The Squeezings of my Brain Grapes.
What Do You Do When The Loneliness Eats At You?

Anonymous asked you:
I’ve always believed that patience is key and God is preparing me and the man of God I should be with but what happens when patience runs out and life makes me want to give up on ever being with someone. I know people say that you should enjoy single life but what happens when the loneliness, dejection and desperation start to seep in? Thanks Jed :)

Jed Brewer replied:

Hey my friend,

Thank you for your question.  Loneliness is a terrible weight to carry around.  And I’m sorry it’s pressing down on you right now. 

For what it’s worth, it makes sense.  You feel a longing inside of you to share your life with another person, to a have a flesh-and-blood friend and companion and lover and partner, and all the pretty spiritual maxims in the world don’t make the absence of that person any easier.

Loneliness makes sense.

But, now, desperation, that’s another thing entirely.  Desperation says that this thing will probably never happen, and you’re a fool to believe otherwise.  Probably there’s nobody for you.  Probably you will live and die alone. 

This is a lie.

It’s a lie, because, if you want “somebody”, you can have that today.  Seriously.  Where you live, there are bars and clubs where people are going to find “somebody”, and they will.  They will meet, hang out, have sex, and have some form of relationship.  And you can do that, too.  Now, it isn’t a good idea – because it doesn’t work – but you can do that.

I mention this because the realization that you have a choice changes the nature of your singleness.  If you are single because no one will have you, because you don’t have any options, it’s very easy to begin to believe that you are a pathetic and pitiable creature.  And, should some schmuck come along and express an interest, it only makes sense that you would leap at that option – and cling to it – as though your life depended on it.

But, if you have the option of the cheap hook-up, and you’re choosing otherwise, then we’re looking at something else entirely.  If you can go have a mediocre, unsatisfying relationship, and you are actively choosing to wait for something better, that’s a very different position to be in than single-because-no-one-will-have-me.

First, if you’re single-by-choice, we can accept our loneliness without being afraid of it or feeling like it says something negative about us.  I think many single people feel ashamed of their loneliness, that it is in some way a sign of a deficiency on their part.  But you, brave sister, don’t need to feel that way at all.  You have a desire for a specific kind of relationship – one that has not yet come to pass.  The only right emotional response to that reality is a certain measure of loneliness.  (God himself said, “it is not good for man to be alone.”)

Second, if you’re single-by-choice, that means you’re in the driver’s seat in your life.  Which you should be.  A man or woman of God takes control of their life so that the can in turn give that control over to God.  A man or woman of God acts – they don’t react.

And, if you’re in control of your life, then you can – and should – make some active decisions that will move you in the direction of the relationship God does want for you.  Part of that means working on yourself.  Building your relationship with God.  Working on overcoming insecurities and hangups.

Part of it also means beginning to casually date members of the opposite sex so that you can begin to get a better idea of the kind of person you are ultimately looking for.  This is important.

And part of it means putting yourself where the kind of Christian man you’ll discover you want would be.  I can give you a preview of coming attractions.  You want a man who is strong, faithful, confident, kind, compassionate, and able.  Unfortunately, you are not likely to meet a man like that in most churches.

You are far more likely to meet a man like that volunteering at the jailhouse, or the AIDS hospice, or the homeless shelter.  So go to those places.  Get involved.  Volunteer.  And look around to see who else is serving with you.

You are no fool to wait for God’s best, sister.  Now, take the next step in that process, and start looking at what the steps before you are towards recognizing and meeting God’s best.

image

Hey everybody!

So, my friends over at The Good Women Project re-printed a blog post I wrote about the question, “What’s the point of waiting til marriage if you’ve already had sex?”  

If you would, take a second to stop by their site, click “like”, and leave a nice comment.  I’d really appreciate it!

Jed

goodwomenproject:

QUESTION: What is the point of waiting to have sex with my boyfriend until we get married, if I’ve already had sex before? I know it’s the right thing, but I’ve already messed things up, so does it really matter?

JED BREWER: I totally appreciate your question. And it makes sense. And I’m glad you asked.


