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Choose Life Australia Some call me passionate – I suppose I am. What do I want? A safe place for our children here now and in the future. I want to hold high the intrinsic value of all human life in all states of dependency. I want to defend liberty of conscience, freedom of speech and I want to see ethical government. I want to see truth honoured and spoken. There’s more but that’ll do…

Counteracting the Trans Culture. Christian Parenting “…around the kitchen table”.

Counteracting the Trans Culture. Christian Parenting “…around the kitchen table”.

How to respond to your 7-year-old boy who thinks he might be a girl.

Is the situation different from that of the second half of the 20th century in terms of the sexual culture?

Yes, primarily then the culture was accepting of heteronormativity with “normal” sexual desires between “normal” male and female but seeking to make this a “free sex” culture, to hook-up with anyone you like free of consequences.

The contraceptive pill aided the illusion of free consequences. Abortion became a battleground of women’s rights and the baby was relegated to a piece of tissue that wasn’t – by any stretch of the imagination – really human (yes, stated openly in our national parliaments as recently as a decade ago).

At least masculinity and femininity were accepted and even (perversely) celebrated, and pornography became and continues to be a huge industry and battleground. Then came the flagrantly homosexual Mardi-Gras and families with children shared in the showtime.

And then came the trojan horse of the Safe Schools Coalition of Australia, born as an anti-bullying program for schools and endorsed in our parliaments, despite the revelation that this was an indoctrination program to prematurely sexualise our children. It is still endorsed by party policies and still supported by people who still (!) vote for the MPs that support these policies.

The principal spokesperson for SSCA is on the public record – visually – as saying the program was not really about bullying but about eliminating heteronormativity.

The evils of the safe-schools program are on the public record but included is the permission and implied encouragement to find out what sexuality you are by allowing more than one virginity with more than one orifice with both male and female, that pregnancy can be avoided by using a different orifice, and that techniques and aids – including for “acceptable” masochistic sex – could be found on online helpfully linked, and we can show you how to avoid your parents discovering any of this.

So sexual experimentation was encouraged. Permission was given to “discover” whether you were heterosexual, homosexual or bisexual. Ultimately you could be whatever “gender” you liked despite your birth sex and physical anatomy (and genetics) along a spectrum of genders and that you could change your gender whenever you liked.

And somehow, when we were asleep, moves came to change our birth certificates to eliminate sex “assigned at birth” from the certificate. Also of course, substitution of mother and father with “Parent 1 and parent 2”. (How was it that such legislation has been passed and is still being pushed? Yes, it is and was by wilfully ignorant MPs who blindly supported the anti-discrimination logic of the LGBTI agenda.)

We warned our MPs and the public of the consequences of legalising same-sex marriage but we were told there were none, that this was a step that needed to be made to counter discrimination against same-sex attracted people and that legal safeguards would be introduced to protect freedom of speech, freedom to believe, freedom to teach and freedom to act and live accordingly in our culture and occupations.

And now we know these freedoms are under threat – despite international treaties that clearly state these rights.

What are the current specific battle fronts?

Premature sexualisation of our children has intensified through our schools, pre-schools and media but the two main fronts that we must now battle in our parliaments, in our schools, and in our homes “around the kitchen table” are

  • our freedom to believe, speak, teach and live what we believe
  • to be whatever gender you like – with all the lifetime consequences of this – with the accusation of being a child abuser if we do not affirm this process, ultimately with the threat of having children taken from us.

Why “around the kitchen table”? Because the stated sadness of the retiring president of the Australian Human Rights Commission, Professor Gillian Triggs, was that “you can say what you like around the kitchen table”, her regret being that the AHRC did not get this far in eliminating wrong teaching and discrimination. One would hope that she was joking but given the history and the serious responses of many commentators it would seem not.

So, what can we do? Yes, we must be a Voice. Yes, there have been many valiant Australian voices in this battle. We give honour to the many who have been at the forefront of this battle and the books that have been rapidly produced to educate us in this serious conflict of worldviews.

In our connections with the public, with our schools – state and private – we can all be a voice and in terms of informing and teaching in our churches and Sunday Schools and young people’s work it is essential to be involved.

But most of all we must win “around the kitchen table” in our homes, in our parenting.

We can be very grateful to Professor Gillian Triggs for highlighting this fundamental battleground focus against totalitarianism. This is where we must win for the sake of our children.

The rest of this short paper then is about what we model and what we teach “around the kitchen table” with an emphasis on transgenders.

OK, so what is needed – and for some was always there – over and above normal “good” Christian parenting? Over and above seeking for our children to grow in the “nurture and admonition” of the Lord? Over and above loving our children, spending time with them, teaching and memorising Scripture, praying with them, agonising with them in times of rejection or conflict with others?

In a word – Celebrate! Even with joy!

