The Cyrus Lesson

miley-cyrus-babyThe other night my Facebook newsfeed was inundated with comments about Miley Cyrus and something crazy, raunchy, etc that she did. I finally decided to Google her name and see what would pop up.

Yikes.

I’m sure by now many of you have seen the VMA “performance” that Miley was in. If you haven’t don’t look for it, your souls is better of not watching it. Lets just say she pretended to be something less than human on stage.

My first reaction to Miley’s performance was not shock, disgust or embarrassment. I was thinking to myself, how did she get to this point? Where along the way did this 20 year old think twerking (if you don’t know what this is you are better off) on stage in her underwear was the right thing to do? The sad thing is that anyone can become what Miley was on stage that night. My daughter, your daughter anyones daughter. We all have the potential to be incredible people or to chose something less…twerking.

The picture in this post is of Miley Cyrus when she was a baby. Here is a child with infinite potential in all aspects of life. A child with dignity, worth and goodness. The Miley on stage at the VMA awards is that same person. The same dignity, worth and goodness is there. I think she just forgot, or maybe was never told about it.

A few years ago Glenn Beck (*diclaimer: I am neither a fan or foe of him*) did an interview with Billy Ray Cyrus where he asked him about his daughter, Miley:

“Are you at all concerned?” Beck asked the young star’s father, Billy Ray Cyrus, at the time. “I mean, the odds of Miley turning into Ron Howard — meaning sane — pretty low. Living in Los Angeles, being a child star — hello? Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, name a million others…”

Cyrus was confident that his daughter had a “great head on her shoulders” and a “great heart.” He also explained that he tries to be her “best friend,” while letting his wife act as the disciplinarian.

“I taught them how to build a good snowman, how to ride a motorcycle, how to ride a horse, how to roast a wiener properly over a fire, and a good marshmallow,” Cyrus explained. “…But discipline I always left up to the mama. She was really, really good at that. That never was — I never was really good at that.”

There is a lesson to be learned here. Billy Ray is not to be blamed for Miley’s VMA spectacle, she is her own person and has a will and intellect to chose. One can though wonder what Miley would be like today if dad had disciplined her, told her no, change that outfit, you are grounded, don’t you ever twerk–ever!

There have been tons of articles, seminars and books that talk about the crucial role of a father in a child’s life. If you are a dad please understand this: you set the precedent to what your child will understand a man is supposed to be. You also set the precedent for helping your child discover their dignity, worth and goodness–especially a daughter. If you are a coward, lazy, angry, raunchy, immoral, good, caring, faithful, selfless…then this is what she will  understand a man to be. Why is it that every now and then we hear women say, “I just seem to attract all the losers and jerks.” The reason is probably because that is all they have seen and known.

As a Youth Minister I have ministered to some girls who have forgotten or were never told that they have dignity, worth and goodness. The majority of those girls had no fathers or if they did, were around but not fully, actively and consciously participating in their lives. So that is what they learn a man is: not around, not able to focus, not really invested in their lives.

Men, we have a responsibility to be more than a provider of house, food and education. Building snowmen, roasting marshmallows and teaching our kids how to ride a horse are great bonding experiences, but not enough for them. I realize I only have a 5 month old, but I cannot settle for anything less than my daughter recognizing that she is an unrepeatable, exquisite, beautiful human being. We must remind our children that they have dignity, worth and goodness. More importantly, we must live out dignity, worth and goodness in our everyday lives so that they can see it and understand that this is what they deserve!

If we do not…expect worse things than twerking.

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Categories: fatherhood, God, Parenting, youth ministry | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “The Cyrus Lesson

  1. humblefrier

    I curious: Why do you believe twerking on stage in her underwear was a bad thing for Miley to do?

    • Degrading, man on stage was married (not to Miley), but mostly because it speaks against her human dignity. Not to mention her actions were seeing by thousands of young girls who could see her as someone to be like.

      • humblefrier

        I’m confused, why is any of that degrading? What specifically about what she did made her worth less as a human being?

        Plus, she was confident in her body and willing to show it off, even while the public picks apart every little detail and points out her flaws. Frankly anyone who can stand up to that criticism should be an idol for girls everywhere.

  2. Werepumpkin

    Humble: degrading oneself does not make a person worth less, the same human dignity is there and will always be there. The problem is that we were designed for goodness not to glorify masturbation, the objectification of women and “doing anything we want.” The performance shows very little valuation of the worth that is there. Disregard/disrespect for said dignity is by definition degrading.

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