Last time, we explored the idea that abstinence preserves the best sexual health experienced by Christian singles. We talked about how sex flourishes shamelessly and unhindered in a committed, biblical marriage where both partners honor Jesus and each other.
A few of us have been able to hang on to our virginity, but man, is it tough! We shudder at the unthinkable — that we might not be able to have sex for years and don’t know if we can make it.
Many of us have lost our virginity, and the devil beats us up for it every day. Or we were married before and continue to feel the pressure to submit to our desires and physical cravings for intimacy.
It doesn’t help that the world is telling us to go ahead and do it because, after all, it’s our natural desire, and we are not expected as humans with hormones to hold ourselves back from our our natural desires.
No matter which category we find ourselves in, it’s very difficult and disconcerting to be asked to honor God with our bodies.
If the Bible tells us to do it, and we can do all things through Christ, it must be possible. How can we regain our sexual health and honor God with our bodies?
How to Regain Sexual Health
Start with a re-evaluation of your view of God, marriage and sex.
1. View of God: Does God really love me? Is He still mad at me for my sexual failures? Why would He delay my getting married? What is His plan for my life? What if it doesn’t include marriage? Am I good with that?
2. View of marriage: What kind of marriage did my parents have? What can I learn from my past and my parents’ past? What are my reasons for getting married besides sex? What is my philosophy for staying married once I finally get there? How ready do I feel for marriage? What am I bringing to a potential marriage?
3. View of sex: How is sex outside of marriage different than inside of marriage? What negative factors influence the enjoyment of sex in a marriage, and what am I doing to remove those hindrances from my life? What am I willing to do to bring my fleshly desires under God’s control?
Find Other Ways to Connect
Intimacy is the ultimate goal of a relationship, and you can create this without having sex. In fact, the more non-sexual connections you form with your date and the stronger they are, the stronger the intimacy becomes that will guard your future marriage. These connections and anything positive you have in common are like depositing money in the bank!
Other ways to connect include:
- Old-fashioned talking.
- Doing chores together.
- Writing real notes and letters on real paper.
- Going to church and Bible study together.
- Communicating on social media.
- Non-sexual affection (touching).
- Compiling a “fun list” of things to do together.
- Resolving conflicts quickly and positively.
- Praying with one another (but not too long or too late at night!).
- Keeping promises.
- Memorizing scripture together. (I still remember passages I memorized with my very first boyfriend over 36 years ago!).
- Respecting each other’s boundaries, especially sexually (do not defraud, 1 Thessalonians 4:3-8).
- Healthy humor.
- Developing a new, healthy habit/hobby together.
- Becoming vulnerable and real in sharing feelings and fears.
- Showing each other courtesy and respect.
- Studying the Bible together.
- Getting rid of a critical, condemning spirit.
- Ministering together.
- Playing ice-breakers and conversation-starting games.
- Caring for each other’s family members and friends.
- Learning each others’ love languages. (If you don’t know what they are, start here: http://www.5lovelanguages.com/) .
- Quality time together means not letting your devices interrupt your time!
Develop a Fortress of Accountability
Landlords created fortresses centuries ago to protect their families and their properties by keeping intrusive or hostile people out.
Both of you need to have a fortress of prayer warriors and accountability partners. They can help protect both your relationship and your individual hearts from intrusive fleshly desires and hostile enemies with their thoughts and temptations.
You know how hard it is to be objective when you’re in love. Having other godly couples, married and dating, as part of your accountability circle is a great way to develop wisdom, transparency, protection and clarity in your dating relationship.
When it becomes apparent that the relationship should become committed — even if you haven’t fully decided that marriage is the intended outcome — It’s also not a bad idea to go through godly relationship counseling.
It is possible to make it to the marriage altar sexually healthy, and I know you can do it!