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'Created for Purity' helps parents teach sexual purity
From The Baptist Messenger, May 26, 2005
by Dana Williamson, Associate Editor

Go to most any Christian bookstore, and you will find a plethora of information for young people on sexual purity. But if you're a parent looking to teach your children about sexual purity, there is little material to be found.
     That was one of the motivations that led Josh Bullard to produce video lessons, a workbook and a leader's guide on the subject. The six-session study, 'Created for Purity' is the result of years of study and teaching by Bullard, who has taught at Christian Heritage Academy in Oklahoma City for 21 years.
     Bullard, who is the father of 10 children, said when his children started coming along, he wanted them to learn about sexual purity from him and his wife, Genel. At the same time, he was teaching a group of young singles at Del City, First Southern and a Bible class at CHA, and it was a natural progression that the subjects of sex and purity would come up. “ I was given the subject of Paul’s epistles to teach in the Bible class at CHA, and Paul talks a lot about what God has to say about keeping sexually pure,” Bullard said.
     Bullard said students who graduated from CHA began to call and ask him to come teach their parents what he had taught them. Then parents started contacting him, asking if he could teach them how to talk to their children. Through all this, Bullard began to realize the need people, especially parents, have in talking about sexual purity. So he started putting the information he has gained over the years into a form that is readily available and easy to understand.
     “ Most Christian parents realize their children are, or will be, facing sexual issues and temptations that they themselves never faced,” Bullard said. “Consequently many parents are nervous or even fearful of what the future holds for their children.” Bullard added that many parents feel they have neither the knowledge nor the tools they need to train and help their children in this area.

The video series is accompanied by a workbook.
     Bullard said he included a workbook because watching and listening are important parts of the learning process, but reading and writing help transform the head knowledge to practical application.
     Bullard emphasized that the goal of the series is not merely to gain knowledge, but to help parents teach and train their children in the area of sexual purity. “ We, as parents, want more open, honest conversation with our children, yet we are many times hesitant and uncomfortable with the subject of sex,” Bullard said. “This series is designed to help parents overcome indifference, discomfort and ignorance.”
     Bullard said God’s view of sex is not shameful or embarrassing, and that’s what children should be taught. “ Our children today receive much of their information on sex from Hollywood,” Bullard pointed out. “Hollywood spends billions to capture the hearts and minds of our children, and parents need to accept the challenge of teaching their children what God says about sex.”
     Lessons on the video include God’s View of Sex; God’s View of Sexual Purity; Physical Purity—The Progression of Physical Intimacy; Physical Purity—Three Things to Consider; Emotional Purity—Differences Between Boys and Girls, and Emotional Purity—Development of Commitment in a Relationship.
     Ray Sanders, communications team leader for the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, who helped Bullard illustrate his points through video vignettes, said Bullard’s video series goes beyond just sex to encourage purity in all areas of life. “ What he talks about is really more about living a pure lifestyle and realizing purity is something you do all your life, not just something you do until you get married,” said Sanders.
     Bullard, with his wife, Genel, and 10 children, has put his experience in teaching sexual purity into a video series for parents. From left on back row are Khurry, 9, Kylie, 17, Brant, 18, Mackenzie, 14, Preston 16, Breanna, 12, and Brooklynn, 7. Front row from left with Josh and Genel are Camp, 1, Cooper, 5, and Carson, 3.
     Through working on the project, Sanders said he became interested in what Bullard was doing, and has taken his teenage girls through a big part of it. “ I took my daughters, Lauren-Elaine, 14, and Olivia, 13, on a dinner date and presented them with purity rings,” Sanders said. “Using Josh’s illustration, I wrapped three packages, two in white.”
     Sanders said Bullard uses the illustration of what type of gift you want to give your future spouse. "He talks about the fact you can wrap your virginity up in a nice pure white package, but you want to give more than just your virginity,” Sanders reported. “It’s about a pure lifestyle, how far is too far, and what kind of a package are you going to present to your future spouse.”
     Sanders said he told his girls they could give their spouses one of the pretty white packages, or pulling another gift out of his pocket, which was tattered and torn, he said they could give this gift, which still contained virginity, but it was “beat up, battered and had been around the block.”
     “ I said you can still provide your husband with your virginity, but what I hope you will do is provide your husband with your purity,” Sanders related. “You have a choice. You can give them this pure, white gift, or you can give them the tattered one. I added that you can always be like the pure, white gift, but once you’re tattered, you can never go back to being like the pure gift.”
Sanders said the looks on their faces told him they got the message.
     “ One of the gifts Josh gave me was being able to come up with that illustration that brought the message home to my girls,” Sanders said.
Sanders noted the video is designed for parents to learn how to teach their children about sexual purity and raising children interested in the pure lifestyle.
     "Josh is the real thing,” emphasized Sanders. “He practices what he preaches. He sets a high standard, a standard God wants us to keep.”
Sanders said he and his wife are part of a small group at Bethany, Council Road, and plan to use the video series in that group. "Josh gives you practical ideas you can weave into everyday life,” Sanders noted. “Sex, purity and all the things in that area you hope for for your family are topics that make anybody a little bashful,” admitted Sanders. “But Josh has such a neat way of bringing it into everyday life. It’s a great thing for parents.”
     K.C. Maddox, youth minister at Weatherford, First, said Bullard presented his sexual purity program to about 100 junior high and high school students at his church. "Josh would be the first to tell you he’s not a youth communicator, but it was amazing to see how the kids locked in on him,” Maddox said. “I think it has a lot to do with the way he talks to them. He gives them the facts, like they are adults.”
     Maddox said he opened the session to parents, and realized this was something they needed. "It is a message we need to get to parents of young children as well as teenagers,” he said.
     Weatherford, First pastor Earl Stephenson said Bullard knows his material, is high energy and a great communicator who got his message across to both parents and teens.
     “ In my opinion, it is the best organized, most encompassing material on sexuality because it is Bible teaching and not issue based,” said Andy Wilkins, youth minister at Newalla, First. Wilkins said 35 sets of parents went through the series at his church. "It impacted the parents and helped them talk to their teens with a godly perspective,” Wilkins said. “All of the sexuality things I’ve come across for teenagers say, ‘Here’s the issue, what does the Bible say about it?’ But this series relates what the Bible says, then takes the issues and talks about how the Bible applies to them.
     "According to the parents of our teens, it’s the best thing out there,” Wilkins said. “Its more focused than any material I’ve seen.”
     For more information on the video series, contact Bullard at 1411 S.W. 58th, Oklahoma City 73119; phone 405/672-1787.