Responses - Advocacy / Dating / Instruction & Teaching Abstinence

Experiences of an Abstinence Instructor: Students Exchange Paraphernalia for Chastity

Students Exchange Paraphernalia for their Commitment to Chastity

In this day and age, our young people are absolutely inundated with sexual temptations.

The movies and internet are full of sexual images, ideas, and innuendos; musicians include sexually implicit lyrics; primetime tv shows portray promiscuous lifestyles as the norm; and even our government leaders have been exposed as leading immoral lives.

It's little wonder that our teenagers are finding it almost impossible to stay pure and have chaste relationships…

Jason Evert, with his fresh and honest approach to chastity, has proven time and again that he is able to connect with modern teens. As one girl put it, "I've never had anyone say anything like that to me about how valuable chastity is. I've always had the 'don't have sex, you'll die' talk. Never has anyone put it in such an awesome perspective."

For over 6 years, Evert has spoken to students about the physical and spiritual importance of leading a chaste life.

His talks have such an impact on his audiences that he is always swarmed by students afterwards. They are anxious to share with him how his talk has changed their lives and how they have found the strength to face their faults and leave their former way of life. Often these students wait for hours after the talk, just to give Evert a few words of gratitude and share with him their past history.

A New Development

Lately, there has been a new development in these post-presentation meetings. This year, along with spoken words of gratitude, the students have also started giving Evert tangible signs of their commitment to change their ways and leave past lives behind.

Lately, there has been a new development in these post-presentation meetings. This year, along with spoken words of gratitude, the students have also started giving Evert tangible signs of their commitment to change their ways and leave past lives behind.

According to Evert, this new trend "began with one girl in tears, ripping off her Playboy necklace, giving it to me, and saying 'Thank you. I'm so done.'

A while later, I mentioned her at another assembly, and students began following her lead. In 2006, Evert received 15 Playboy Bunny belly-button rings, 2 Playboy Bunny belts and one purse, about 3 dozen condoms, dozens more birth control pill packets, and a host of other "trinkets". One girl gave Evert her woven black necklace, which she said used to be worn by prostitutes.

Trinkets are not the only thing students are discarding. Another development involves students who are hooked on pornography. Quite often, they throw it all away after hearing Evert's advice.

One young man wrote, "I want to thank you for your speech. It was very meaningful to me. Pornography has been a part of my life for a while. I have never talked about it with anyone (I didn't know who to talk to, for one), and I never really thought of it as bad. After your talk, I realized how horrible it is. I went home, took everthing pornographic that I had, and threw it away."

Another young man wrote, "Before your talk, I was a guy who looked at porn. I couln't help myself. It was like satan urging me and I let him in. I was a porno maniac. After your talk, I even had a movie I was going to watch, but I threw it away. And I thank you for that."

Another male student wrote, "Hey, thanks for all the help. It really helped me to talk to you. When I got home, I got my pronography (without looking at it) and trashed it."

Initially, most teens are anything but eager listerners. Many have admitted to being forced by their parents to attend the talk; some admit they intended to sit in the front row and make fun of Evert the whole time.

Evert told of a group of girls who were planning to protest his talk by putting condoms on lockers but decided to postpone their protest until after the assembly.

"When the talk was over, a girl from the group gave me a paper bag and asked me to open it later. When I got to the airport, I opened it, and found in it a long thank you letter, her prescription for the morning after pill, and the 28 condoms they were going to use for their protest. She said the talk changed her mind and the minds of all her friends, and now they didn't want the condoms anymore. They wanted to start over."

A visit to Evert's office yields the disturbing yet hopeful sight of all the paraphernalia he has gathered over the past year. He keeps these items in plain sight as a constant reminder of why he is fighting the battle for chastity. They help to remind him why he puts so much time and effort into this effort. When he sees the tangible symbols of the devastated lives these children used to lead, and hears of their promises to leave their former ways of life, he knows this work must continue.

Evert has devoted his life to instilling in these confused teens an appreciation and respect for the chaste life. He hopes to continue to open the hearts and minds of young audiences, giving these young people the strength to accept the truth about their sexuality and their choices, and to turn away from the destruction in their lives.

One young woman sums it all up with her words to Evert: "You were raw. That's what we need. We don't need the flowered up version but the honest truth. I write to you not only to say 'thank you', but to say, 'please don't stop, keep speaking, reach out, we are listening.'"

[Nov/Dec 2006, ICA]