Are you a desperate daughter eager to convince your overly protective (but very LOVING...) dad to let you date that “someone special”? Are you a desperate dad, terrified that your daughter is growing up, wondering how to help her make wise decisions as she manages those dangerous years until she gets married? Wondering how to have “that conversation” to establish an “understanding” with those hormone-crazed teen boys, to help keep your daughter safe, yourself not arrested for being overly protective, and those boys in one piece (last part is optional...)?“You're Welcome to Date My Daughter IF...” is a little hand-book that grew out of just those kinds of worries. It started as a personal journey that became a powerful Bible Study dealing with sexuality as one of the crowning gifts of God's creation-- when preserved as the treasure of marriage. Parents, pastors and church leaders who once could count on social and community support outside the church walls to be allies in preserving purity and decency for their daughters now find themselves like salmon fighting their way upstream against powerful cultural currents. Even within many churches, those eager to support traditional sexual values preserving sexual expression for marriage are fighting a counter-cultural battle, not to mention the blatant attacks on purity from all corners of society and the ever-intrusive digital media in which we all constantly swim. Finding honest, forthright (and affordable) tools that parents and churches can both use without apology for content, that is effective, orthodox and even fun to use, is almost as miraculous as Jesus feeding the multitudes.This book was written to help fill this gap and need. Written first from a dad's perspective, but also from the perspective of a pastor that remembers all too well the power and pervasiveness of teen hormones, it is hoped that this can not only be a personal resource for families, but a tool that can be used in group settings and bible studies as well. Youth groups, parents groups, men's groups, even around which to build new short term outreach groups for families in the community sharing these concerns, all might find the format (and great price!) of this handbook to be very attractive, useful and user-friendly, both for church folk, and for the not-so-churchy type.This handbook and Bible study is built around personal stories and an the all-too-familiar acquaintance with the power of teen hormones recalled in vivid and sometimes embarrassing detail. It is brutal honesty about sexuality and biblical wisdom, a helpful reminder to parents who might think “their children” too innocent for such deceptive hormonal drives, and teens who might think they can pretend with themselves and their parents to the “innocence” of their own behavior and intentions. A great resource for teens, for families, for men's ministries (it might be too direct for our ladies!) for other church or youth groups, and as outreach tools for those churches daring enough to be honest about sexuality.Written by an Army Chaplain while deployed and worried about his two precious teenagers, Rev. Lewis has been married for 25 years to his “summer fling” that didn't quite turn out that way, and has served churches and ministries beyond the local church for 20 years. He is completing a PhD in Cultural Foundations in Education.read more
J. Richard. Lewis, L.S.M.., M.Div., (and finishing PhD in education at Kent State)
AKA: Rev. Jim, Chaplain Lewis [OH Army National Guard, Chaplain (Major)], PJ (Pastor Jim), JJ (Just Jim), my mom still calls me Jimmy, “Jimbo” is reserved for brother and sister, or “call me anything, just don't call me late for dinner!”
A long time ago in a galaxy (or at least a state) far, far away, I was born at a very young age... Youngest of four children growing up in Florida, PK (preacher's kid) until my dad left the ministry a drunk, and PK again (mom, brother, wife and I all started seminary at the same time in 1988). I grew up in the United Methodist Church, which lived out its calling to be the Body of Christ in this world in the midst of my dad's alcoholism. For a time we were barely shy of being homeless and didn't know where the next meal was coming from-- yet God through the church carried us through.
I started my illustrious career flipping burgers at McDonalds where I learned a great work ethic that stays with me today (“if you've got time to lean, you've got time to clean...” with the bywords of Quality, Service, Cleanliness shaping everything...), and worked my way all the way up to scraping tar off the sidewalk and doing the stock truck. Great for my career, BUT not so great for my relationship with God. Joined the Navy after high school, where God finally got my attention while sitting in an empty barracks in the Philippines waiting on an early discharge. Romans 8:28 and 8:38 became my beacons through dark times.
Went to college in FL starting to explore a life of ministry. Worked at a church camp where I met a really cute girl with whom I thought I'd have a “summer fling.” Didn't work out that way-- after 3 years of dating then courtship, we married, and 25 years later after a roller coaster of ups and downs, my “summer fling” is still getting better (though I don't claim yet to really understand her very well...).
After exploring then pursuing our calling to ministry, we both started seminary in 1988, which is where our adventure and challenges really began. Our marriage almost didn't survive, but PRAYER literally brought us through. We served in a variety of church settings while in school, and four local churches full time after seminary. Served in campus ministry at Kent State where I joined the Army Reserves as a Chaplain, have had two deployments to Iraq, and am preparing for a third to Kuwait.
Along the way and after other struggles, we brought two beautiful children into the world, a daughter who is quite the athlete, now age 15, and a son, quite the intellectual and dealing with Asperger's Syndrome, now 17. For almost ten years now, Darling Wife has been on two different church staffs running their Christian Education and children's ministries, currently serving as Christian Education Director at Cuyahoga Falls First United Methodist Church. Our directions in ministry, though differing greatly in context, are both build firmly around common themes of spiritual formation.read more
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