If you’ve grown up in the church at all, you’ve probably had this word shoved down your throat starting somewhere around the 5th grade and up until your wedding day (if it has occurred yet). It’s a beautiful word. When I think of it in context I think of synonyms like “clean, white, and unblemished”, but when it’s the topic of every youth event at church I do admit that it can get a little old.
With the purity talk comes a lot of “No’s!” and “Don’t do’s!” and “I wish I hadn’t’s!”. It is many times spoken from someone who made this “ultimate” mistake and is begging you not to do the same. And while I agree with all that, I also believe in grace and having real conversations. I believe in sharing the information but not needing to scare the desire for sex out of those who are single, but to instead set them up for the awesome blessing that it is in marriage.
And that’s what I want to do today. I come to you as someone who actually made it until their wedding day as a virgin, and who was blessed enough to marry a man that was a virgin as well. I come to you not with the “Oh, I wish!” or “Please don’t do what I…” but from a place of “I’m glad I did.” Let me tell you why.
Why I’m glad I waited
The wedding night was awkward and awesome.
I will have to write out our whole hysterical wedding night story sometime (minus some details, of course), but let’s just say there were a few trip ups that involved a prank from Matt’s groomsmen, a million and one bobby pins in my hair, and ordering bananas from room service because my feet were cramping so bad from my wedding shoes. We laughed then and we laugh now and I probably wouldn’t change it if I could. Ok wait, those foot cramps really did hurt… anyway. Our wedding night was not a passionate, hang from the ceiling, full pleasure event. In fact, it was physically probably some of the worst sex we’ve had. But it was beautiful. It was intimate. It was the most connected I have ever felt with anyone. It was a gift. It was a prize. We made it, and it was worth it.
I have mentioned before that our sex life did not start out that great. Intimacy wise, it was amazing. Physically? It just wasn’t working like it should and it took some medical intervention to fix that. But guess what? We didn’t know the difference. We had nothing to compare it to and because of that, it was ok. It was frustrating at times, of course. But it was our own experience and we did not know any different so it made it OK.
What’s also great is that we have nothing to compare each other to. I am the only woman that Matt has been with and he is the only man I have been with. When it comes to how things look, how we go about certain things, and how we enjoy sex, there is no comparison involved. I never have to worry about Matt thinking I’m weird because his last girlfriend never did ____ and he never has to worry about me thinking his body is sub-par because my last boyfriend was better looking in the ____ category. It’s just us and it’s pretty great.
Because we have never been with anyone else, we do not have to worry about any type of sexually transmitted diseases or emotional tie ups. I’ve found this especially nice when going through pregnancy. They literally test you for anything and everything that you can pass on to the baby, and many of those things have to do with STD’s. I am so thankful that these are not nail biter tests for me. I happily let them take my blood without worry because I know my son is completely safe from being exposed to anything of the sort.
And speaking of pregnancy? Never a thought before we were married. I can only imagine the anger and heartbreak we would experience from others (i.e. our parents… AH! Scary thought!) if this had occurred, but there was no way that it could have. We had the blessing of choosing (with God’s help, of course), when we wanted to start a family and it is a lot easier now than it ever would have been before we were married. We had many tell us the example that we were to them and/or their children (we give the glory to God for that) because of our relationship, and I know that getting pregnant would have hurt that example and witness a great deal.
As for emotions, we did not come into our marriage with a piece of our heart left with another man or woman. We do not have to deal with any hurts from the past sexually and there is a great freedom that comes with that. Please know that I do understand that some women AND men have had sexual hurts in their past that ARE NOT their fault. I am in no way speaking of that now. You are still pure in God’s eyes and if anyone has ever been sexual with you in any way that was against your will, I pray you are receiving or have received help. I am only talking about willing, sexual acts in this post. The risk you take with your heart is a huge one when having sex, and knowing that it is with someone who has committed to you forever brings a great sense of peace.
There is such joy that comes with waiting. The actual waiting process is hard and I do NOT recommend an 11 month engagement or longer like we did (God’s grace is big, let me tell you…), but the prize is so good at the end. It’s like running a marathon. It gets harder and harder as you go, but once you cross that finish line, it’s all about the glory of what you did, er DIDN’T do. It’s all about celebrating and it’s all about rejoicing. So is waiting for marriage to be sexually intimate with your mate. Not only has it allowed me to see Matt in a way that I have never seen another man (both physically and in general) but it has allowed me to connect to someone (and only ONE someone) in a way that truly blows me away. It is a connection like none other that I could ever communicate unless you have experienced it yourself.
I could go on and on and give you reasons the Bible says not to as well as statistical reasons why it’s not a good idea to be intimate before marriage, but today I simply wanted to share with you from my experience. The road we chose of purity has truly been one of blessing and I have felt God’s presence through that choice from our 6 years of dating and beyond. And the great part is, the blessings we reap from it has continued for almost 6 years of marriage and I know they will never stop. We are in no way perfect. There were lines we crossed that we wish we could go back on and struggles we face sexually even today, but through God’s grace we have experienced abundant blessings through the good choices that we did make and redemption from the bad. God does not ask of us things in order to make life harder or not as fun, but to protect us and to bless us. We have found incredible blessings in following Him in this area of life. I wouldn’t change a thing!
For the other side of the story from someone who did not wait, I highly recommend reading THIS POST from Marriage Life Ministries. I so appreciate Alecia for being so open and for encouraging me to write on this topic myself.