Celebrate creation, not just teach it and point out the magnificence of design and beauty and give thanks for it, but actually celebrate. Jump up and down and get excited about concepts of “irreducible complexity” and how God might have done it and the pleasure He had in doing it.

Celebrate the child, giving praise to God for the gift that He has given to us as well as the gifts He has given to the child and making him/her so special. Loving the child just as they are and who they were created to be, not just for what your child has done although we must give praise for that too – but for who your child is. Yes, jump up and down and get excited with your child giving the praise to God.

Affirm and celebrate purpose for your child in reading (and celebrating!) God’s word to us e.g. in Psalm 139.

Extol and celebrate the wonder of design in all of nature pointing all the time to the God who did it. Get excited about male and female and the reproduction – in kind – of the species. Get excited about your child’s boyhood or girlhood and that this was determined too. Celebrate masculinity and femininity.

And in all of this and underlying it, Celebrate God, the Giver and Designer. The Beginning and the End. The Father of the Lord Jesus Christ who gave His life that we might live. Get excited – and stay excited – about this too with your child.

Celebrate and teach truth.

We should be certain in our own minds as to God’s truth so that we can effectively communicate this in our conversations and teaching and correcting if needed. The Creator genius made male and female. There is no biological spectrum.

Yes, there are spectrums of personality and character within these biological poles. Yes, we can celebrate the “tom-boy” freedom of the girl and admire and love her and fall “in love” with her but she will always be gloriously female – even in adulthood and the mother of a family. And we can appreciate and admire the sensitivity and gentleness of the male who can also have huge strength of character in putting wrongs right and leading our world. Thank God for these differences. Celebrate.

But to then classify these differences as being fluid or dynamic “genders” along a spectrum using such terms (believe it or not) as masculine and feminine (how weird is that when they are trying to neuter those terms) and then to reinforce (always, never to give light to the situation) these artificial constructs by “treating” with hormones or the amputation of sexual organs into – wait for it – the newly fixed pseudo-biological polar opposites of male and female is a mind-boggling exercise and an abuse.

When the situation is confused and when your two-year-old boy tells you that he is a girl, what are you going to say? Will you tell him that’s OK and that no one should tell him otherwise, or will you pick him up, love him and tell him he is welcome to like girl things and pretend at times he is a girl but that you love him as “your boy” and he will always be your boy and that you are so proud of him?

And when your six-year-old girl tells you that because she has so much fun with boys that she thinks – like the school teacher told her she could – she is really a boy, what are you going to say? Will you say “of course, that’s OK and you can continue to work that out for yourself” or will you say that you love your tom-boy little girl and you are so pleased she can do boy things and even think like a boy, but “you will always be my precious beautiful, wonderful little girl” and that she may even grow up into a beautiful queen and yet always be adventurous and mischievous in the way she can think.

And, as appropriate, point out the errors and false teaching that are around, that create confusion directly in opposition to God and finally, if needed, to be wary of rebelling against God’s Creation. Continue to pray openly and with your child about all such things

Appendix 1: A Disclaimer

I hope this short paper will be of use in stimulating discussion. Although I have talked in public – and many times in my 50 years in the consulting room – on parenting issues including “A Safe Place for our Children”, I do not pretend special authority in this area. We count ourselves fortunate in the family we have and thank God for His grace in helping us in the parenting journey. Our family backgrounds and our friends have been a part of this journey. Thank you, Lord.

I am also painfully aware that sometimes it seems no matter how “good” the loving Christian parenting is that children turn away from family, from Christian values, and from God. Yes, there may be family of origin background factors – even genetic – that we do not and should not pretend to understand (that being too hurtful), but sometimes we must just regard as a “mystery” and continue to pray for their salvation and welcoming into heaven where ultimate healing and restoration takes place. And pray with and support the parents.

Appendix 2: re celebration and feelings

OK, we all have (celebrate this too) different personalities. Some of us find it hard to overtly celebrate, yes, being thankful to God for His goodness and grace and love and expressing this continually – in our weakness – in word and song and in our writing but miss celebration, what I would call a more effusive declaration of praise and deliberate joy and excitation with the ability to transmit this sense to others.

Is this too hard? Is it possible for us of quiet personalities? Is it hypocritical to celebrate when we find it hard to feel it? No, praising our child, praising God, even celebration, are things we must do independent of feelings and as we do this – particularly in concert with others – so the feeling of joy may or may not also be restored.

There is quiet joy and there is effusive joy felt and experienced. Ultimately it may be as with Amy Carmichael “Joy is not jolliness; joy is not gush, but joy is acquiescence to God’s will”.  Or, as a free paraphrase of Psalm 84v10, “I’d rather be here with You, my Lord and my God, in the valley, than anywhere else without You” – and celebrate even that. For further discussion of depression and joy see Understanding Depression – A Christian Perspective

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