When God says to save sex for marriage, it’s not because he has a bizarre fixation on people being virgins on their wedding night. No, he says it because sex forges an emotional bond between the two people involved.Sex forges that bond because that’s what it’s designed to do. When that bond is forged between two people who have made a commitment to be with each other, no matter what (which is what a marriage is), then everything works great. The emotional bond matches the relational bond. But when that bond is forged between two people who aren’t quite sure and they’ll see how it goes, well, people get hurt
.

How Compatible Do Me and My Boyfriend Need To Be?

hollyim asked you:
Two different people are bound to have different interests, but how much in common should I have with my boyfriend? The “easier” thing for me would be to give up and find someone more “compatible”, but I truly cherish this relationship.. Yet I have doubts because it’s way harder than I thought. I would appreciate your advice as to when to call it quits, and when to persevere. Thanks so much!

Jed Brewer replied:

Hey Holly,

This is a fantastic question.

Relationships are serious business, and it’s easy to get to a point of feeling freaked out.  You start looking for problems, and then it’s hard to know what’s real and what you’re imagining, and, before long, you just don’t know which was is up.

So, here’s what we want to do: major on the majors.  What that means is, start with the really important stuff, and go from there.

Older folks talk about the concept of “core values”.  And when they say that, they mean the things that you hold to be most important and least negotiable in your life.

For me, my core values are that God comes first, that he calls shots on what I do and where I go, and that my life is about serving him, no matter what.  In fact, when my wife and I first started dating, we sat down, and I explained, if you’re going to be with me, you need to know that God comes first, no exceptions.  That may mean ministry in the inner city; it may mean a hut in a jungle.  Either way, as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. (Joshua 24:15)  Now, my wife has the exact same core values, so, she smiled, and told me that the same thing went for me.

So, for you, I’d encourage you to take some time to think and pray about what your core values are.  What is absolutely important to you?  What is inviolate?  What are you absolutely unwilling to compromise on?  I’m betting that list would include some things related to God.  It might include some stuff related to your calling.  And, it might also include stuff related to money, or lifestyle, or location.    But you need to know what is, at the end of the day, ultimately important to you.

Then, do not, under any circumstances, compromise on those things.  Don’t get into a relationship with a person that doesn’t share those core values.  Because, if you do, one or both of you is going to wind up very, very unhappy.  This is, in fact, exactly what the Bible has in mind and is describing when it says, “Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers.”  (2 Cor 6:14)  If you take two people who don’t share core values, and ask them to share a life, that only ends in unhappiness.

But, when you find a person that shares your core values, you can begin to relax.  The major stuff is lined up.  From there, it’s about figuring out how to co-exist with another person who isn’t you.  Well, dang, sis, that’s hard for all of us!  You said in your question that you’re having doubts because the relationship is way harder than you expected.  This may not sound like good news, but I promise you, a Christian marriage is harder than you can imagine.  It requires 100% of everything you’ve got, all day, every day, 365 days a year, no exceptions.  The good news is that if you find a person who shares your core values, and both of you are giving it 100%, you will have an awesome and fulfilling marriage.

What is the point of waiting til marriage for sex if you’ve already had sex in the past?

elleinwonderland asked you:
What is the point of waiting til marriage for sex if you’ve already had sex in the past? I’m trying to do things ‘right’ in my current relationship having done a lot of things I regret in the past - but every time one of my friends asks me this question I hear this little voice in my head saying ‘yeah, that’s a good point.’ Not a voice I want to give into - but how can I explain this, both to myself and to non-Christians in a way that doesn’t look preachy? X

Jed Brewer replied:

Hey Elly,

Sis, I totally appreciate your question.  And it makes sense.  And I’m glad you asked.

When God says to save sex for marriage, it’s not because he has a bizarre fixation on people being virgins on their wedding night.  No, he says it because sex forges an emotional bond between the two people involved.  Sex forges that bond because that’s what it’s designed to do.  When that bond is forged between two people who have made a commitment to be with each other, no matter what (which is what a marriage is), then everything works great.  The emotional bond matches the relational bond.  But when that bond is forged between two people who aren’t quite sure and they’ll see how it goes, well, people get hurt.

