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This isn’t one of those cutesy “saving myself for marriage! I’ve seen sex portrayed as a piece of tape that gets less sticky every time it’s stuck and unstuck from something, as a rose that gets a little more frail with every hand that caresses it. I’m not saying that I can’t wait to be married and have sex within the confines of a committed Christian marriage. Or, if I have to wait, I’d like to wait only as long as it takes me to walk out the front door, catch a bus downtown, find a likely candidate, and bat a sexual home run. I’ve read (and believed) the biblical case against premarital sex. When I say I want to have sex, I don’t just mean it in the “holy” way, either. I’ve heard more versions of the Christian abstinence talk than I care to count.
This is why, as a single Christian guy, I’ve never had sex.
This is why, for as long as God calls me to be single, I never plan to. It’s that I’ve chosen to pursue another longing instead. SEE ALSO: Living in Purity in an Impure World Here’s the problem with the way the church so often talks to single men about sex, the way we so often talk to ourselves and one another.
We talk about it in the negative, as if we’ve swallowed the playbook from Coach Carr’s health class in the movie becomes the focal point of the story we tell ourselves, the refrain of our spiritual soundtrack. We try to capture them like bugs in a jar, hoping that if we keep them contained long enough, they’ll eventually suffocate. For one thing, it can quickly turn into bitterness toward the whole idea of sex.
We can come to resent our married sisters and brothers for enjoying an intimacy we’ve been called to refuse.
We can become so caught up in the dangers of sex that we threaten to call God a liar for creating the original sexual act and declaring, “It is good.” But I also object to the “don’t-have-sex” approach for a less philosophical and more immediate reason: SEE ALSO: Christian Dating Myths: All Guys Want is Sex It doesn’t work. The more attention I give to sex, the greater my desire for sex becomes.
The more I think about what shouldn’t be in my brain, the more firmly it settles into my brain—like that classic trope of childhood, where you tell someone not to think about polar bears or elephants or unicorns and then ask them what they’re thinking about.
In the same way, ironically, the very times I try hardest to “beat this desire” are the times it seems most likely to crush me. I’m not saying I have a foolproof strategy for resisting sexual temptation all figured out.
I’ve watched videos and taken vows and joined accountability groups.
I know all the reasons to say no to sex as a single man. I want to be totally sold out in obedience to the God of the universe.
SEE ALSO: 3 Ways to Pursue Purity in Your Dating Relationship And some days, God forgive me, I just don’t care about any of it. I want to be so in love with Him, so obsessed with Him, that every other desire pales in comparison.
Some days it seems like every well-meaning abstinence campaign only increases my appetite. If following Jesus means saying no to sex for as long as I’m single, even for my entire life, I want to be at peace with that.Tags: Adult Dating, affair dating, sex dating