Yes. You read that correctly.
Today we're discussing 50 Shades.
I didn't want to blog about the topic.Part of the reason was that in May when most people were blogging about the topic, I was just starting my internship at a church for the summer. I knew that people from that church would be reading my blog and I didn't want the first thing that they saw when they got to my blog to be about sex (especially if there were middle school girls googling my blog...awkward much?). So, I just put the blog idea in the back of my head and decided that it wasn't the time for that kind of post. I wanted to play it "safe". I didn't want to offend anyone. I didn't want to make a big deal over something like this. But, I'm starting to realize that we DO need to make a big deal about this. 10 weeks later, this trilogy is still at the top of Bestseller lists. It hasn't faded into the background. While I thought that ignoring the series (and not giving it more attention) would be the answer, after some interesting questions from middle school girls at camp, I'm realizing that ignoring the problem is not the solution.
As a senior in college, I expected to have this whole 50 Shades business pushed in my face. The fact that people my age are reading the series is mildly disturbing. But, I can ignore that. Is it weird that some of my favorite mommy bloggers that profess to be Christians blog about how wonderful the series is and how it "really helped their marriage"? YES! (Side note- If your marriage is really struggling THAT much that you'd resort to THIS, I'm going to recommend you drop the 50 Shades and pick up the Bible. I'm not married, but I do know that I serve a God that can do miracles, and HIS WORD is where I'd want to turn in times of trouble. Just saying.) But, I'm not exactly normal. I am the girl that is madly in love with skorts. I'm the girl that collects children's books like nobody's business. The fact that I'm not into a book series, isn't anything new and exciting. I'm used to ignoring books that I have no business reading. But, you get my middle school baby girls involved? I
I'm not going to go into all the reasons why you shouldn't read this book. There's plenty of amazing posts already written (like this one by Erin), and I don't have much new to add to the argument. I could think for a really long time, and I don't think I'd come up with a reason why I should read this series. But, I can think of ONE really good reason- a reason that isn't shared a lot. I truly believe that the best way to show what it means to be a Christian and live a Christian life is to live your life as an example. Living a life of purity is an amazing model for younger girls to follow. I don't have to go up to the girls I work with and say "I messed up. But, you shouldn't.". I have the amazing privilege to be able to share with these girls about how you can be twenty-two and still never been kissed. I can share with these girls that YES, you CAN make it through your teenage years without having sex. You will survive. Is being twenty-two, unmarried, not even in a relationship where I thought I'd be? Not exactly. That wasn't part of my four year plan- but it WAS a part of God's magnificent plan. It was his plan for me to get to share with these girls about purity. While it angers me that these little girls have knowledge of these books, I'm so happy that God brought me to them this summer so that I can share the flip side. I'm so glad that he allowed me to be able to share with them how these books aren't appropriate reading for them. I'm glad he let me share with them that the relationship modeled in 50 Shades isn't the type of relationship that God intends for us to have.
Now, maybe you're asking what you SHOULD be reading. I'll have you know that I just finished Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers and it's definitely no 50 Shades. It's much better written (or so I've heard) and it has a love story that points back to God. It models that kind of relationship I think that God intends us to have. So, if you're looking for some reading material- that's going to be my recommendation.