Whenever God says, “don’t”, what he’s saying is “don’t hurt yourself.”  People can drone on about the idea of casual sex all they want, but as you and I both know, it doesn’t work.  At it’s best, casual sex is hype – the thing you keep telling yourself will be amazing, and keeps being really not that.  And at its worst, it really, really breaks our hearts.

God doesn’t want to see you get your heart broken.  That’s why.  Your heart is really important to him, and he wants you to guard it carefully (Proverbs 4:23).

And, let’s keep it real for a second: there isn’t an orgasm worthy of heartache.  And the fact that you’ve had sex in the past and got hurt doesn’t make it a good idea to do again today, any more than the fact that I’ve had one broken toe implies that I wouldn’t be bothered by a second.  Sex is not a separate category of sin where once you’ve done it, all bets are off.  I deal with drug dealers as a part of my day job, and no one is trying to tell them that since they’ve sold crack before, it doesn’t matter if they do it again.

But I’d like to add one more thing for you to look at.  And that is this: if you want a really amazing, Godly relationship, then don’t waste your time worrying about how wrong it can be and still work.  Start asking how right and good and amazing it can be.  There will come a day (when you’re married) when God will say, “It’s time for sexy time to commence and never cease.”  Between now and then, while there are some things God is saying “no” to, there’s a host of things he’s saying “yes” to – like encouraging each other, building each other up, serving Jesus together – and I’d encourage you to take a hold of those things with both hands.

xxpatchworkxx asked:

On the event of Obama’s statement about the legalization of gay marriage, I’ve been unsure of what the Christian perspective on this is? I am respectful to homosexuals and those who choose to take that path. However, I know God says what they’re doing is a sin. Should homosexuals be legally allowed to get married?

I answered:

Let’s get this out of the way: same-gender sexual intercourse is a sin (Romans 1:26-27), therefore folks who engage in it are sinners.  Now, no one can say I didn’t point that out.

Now, you know who else is a sinner? Everyone! Romans 3:23 says all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Everyone is a sinner and there are no levels of sinner. The good news is that Jesus came to love and redeem sinners; not former sinners, not reformed sinners, not sinners who only engaged in socially acceptable sins, sinners. 

And since the Church is called to love like Jesus did, guess who the church has to be accepting of? Exactly, sinners. I’m glad you are respectful of homosexuals, sadly that is way ahead of some Christians. But we are not called to be respectful of our fellow sinners, we are called to love them. 1 Corinthians 13 says “If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.” Jesus said the greatest commandment is to love God and love others.

What is at issue in President Obama’s announcement is that when Christians hear the word “marriage” they think of it in a Christian context.  The problem is that we live in a society that has all kinds of marriages.  We have Common Law marriages that are recognized legally in many states in America, and where no “vow” has ever been taken.  We have so-called “open” marriages where one or both partners are involved in extra-marital sexual activity, and both partners have signed off on it.  Further, there are many different religious marriages that are non-Christian - Sikh, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Mormon, Jewish, etc.  None of these meet the definition of a Christian marriage, but they are every bit as legally protected. Our society, as an outgrowth of our democratic underpinnings, has, for centuries, honored the desire of two consenting adults to enter into a long-term relationship and call it marriage.  There is, of course, one notable exception - the prohibition of slave marriages in the pre-Civil War South.  As a people, we do not look back kindly on this period.

Further, Christians often fail to understand that the designation of “marriage” is not a ceremonial one.  In the United States, marriage is a legal contract between two consenting adults. With it comes hospital visitation rights, legal protection of financial assets, health insurance coverage, and a host of other considerations.  It would be very difficult to argue that denying any of these rights to a committed adult couple is loving, or that denying them is in some way a defense against same-gender sexual intercourse. 

And, of course, there is the unfortunate reality that some Christians have taken a concern over the implications of gay marriage and the presence of homosexuals in society, and allowed that concern to spiral into something that is definitely *not* loving.  Verbally assaulting homosexuals - shouting that they are wicked and evil - is not loving.  Period.  (How would you like it if people castigated you every time you failed to give 10% of your income to your local church?)  And, it is nothing short of offensive to campaign that it be legal to bully LGBTQ school children.  A Savior who said he would judge the world by how they’d treated the least of these would not be pleased.

