Tag: sex

This is awkward, but…how’s your sex life?

My wife and I had a conversation with a young married couple about sex a few weeks ago.

It was incredibly refreshing. We could be open and honest with them, and help them take steps forward in their marriage.

Creative Commons user Marc Wathieu, edits mine

Church leaders should talk with people more about sex, in a positive light.*

Most of the “sex talks” that happen with church leaders are

  • a premarital conversation that goes something like this: Don’t have sex. Quit having sex. Wait for a few more months.
  • a sermon series in the student ministry that lasts for 8 months. Think I’m joking? I’m not…I ran into a student pastor who said he’d been preaching on sex for 8 months with his students. “I think we’re just about done” he said. “I bet they’ve been done listening to you talk about it for about 8 months, because that’s way too long for students to hear their 50-somethings youth pastor talk about sex” I replied…in my head, of course.
  • an awkwardly timed, not-so-funny joke in a sermon on Sunday morning. Either you think, “Can I laugh at that in church?” or “Can I laugh at that, just to make my pastor feel better? That wasn’t funny…”

Church leaders should have more frank conversations about sex. Not in a “sex is dirty” kind of way, and not in a way that’s constantly condemning the bad things about sex. But in a way that helps a couple honor God with this area of their life.

Culture teaches us a lot about sex, most of which is glamorized, made out to be some sort of physical-only act that’s super easy for a couple to enjoy together.

It Ain’t That Easy

If you’ve been married long at all, you know that sex isn’t easy to get “right” (meaning something that’s mutually enjoying and honoring to God). More often than not, especially in the first few years of married life, sex is frustrating for husbands and wives. It’s not the beautiful act that God intended, but a point of contention. Instead of an act of union and love, it drives a wedge dissatisfaction.

And sex is so, so important to a marriage. It’ll bring a marriage down in a heartbeat if it’s not addressed. We’d be foolish to assume that all couples just know how to flourish in this area of their lives. Understanding your spouse is something that takes time…it’s not an intuitions you’re born with. As quickly as it can bring a marriage down, it can also help a marriage turn a corner. God intended sex to be an emotional, physical, and spiritual act. It’s intended to be a deeply satisfying intimacy for which no other act can substitute. (don’t believe me? Try reading Song of Solomon and not blushing)

A Little More Conversation, A Little More Action

Don’t wait for your church to have a sermon series on sex. Even if they do, it’s impossible to cover every specific issue for every couple. While there may be general problems, ideals, pitfalls to avoid, and healthy steps to take, in no way can a sermon be comprehensive. Those comprehensive questions and concerns and frustrations need to be worked out in the context of healthy relationships.

So go ahead. Ask the awkward question to someone you have a close relationship with:

How’s your sex life?

You’ll get them snickering like middle school girls. But you’ll also open up the opportunity for a beautiful conversation.

And if you’re not having good sex, it may be time to ask for some advice.

Drink water from your own cistern, And fresh water from your own well. Should your springs be dispersed abroad, Streams of water in the streets? Let them be yours alone, And not for strangers with you. Let your fountain be blessed, And rejoice in the wife of your youth. As a loving hind and a graceful doe, Let her breasts satisfy you at all times; Be exhilarated always with her love (Proverbs 5:15-19).

*Talking about sex isn’t just relegated to church leaders…all followers of Jesus should make it a point to talk openly and honestly about this issue. Church leaders especially. This blog just tends to be read by a majority of people who are, at one level or another, leaders in their local church.

* image credit; Creative Commons user Marc Wathieu, edits mine

* catch up with the “this is awkward” series HERE.

 

The power of a homely testimony

image credit: Creation Swap User Rob Gros

I grew up in a Christian home. My parents were, and still are, amazingly solid followers of Jesus. I look to them and, when I grow up, want to

  • Have a marriage like theirs
  • Follow Jesus like they do
  • Lead like they do
  • Find wisdom like they’ve found

They did a great job pointing me to Jesus and, at the ripe age of 6, I began following Him. I didn’t understand it all. But I understood enough to know that, without Jesus, I didn’t have a relationship with God. And I desperately wanted a relationship with Him!

So my journey began.

As I got into high school, I started hearing “those testimonies.” You know which ones I’m talking about. The radical conversions. The “I was a drug addict when I walked in tonight, and now I follow Jesus and I don’t even want for those drugs anymore.” The “I slept with every guy I looked at for 5 years…and now I love Jesus.”

Part of me, the sinful part of me for sure, wished I had a testimony like that. I mean, come on…I began following Jesus when I was 6. What kind of serious trouble can I get in by then? If I’d waited a few years, say, at least 10, maybe I could’ve added a bit of flair to my testimony. I wish I had a cool story. For a few reasons:

1. I bet they had a crazy amount of fun. Sure, it was empty. Sure, it didn’t ultimately satisfy. But dang, they had a good time doing it! (I know…don’t judge me. You’ve had those thoughts too). I know Christians can, and should, have fun, but…

2. They can look back on their life and assuredly say, “I’m different now that I follow Jesus.” From drugs to hugs. From passionate love with the opposite sex…to passionately following Jesus. From fights with classmates to fights with the devil. From…ok, I’ll stop. You get the picture.

That second reason really hung over me. And if I can be honest, some days it still tries to hook me in. “You’re not really different” I hear whispered. “What has Jesus really done in your life?” is shot my way. “Are you sure you’re following Jesus?” enters my doubt.

If I only had a sexy testimony!

The homely testimony

But wait. My testimony is sexy. It is radical. It is powerful.

Once I was lost, and now I’m found. Once I was an enemy, and now I’m a son. Once I was bent against God, and now He’s my friend. Once I was pointing towards an eternity apart from Jesus, and now eternity with Him has begun.

The radical part of anyone’s salvation isn’t the “sin” part. It’s not in highlighting the depth of depravity that the human soul can dive. It’s in highlighting the love of a beautiful King who’s kind enough to save a sinner like me. It’s in pointing people to a God who rescues the powerless. Pointing people to a God who is gracious enough to save someone who, at the age of 6, doesn’t even fully grasp the depth of His love. Someone who, at the age of 6, has no idea what life holds and how grace will be such a powerful part of it.

A word to the doubters

I share this because I know I’m not the only one who has doubts. I’m not the only one who doesn’t have a radical conversion story. I’m not the only one who has sinned more after I began following Jesus than before.

And I’m not the only one who needs a reminder that salvation is about highlighting the love of a good King whose willing and able to rescue.

Question:

Ever doubted?

*image credit: creation swap user Rob Gros

 

 

 

 

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