sex. the series.

So you did the deed, before the deed?

No need to panic... you are not the only Christian who has this skeleton in their closet. From the garden of Eden to the social context of this post-modern world, sex before marriage has lost it's social stigma from the time of the ancient, to a time where you can now download an app to meet someone for casual sex. Sex, is so readily available for people and it has lost it's eternal and holy purpose. 

Sex before marriage? ... Well, it ain't nothing out of the ordinary these days.

I grew up being educated about sex through what I read in Cosmopolitan and Dolly magazines, and also TV shows or movies. My understanding was that 'you have sex because you love someone'. When I went to a church service and heard for the first time that sex was created for marriage, I was at shock level 10 (you could have thrown an egg at me and I would not have moved). I thought I knew a lot about the world as a teenager (didn't we all?) but this was something that was puzzling to me. Why was I not told this before? Why was this not shown to me? And why is it only within marriage, when in fact our world is clearly encouraging the exact opposite? 'Sex for love' was so ingrained in me that it took me some time to get over the shock news.

Much to my dismay, later in life, hearing the news still didn't have much of an effect on my approach towards love and sex. 

Our world doesn't set us up to win the idea and lifestyle of purity, but God's kingdom does and His Word can empower you to win and steward this area well. In my very early 20's I read a book called, 'Kiss the Girls and made them cry' by Lisa Bevere. I heard Lisa talking about her journey in this area on a TV interview and when she said she wrote a book about it - I had to find it. I would recommend this book to those who have lost their purity, for whatever reason and want to understand more about the spiritual side of sex and how to receive healing in this area.

I've read many blogs and stories on people winning at the purity challenge, which is wonderful and great, but it made me feel excluded because that wasn't my story. 
So what does it mean for the single girl or boy who didn't win in this area? And how do we, the ones who didn't choose that path, not feel guilt, comparison or shame next to the ones who did?

This series is dedicated to the Christian girl, boy or couple, who had sex before marriage or is having sex before marriage.

The bible clearly defines sex to be within the confines of the marriage covenant. So, because of that it is clear to say that sex outside of marriage is a sin. Sex itself is not a sin - it is a holy act but it has been cheapened by the world we live in. 

Sex affects the deepest parts of you in every way; body, mind, spirit and soul. I remember times when after a night out, the next morning I would wake up, go to the mirror and wouldn't recognise who I was and be uncertain of who I was becoming. And then I would go to church and feel so condemned, knowing that God knew full well what part of my life was like. 

I've had many conversations now with young people, single and dating, asking me questions about how I handled boundaries in my relationships and every time they come to me I am straight up honest and I tell them..."I am not an example for you... my life cannot teach you how to be strong in this area. I wasn't set up to win in this part of my life." 
So I go on and tell them my journey, but it is not a conversation that ends in lost hope. It's a conversation that still encourages them to pursue the path of purity.

Being accountable to someone you trust is important and its one thing that I didn't do. Now, I can't tell you or give you tips or advice on how to be strong in this area. All I can say on the matter is that if you can save it for marriage - do it. With all your might and with the help of God and good people around you - do it. It is possible - I know people who are winning when it comes to the purity of their life. And also, if you're single and have already had sex and still hope to meet the one, you can still seek purity. And to the couple still having sex but wanting so much to put God first in your relationship, find good and trustworthy counsel - you can still seek purity for both of you in this area. 

So, to you who reads this and who has done the deed (sex) before the deed (marriage), here is the good news. With Jesus, we have a second chance. You still have the choice to choose a life of purity but you can't do it on your own - you need Jesus and you need good people around you. 

God still sees you as 'pure.' I mentioned earlier how going to church, I felt condemnation... but it was guilt and shame that I put on myself. God never made me feel that way, in fact, I always felt more love and more grace come from Him whenever I wanted to come near.

There is grace upon grace upon grace for you. God does not despise you. He loves you, unconditionally.

So now that I have admitted to having struggled with this journey through my singleness and dating life, the next part of this series I want to discuss is 'Sex within Marriage: a Married Woman's journey.' In this post, I hope to share with you more about what sex is like on the other side...

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