Now some might say that we have to defend the word and uphold blah blah blah. If I get married someday, the fact that other consenting adults can enter into a legal agreement will not have the slightest effect on how I love my wife. I will boil this down to the simplest terms. We are called to love, above all else. I see tolerance and equal rights as love. I see exclusion and scapegoating and using human beings for political gain as hate. As a man who believes Jesus will return to this Earth and I will stand before him and give an account (Matthew 12:36Hebrews 13:17) I am going to choose love.

-Matt from The Bridge

What Does A Godly Relationship Look Like?

rkffuddl asked you:
What does a relationship centered on God look like?

Jed Brewer replied:

Hey my friend,

That’s a great question.  And I’m really glad you asked, because the answer’s really simple, but it isn’t quite what you’d expect.

See, I think that, for a lot of us, when we hear phrases like “a relationship centered on God”, it draws to mind something super-duper spiritual, probably with a lot of words in Greek, and something that we’re pretty sure we couldn’t ever live up to.  I’ve definitely felt that way.

The good news, though, is that Godly relationships are meant for real, normal people who love Jesus.  In fact, being super-duper spiritual would probably get in the way, and you’ll understand why I say that in just a second.

A relationship centered on God is one where the two of you serve the Lord more effectively together – as a team – than you were able to separately.  That’s it.

Now, certainly, living that out involves cultivating and maintaining a close walk with the Lord for both of you individually.  It involves holding each other accountable.  And it involves encouraging each other.  But the sum total – when you put all the pieces together – is that you and beloved are better able to serve Jesus now than you were when you were single.

So how does that work out in real, actual life?  I’ll give you a few examples.

  • On Tuesdays, I lead worship for a service focused on the needs of men and women coming out of jail and drug addiction.  My wife is running the soundboard, cueing me on things I need to be aware of (like standing up straight - seriously), and debriefing with me afterwards on what parts worked well, and what parts didn’t, and why.  All of that makes me a massively better worship leader.
  • Once a month, my wife is a part of leading a worship service for ladies coming out of addiction, prostitution, and the street lifestyle.  We develop her sermon content together before hand.  Then, I haul and set up equipment while she’s greeting the folks who are showing up for the service.  And, while they’re meeting, I’m holding down security at the door.
  • A big part of my job is developing media for ministry applications.  Earlier today, I told my wife that the Lord was putting a really, really big project on my heart.  I knew it was coming from Him, but, dang, I felt like it was too big for me to pull off!  And my wife, without missing a beat, said, “You can do it.  God’s got it.  It’s no problem at all.  And we’ll do it together,” and then proceeded to grab her laptop and begin Googling the practical steps we would need to begin putting together this particular project.

See, in each of these cases, there’s a team element at work.  Sometimes that team element makes things better – as in the case of my worship leading.  Sometimes it makes it easier – as in the case of me hauling equipment.  And sometimes it makes things just plain possible – as in the case of my big huge media project.

But in every case, there’s a level of ministry going on that couldn’t exist without both of us.  And that’s what a relationship focused on God looks like.

I mentioned that being super duper spiritual might get in the way.  The reason why is that a lot of super spiritual people are too important to haul equipment, too sensitive to run a soundboard, and too heavenly-minded to use Google.  And that’s no good.

The truth is that a healthy long-term relationship – including a healthy marriage – involves a shocking amount of practical, roll-up-your-sleeves work, planning, and execution.  Serving the Lord together requires even more of that.

If you’ve got a desire to serve the Lord and keep it real in your life, you’re already pointed in the right direction to have a relationship centered on God.

Is Sex Really Spiritual?

yousoothemysoul asked you:
I have a question about sex/marriage/God. Is sex REALLY spiritual? I mean yes God created it and I’ve never been married or experienced it before but c’mon…I just don’t understand where God comes in when you’re havin’ a great time with your beloved. How the heck could it possibly be spiritual when all you are doing is thinking about your spouse? There is not way you’d have time to be thinking “wow God, this is so holy”. I just really doubt that. Is this too personal to be asked?

