Nobody Told Me

This morning, I’ll be at the crisis pregnancy center … ministering to women and families in need of encouragement, support, and truth.   My friend, Melissa Neshdahl, shares my heart for crisis pregnancy ministry and I’m so happy to welcome her to my blog today!

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Friends in Christ,

My name is Melissa Nesdahl and I’m honored to be guest posting here on Teri Lynne’s wonderful blog (Don’t you all just love her?!).  Her passion challenges us to dig deeper into His Word, inspiring us all to lead more Godly, enriched lives.

You come to this blog because you want to hear more about lopsided living, marriage, parenting, priorities, and spiritual disciplines.  So, what am I doing here?

Well, like you I am an adult Christian woman striving to live out my faith life to the fullest. I want people to see me/my name and immediately recognize the spiritual fruit and blessing that comes from a life in Christ. Beyond that, I work to help youth grasp this message so that in their formative years they can stand strong in the Lord and resist worldly temptations.

To accomplish that, I write with Internationally known abstinence educator Pam Stenzel. Recently, we released our first book together entitled Nobody Told Me: What You Need to Know About the Physical and Emotional Consequences of Sex Outside of Marriage (Regal Press).

Teens today are often rushed into making adult choices without complete awareness of healthy boundaries. And, the choices they make today will affect each of these cornerstones tomorrow.

  • Lopsided Living – How does His personal love for me affect what choice I make now?  How do I live out my values in a culture that often differs?  And, how do I receive His grace freely offered to me if I’ve had a sinful sexual past?
  • Marriage- What is God’s design for relationships?  How do previous relationships impact my future marriage?  What can I do in my teen years to strengthen my marriage that is years down the road?
  • Priorities- Am I going to trust “safe” in the eyes of culture or safe as God has defined it?  How can I show that God is first in my life?  How do I say “no” if someone pressures me?  How do I talk to my parents?  What steps do I need to take today to have a healthy future?
  • Spiritual Disciplines- What are the safe dating boundaries that I must establish?  What is true “love?”  How far is too far (physically)?  I’ve stood strong, how do I continue to?  I’ve made a mistake, how do I stand strong in the future?
  • Parenting- For teens facing an unplanned pregnancy:  What choice am I going to make for myself and my child?  How will it affect my future?

These questions and more swirl through the minds of developing adolescents often times before their faith is mature, and they need helpful, honest, accurate Godly answers NOW.

To help strengthen students growth in their faith and make right choices from this day forward, Pam and I took years worth of teens’ shared stories and questions (to keep it in their authentic voice) about God’s design for sex, Scriptural encouragement, media influence, peer pressure, abuse, pregnancy, STDs, emotional heartache, and choosing abstinence until marriage and formatted in a way teens like to communicate. Using a fun Facebook-like style, we meet teens (and all who love them) where they are at and provide them with the answers they need so that they aren’t the next to tearfully say to God, their parents, a physician, or a future spouse, “Nobody told me. I didn’t know.”

The best part about this book is that it is applicable to every student regardless of the choices they have made. For those who have abstained, this book will offer a window into the heart of their peers, provide answers to difficult questions they still might have (and be afraid to ask), strengthen them to remain pure until marriage, and offer for them suggestions to help them live that out. If, on the other hand, a young person has made mistakes this book is still for them (making it unique to others) because they will hear stories of young people struggling right along with them, but laced within the message is clarity where there was confusion, hope where there was pain, experienced forgiveness from a loving God, understanding that their past choices don’t have to define their future ones, and practical steps to redeeming their future.

For parents, youth workers, crisis pregnancy workers, mentors, etc. this book is an excellent help because we live in a rapidly changing world. The consequences that they may have faced as a teen are no longer the same as the teens of today. The number of STDs has risen, media exposure delivers wildly different messages, and the people in the home and church haven’t always known how to effectively deliver an abstinence-based message that is both glorifying to God and powerful enough to pack a punch with the students who hear it. This book will place them inside of today’s teenage experience and bring them up to speed on current statistics to help them effectively communicate a message that empowers the teen they love to have a healthy future.

With God’s Word as our guide, we have created a book inspiring awesome, Godly relationships (when the time is right) to any male or female 12 and up. In the process, personal faith with blossom, self-confidence will grow, respect for oneself and the people around them will become the expectation, and a life of wholeness will result.
As mature, adult Christians, we all have prayerful hearts that every student will hear and stand on this counter-culture message. Please join me in encouraging the living, breathing faith of our young people – the kind that makes the feeling of lopsided living in teenage years a little less awkward, that prepares them for a healthy marriage, that helps them to think through the role of parenting (as well as better prepares you for the tough job when it comes to talking about sex with your children!), and helps each boy and girl define priorities while living out Godly spiritual disciplines rather than falling for the lies of our culture. In doing so, we will create bridges for better communication in our homes, churches, and CPCs, creating a healthier face of tomorrow.

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Melissa Nesdahl is a happily married wife, mother, author, writer, and volunteer who believes that when people recognize their identity and value in Christ they will experience life to its fullest. Combining her passion to write with her love of sharing Truth, Melissa frequently updates her blog, writes product and curriculum with Pam Stenzel, and contributes to ModSquad. Melissa has served as a crisis pregnancy center counselor since 1999 and currently serves on the Board of Directors.

Thank you, Melissa, for sharing with us about this amazing book!  I am looking forward to reading it {and reviewing} very soon.  I also encourage you to check out Melissa’s blog as well as Pam’s website … these women have such beautiful hearts for the Lord.   And, you can find other parents seeking to encourage their children in sexual abstinence by joining the Nobody Told Me Facebook page!

How have you broached the subject of sex with your children?

2 Replies to “Nobody Told Me”

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