One of the many gigs I have is doing some content producing for a couple of outlets. This means that every day, I “surf the net” for new information so that they can constantly be “in the know”. Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve noticed something that has been a bit of a pattern … the topic of virginity.

First there’s the young woman who put her virginity basically on an auction (or is it chopping?) block. Maybe some of you heard of her. She “attempted” to sell it for $780K but was duped and so now it’s back on the market again. Looka here. I’ll say this: Once you put a price tag on your body, it definitely diminishes some of its value BUT giving up mine gave me a drug-dealing boyfriend, a night in prison, an abortion and some other stuff that takes too long to mention. What that news story reminded me is what I Corinthians 7:23 tells us all: We are bought with a price; we do not need to be a slave among men. In other words, our bodies are invaluable. More than a million bucks (or $780K for that matter) and definitely more than some random guy. It’s worth waiting until marriage for.

Then I read about Kendall Jenner. Well, actually I saw Kendall Jenner. When TMZ announced on her 18th birthday several weeks back that she was officially old enough to do porn (SMH), I had no idea that it would be a slick prediction that she would release a picture that revealed her nipples. I’m not sure if she’s still a virgin, but I do know that she’s too beautiful, too young…too precious for all of the world to be gawking at her.

And then I peeped a piece on Salon’s website entitled “My Abstinence-Only Education”. Yeah. I’ll share an excerpt of it and let you decide if the author had a good experience or not:

“’Sex is like glue, Jessica,’ my mother said, demonstrating her point in the living room, after we arrived home. She held up two sheets of construction paper, the white presumably representative of me, and the red ‘your husband,’ she said. With glue, she pressed the two sheets together and twisted her palms. When she pulled the sheets apart, a rip began in the middle and by the end, there were only tatters of paper abundant with holes, frayed red throughout. ‘See,’ she said, holding up the sheets proudly, ‘bloodied, damaged and destroyed.’ I was horrified.”

I know a lot of church kids who are equally as horrified by the “fire and brimstone” or “Don’t bring a baby in this house” or “You’re gonna get an STD” approach that they receive. Adults, we would make a far better impression on the kids in our lives if we would teach sex’s purpose more than its consequences. The “downside” has its place, but God never wanted anyone to be scared of sex. Just respectful of it.

And then I read an article that did make me smile. According to a piece that ran in PS Mag, guess what? Over half of all teenagers are virgins:

“In fact, college students aren’t as sexually active as the moralizing makes it seem. And neither, it turns out, are teenagers. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 57 percent of girls and 58 percent of boys age 15 to 19 have never had penile-vaginal intercourse. Moreover, the percent of teenagers that have had intercourse has been dropping consistently over the last 20 years.”

(Yes, I did peep that it specified intercourse only. We’ll have to address that another time.)

And why did it make me smile? Because despite all that the media is saying, all of what celebrities are doing, all of the temptations they have in their space, there are still some young people, for whatever the reason, who are waiting. And that reminded me that as much as we focus on the ones who are having sex, we need to be giving our salute of respect by acknowledging and honoring those who are virgins. Because no matter what the world may say and how many lies it may tell, VIRGINITY IS STILL A BIG DEAL. Giving yourself to someone is a big deal. It always has been. It always will be. (I Corinthians 6:16-20)

So talk to the young people in your space about virginity. Get their thoughts on it. Share yours. Be honest.

The more we celebrate the sacredness of who they are, the more apt they will be to do the same.