Jed Brewer replied:

Hey sis,

This is a great question.  And it’s a question that’s much, much bigger than sex.  I think we need to ask: what makes anything spiritual?

When the Bible talks about something being “spiritual” or “of the spirit”, it’s often in contrast to something related to our “sinful nature” or “the flesh.”  Here’s an example of that:

“The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”  (Galatians 6:8, NIV)

This verse, I think, actually gives a good hint in answering the question of “what makes something spiritual.”  And the hint is to look at who we’re trying to please.

See, because you and I exist in the context of a physical body, everything we do is physical, at least at some level.  When somebody leads worship, their muscles are working hard to keep strumming that guitar.  And that’s a physical thing.  When somebody ladles soup at the soup kitchen, again, it’s a physical action.  When somebody hugs their child, physical.  Even when you pray, the neurons in your brain are firing like all get out, which, it turns out, is a physical phenomenon.

But what makes any of those actions spiritual – in the Biblical sense – is the goal of the act.  That’s what Jesus said:

“Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them… When you give to the needy, do not announce it …to be honored by men. When you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” (Matthew 6:1-4, NIV)

This is a crazy idea!  We could do something “good” as a part of trying to hook ourselves up, and God wouldn’t like it one little bit! 

By contrast, check out this verse:

“Let a righteous man strike me—it is a kindness” (Psalm 141:5)

Here, David is saying that, if he starts to be living in a way he shouldn’t, if he starts to wander away from the Lord, he wants the Godly people he knows to kick his butt.  So, again, something that would normally be a no-no – assault is illegal most places – is absolutely Godly and spiritual if it’s at the right time and for the right reasons.

Ok, so, we could be generous for the wrong reasons, and it wouldn’t be spiritual.  And we could throw down for the right reasons, and it would.  So what does that tell us about sex?

It tells us that sex can be – and is – spiritual when it’s a part of serving the Lord with our lives.  And that’s exactly what the Bible says:

“So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering.” (Romans 12:1, MSG)

So, then: Sex as a one-night-stand because we’re feeling horny?  Not spiritual.  Sex as a part of cultivating and maintaining intimacy with your spouse and giving each other a great stress reliever while you deal with the challenges of following Jesus in the midst of tough circumstances?  Extremely spiritual.

And that leads to a bonus point.  Spiritual things – in the true sense of things that are done as an offering to God – very often do not feel spiritual at all.  Tonight, I hung out with a friend in a rough neighborhood, and, at the restaurant we were at, I was subjected to the most disgusting bathroom in the history of mankind.  Believe me, it did not feel spiritual.  But I was in that place as an offering to a God that was willing to start life-on-earth in a filthy stable.  And nothing could be more spiritual than that.

Why Is Sex Before Marriage Wrong?

Anonymous asked:
I know that I’m not supposed to have sex before marraige, but I’m not sure I really understand why. The boy I’m with is christian too, and we try and follow the bible in other ways but with sex- I’m the only one to question it and often say no. His argument is always ‘we’re going to get married anyway so it cant be a problem’. I don’t know how this stands biblically. Can you help me? Thanks Jed, love your blog

Jed Brewer replied:

Hey Anon,

Thanks for the kind words – I’m really glad you dig the blog.

Before we go any further, you deserve an apology.  See, you wouldn’t need to ask this question if people who called themselves Christians hadn’t made a total mess of marriage.  If the folks who came before you had lived up to God’s idea of marriage, you’d be able to readily see that sex in a Godly marriage is beautiful and comfortable and passionate and satisfying in ways that it cannot be outside of one.

But I know folks haven’t modeled that for you, and, so, you’re made to wonder what the point in waiting is.  And that isn’t fair to you, and, for what it’s worth, I’m sorry.

As it turns out, there’s a huge difference between sex as it is commonly practiced in our culture, and sex as God intended it.    In our culture, sex is just bodies.  It’s just two bodies coming together and doing what bodies do.  And, really, outside of the health implications, how is that different from a friend giving you a backrub?  I mean, both sex and backrubs involve your body and giving and receiving pleasure.  And, I suppose if your friend has the flu, you could get sick from the backrub, too.

