My bachelorette party was a huge celebration. No, not the way the world celebrates. Most bachelorette parties are about getting one last wild night out before being “tied down” to your spouse.
My bachelorette party was a celebration of my upcoming wedding night, filled with intentional advice, prayer, and lots of lingerie (I was not going to be wearing any frumpy nightgowns on my honeymoon)! I proudly opened my lace negligee and giggled with my girlfriends about what my honeymoon would be like…. sacred and sexy.
Sex is not bad
The Purity Movement of the 1990s and early 2000s encouraged women, like myself, to save sex for marriage. Unfortunately, sometimes the message sounded more like this:it’s wrong to be sexual.
Rather than looking forward to their honeymoons, women felt like their sexuality was a bad thing, and these same women reportedly had trouble “flipping the switch” to enjoy sex in marriage. It’s no wonder! They perceived sex as bad for so long that they continued to do so, even after they tied the knot.
Let me do you a favor and clear that up right now. Sex is NOT bad. It is good… in the right context.
God created us with sexual attraction, and that, in and of itself, isn’t wrong. In fact, it’s glorious because it reveals something about God to us. Sex is designed to be an exclusive, intimate experience aimed at fully knowing your spouse. When we love someone exclusively in a committed marriage relationship, it’s the kind of exclusive, eternal love Christ has for the church. Notice I used the word “exclusive” a lot because God does not like to share our love (Exodus 20:3). And we are not to share sex with anyone other than our spouse.
Ephesians 5:31-32, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church.”
When we celebrate sexuality as a good thing to protect, not an evil to avoid, we encourage women to actually look forward to their wedding night, not subconsciously feel guilty. Satan has cleverly twisted the purity message into making women feel so icky about sex that they miss out on this beautiful mystery of love in the very place God designed it to be experienced – marriage.
Sex is powerful
If Hollywood does one thing right, it’s portraying the power of sex. The women on the silver screen always seem so empowered, wearing whatever they want and wielding their feminine sex appeal like a weapon.
But the power they portray is yet another twisted picture of God’s truth. Sex has the power to create human lives and physically destroy others with disease, break hearts or bind them together in unison. The women who exploit this power are no more in control of sex than the woman who are ashamed of it.
The legalistic woman stifles her sexuality. The loose woman flaunts it. One lives under the condemnation of shame and the other lives with the regret of her mistakes. Sex controls both of them on opposite ends of the spectrum.
When abused, sex always controls us. But God’s design offers us another option, putting sex in proper perspective.
Sex is not to be feared but revered
I did not suppress my sexuality because I feared it, I protected my sexuality because I revered it. I knew that I was a beautiful, powerful woman who had the potential to do lovely things but also a broken, sinful woman with the inclination to destroy myself.
If I misused my sexuality in manipulative ways, I knew I could hurt myself and others, mess with people’s hearts, damage them spiritually, yes, even “be a stumbling block”. Sexuality is a powerful force, but I wasn’t afraid of it. When put in proper perspective, I realized that harnessing the power of my sexuality created exciting anticipation, an intimate experience on my wedding night, and a lifelong journey of love.
Sex is purposeful
Okay, rewind to my bachelorette party. My bridesmaids made me wear a shirt that said “I am saving myself for awkward honeymoon sex” just to keep me level headed. It was a funny reminder that life isn’t a Hollywood romance. Sex can be awkward. And it takes work. It is a purposeful act of binding two lives together.
Learning how your bodies work together is part of the joy of being newly weds. It’s a God-glorifying experience of hours spent between the sheets on your honeymoon, exploring each other’s bodies to discover what feels good in a pure, holy expression of your sexuality.
There is no shame in that.
Our capacity to love intimately, to know deeply, and to feel another heartbeat against ours is a human experience designed by God. We are created as sexual beings. Sensuality is something we experience through our five senses… taste, smell, sight, sound, and touch.
And it’s powerful.
This incredibly intimate experience allows us to know another inside and out. It bonds us emotionally, physically, mentally, relationally, and even spiritually.
And it’s purposeful.
Ultimately, marriage tells the story of Jesus, the Groom, sacrificing himself for His bride, the church. Married sex gives us a picture of the committed, unifying, exclusive love that God has for us – not to be exploited or feared but to be protected and revered. Now, that’s something worth celebrating!!