably never had a successful relationship to speak of.
Pay attention to what your daughter is reading. I’m not sure if there is a teen magazine out there worthy of buying for your daughter, so I would try to avoid it if you can. They aren’t really good for much.
They have images of these perfectly airbrushed girls that make your daughter feel likes she’s got to look like that all the time and they are full of useless articles on dating and love that will only confuse a young girl.
If your daughter likes them for the fashion or make up tips then make sure you tear out the trashy articles before she gets her hands on it.
You also need to pay attention to your daughters friends. Your daughters friends are probably the most influential people in her life right now. If her friends think that something is cool then she will most likely thinks it’s cool. If they don’t like something, she won’t like it.
The opinions of her friends mean the world to her. As a parent it’s your job to make sure she has the right friends. Friends that will sharpen her and offer her Godly advice. Don’t think she can hang around girls that don’t serve God and not be affected by them. That’s very unrealistic thinking. Whoever she is hanging around at school wll rub off on her. So talk to her about choosing the right friends.
Romans 16:17 I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them.
Be on the look out for anything that would cause division between you and your daughter or anything that would put obstacles in her way that oppose the word of God.
Another huge area you need to address with your daughter is Sex.
One thing that might shock parents is that girls talk about sex. Most people think it’s only high school boys that are talking about it in the locker room, but girls talk too.
The fundamentals are not important to her, she gets how babies are made. You need to talk to her about the things she’s facing now. The pressure to have sex or to say she’s had sex to fit in. How far is too far?
Why is sex before marriage wrong?
Here are some scriptures you can show her:
1 Corinthians 7:2-3 – “But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband.” (NIV)
Hebrews 13:4 – “Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.” (NIV)
1 Thessalonians 4:3-4 – “It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable” (NIV)
Talk to her about her wedding night. How romantic and special it will be if she has saved her self for her husband. Girls love romance so romanticize waiting to have sex as much as possible. Really stress how sweet it will be to stand before her family, friends, and groom in her white dress and know that she is pure and she has an incredible gift to give to her new husband.
Hollywood tries to romanticize sleeping with whoever whenever, but there is nothing romantic about that. Nothing special or sacred.
1 Corinthians 6:16 from the message says it best. Sex is as much spiritual mystery as physical fact. As written in Scripture, “The two become one.” Since we want to become spiritually one with the Master, we must not pursue the kind of sex that avoids commitment and intimacy, leaving us more lonely than ever—the kind of sex that can never “become one.” (The Message)
The kind of sex that can never “become one” is so unfufilling and unromantic. Hollywood makes it look fun, but the word says it will leave you more lonely than ever.
Now many Christian and non Christian teens have drawn a line and said I will not have sexual intercourse before I am married! But somehow they’ve gotten the idea that other forms of sex are okay.
For instance according to a survey done by the national campaign oral sex is now more common than sexual intercourse. More than half of teens age 15-19 have had oral sex. Let your daughter now that is too far!
Pretty soon that will not be enough and it will lead to actual sex. Everything seems to work that way. You hold hands, that doesnt do it anymore, so you kiss, that was pretty fun but you’re ready for more, so you make out, that was fun, but it starts to get old so now clothing starts to come off.
Talk to her about keeping the flame of lust under control so it wont become a raging inferno.
You also need to talk to her about how to avoid being overwhelmed with temptation. You need to show her from the word how to overcome temptation.
I Corinthians 10:13 is a great place to start. “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able; but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.”
That’s a great verse to give her and for you to speak over your kids every day. Because let me tell you they will be tempted, but the verse says never beyond what they can handle.
Christian parents can be so naive when it comes to their kids having sex. But it happens. Christian kids are just as curious as kids that aren’t saved. Temptation is just as strong as it is for them as it is for regular kids or maybe even stronger since it’s supposed to be totally off limits. Sometimes that can make it appeal to kids even more.
You can’t sit back and hope your daughter doesn’t become sexually active before she’s married.
Don’t assume everything is under control. Take action! We’ve given you some great scriptures to start the conversation with so you don’t have any excuses.
When your daughter starts to become interested in boys, even if the boy she likes seems to be the sweetest Christian boy in the world, you’ve got to make it as hard as possible for sex and lust to even be an option for them.
Limit The Alone Time. A lot of teenagers find themselves in bad situations because they get alone and temptation gets the best of them. Try to keep them on your turf and as much as possible. But even if they are at your house that doesn’t mean you can just leave them alone in a room with the door locked.
If they are coming over to the house to watch a movie they need to be watching the movie in a room with some lights on and a room where you can see them at all times. They shouldn’t be allowed to watch a movie in a bedroom with a closed door or in a part of the house that’s secluded from the rest of the family.
If they go out to see a movie you need to know when the movie starts and when it ends. They don’t need to be driving around alone for long periods of time. Alone in a car is not a good place for a teenage couple to be.
Really anywhere where they can be alone should be off limits. You need to work on having a relationship with your daughters boyfriends parents. You need to be able to call them when they say they are going over to his house and make sure they will be there. Make sure his parents know your rules. No time alone, No dark rooms, etc.
Statistics tell us that 68% of 16-18 year olds who reported having sex said that they first had sexual intercourse in their family home, their parters family home, or a friends house.
Again, you need to have a relationship with your daughters boyfriends parents. They need to be on the same page as you.
Among teens who have had sex 70% report they first had sex in the evening. 42% said between 10pm & 7 am. That’s why curfew is crucial.
Alright so lets review…
Appearance. Your daughter can be beautiful and graceful at the same time. She should be full of God’s word and her identity should be found in her relationship with her heavenly father. You need to have guidelines in place for her wardrobe and explain to her that if she dresses inappropriately it can cause men to stumble and sin.
Influence. You need to monitor the magazines, tv shows, music, movies, and friends that have an influence on your daughters life. She shouldn’t have any obstructions or anything that opposes God’s word in her life.
Sex & Dating. Answer questions that she has. Show her verses from the Bible about sex. Talk to her about the benefits of waiting until she is married, how far is too far, and how to overcome temptation. Set up boundaries and win-win situations for your daughter when she begins to have interest in boys.
Parenting is no minor task. It’s not something we can afford to do by just “winging” it. We’re aiming to have daughters that are established in strength, who love God, who know how to live in this world, who are successful both in the world and also in God’s Kingdom… and ultimately, who raise their children to do the same.
Our children are the future pastors, teachers, prophets, evangelists and apostles who will influence the course of this nation and world. Remember every struggle you may experience along the way toward instilling these values in your daughter is worth the fight. Every ounce of energy you pour into encouraging these concepts is a worthy investment. These lessons on modesty, on influence and on sex are ultimately lessons on stewardship that will guide your daughter not just through puberty and her upcoming teenage years but also throughout her lifetime.
May our daughters be like graceful pillars, carved to beautify a palace.
For more teaching on this, Check out the 4 disc CD series “Parenting Teenagers”