I'll be honest, there's a small part of me that doesn't want to write what I'm about to write. One, because it is deeply personal and two, because I don't want my intentions misunderstood. It is only because I have this inherent need to write out my feelings that I have decided to bare my heart and soul.
You may remember a couple months ago I wrote a post about how I had waited to find my husband, but did not wait until our wedding night to...ahem...consummate our relationship (see here). You may also recall that a little over a week ago, Chuck and I met with our Pastor who is solemnizing our vows for some pre-marital counsel. He was aware of our current living situation and was frank with us about his feelings as a Pastor about it. His words were kind and loving, but honest and sincere. (Just another reason why we have so much respect for him).
After Reverend Noah left, and Chuck and I remained to ponder what had been discussed, I asked him about whether he would entertain the idea of abstaining for the remaining four months until our wedding day. To my surprise, he was 100% supportive of the idea.
I had a vague notion of why it was important to me, and to us, that we abstain for the next few months. It did not stem from any feelings of guilt for "jumping the gun" nor were we trying to impress anyone or prove anything. Our pact was simply about us and about God. Not having grown up in the Church, it would be an understatement to say I lack spiritual discipline. I haven't picked up my Bible in months, if not years and my prayers are sporadic, inconsistent and mostly self-centered. I've been craving a closer, more devoted relationship with my Holy Father and in light of the spiritual union and commitment Chuck and I are about to make, this seemed the perfect practice to honor God and the gifts of love, marriage and sex that He's bestowed upon us.
However, it wasn't until yesterday while reading A Walk Across the Sun, the story of two young girls who are orphaned by a tsunami and soon after abducted into the world of sex trafficking, that it occurred to me why our abstention is so significant. I am pretty familiar with the gruesome and sickening realities of global sex trafficking and modern-day slavery having worked with IJM in college. But it was not until I was immersed in the story of young girls whose innocence was brutally stripped away from them, that it began to dawn on me just how blessed I am to be given the gift of sex in my relationship.
When Chuck and I first...ahem...consummated our relationship, it was rooted in love and trust. We had found each other and were ready to demonstrate our commitment to one another through this beautiful act of intimacy. I distinctly remember Chuck asking me the next day my feelings about the events that transpired because we had a mutual understanding of just how significant this step in our relationship was. For millions of girls, they will never know that feeling of affection and trust. They will not bask in the warm embrace of the man they love. Rather, they will be hurt. They will come to associate a beautiful gift from God as ugly, painful and cruel. They will begin to view sex not as the physical representation of love in their lives, but as a commodity.
It is because of those girls that Chuck and I are abstaining from sex until we are legally wed. It is because of those girls that we have come to understand what a gift sex is and we intend to treat it as such.
It is because of those girls that we will thank God for sex.