But here’s what’s missing from that equation: trust, vulnerability, and intimacy.

See, in God’s idea of marriage and sexuality, sex is about far, far more than the body.  Sex is the ultimate human answer to the question, “Here I am – do you really want me?”

I bet that, when you were little, you knew somebody who had a crush on somebody else, and they wrote a note that said, “I like you. Do you like me?  Check one: [ ]yes [ ] no.”  Well, see, we, as humans, don’t ever truly grow out of that.  Romantic relationships are, at their core, the process of revealing more and more of yourself to your beloved and daring to ask, “Do you still want me?”

This process of ever-growing trust, vulnerability, acceptance, and resultant intimacy reaches its peak with sex.  You are, in a literal sense, presenting yourself naked before your spouse, and posing the question, “Here I am completely unguarded.  Will you accept me?”

Well, see, in the context of a Godly marriage, you can pose that question with complete confidence, because you know that the answer will always be, “Heck yes!”

In a Godly marriage, you know that your partner accepts you mind, body, and spirit, and has promised to do whatever is necessary so that that will always be true.  They have promised, “You can trust me, no matter what.”  And that trust gives you the freedom to be utterly vulnerable.  And when we’re vulnerable and accepted, that leads to real intimacy.  And real intimacy that leads to sex (instead of vice versa) is basically the most awesome thing ever.  It is also – I promise – the best sex you can have.

Outside of a Godly marriage – which, unfortunately includes a lot of real-life marriages – you don’t have that promise of unwavering trustworthiness.  You have how I feel about you today, and maybe how I feel about you tomorrow.  And that’s it. 

Well, see, true trust can’t exist in that context.  And without trust, we can’t have real vulnerability.  And without vulnerability, we can’t have real intimacy.  And without real intimacy, all we’ve got is bodies being bodies.

But the problem, Anon, is that, despite what our culture says, our brains can’t accept that sex is just bodies being bodies.  Our brains are convinced that sex goes with intimacy, so, when we have sex, our brains decide that there’s intimacy there, whether there really is or not.  And then things don’t work out - which no one promised they would - and we get really hurt.

So that’s why.  Sex is meant to be both the celebration and the outcome of a lifelong, committed relationship, which is what marriage is.  Sex outside of that is just a pale shadow that, health concerns aside, only sets us up to get our hearts broken.

What’s So Great About Sex, Vol. 4

What’s So Great About Sex? – Vol. 4

Quick Intro:
In this series, we’re taking a look at the way God designed sex to work within marriage, and how awesome it is.  We’re specifically looking at a book in the Bible called “Song of Solomon”, which comes right before Isaiah.  The whole book is about how great sex is within marriage.  In fact, it’s an explicit conversation between a husband and wife.  Seriously – check it out.

Today: Real Excitement!

Trying to play it cool is a torture.  Think about a highlight in your life – maybe it was making the cut for a sports team, or getting an answer right in class, or getting good feedback on a painting you did.  Some part of you, in that moment, is sure that you need to play it cool.  Don’t get too excited.  Just shrug your shoulders and mumble the words, “Whatever”, and that way people will think you’re cool.  We’ve all done that.

Well, see, that’s the way most people approach dating relationships, and especially in regards to sexuality.  You’re supposed to be cool, and play it cool, and not get too excited, and, sure, hey, you know, sex is cool, whatever, if you’re into that.

The problem here is that this playing-it-cool approach takes all of the fun away.  When something awesome happens, allowing yourself to be excited and blown away and overwhelmed is a big part of the experience.  And it’s one God wants for you.  Here’s our passage:

“[The Wife says]

My lover is already on his way to his garden,
   to browse among the flowers, touching the colors and forms.

[The Husband says]

Your beauty is too much for me—I’m in over my head.
   I’m not used to this! I can’t take it in.” (Song of Solomon 6:2-5, various, MSG)

OK, so, when the wife is talking about “his garden”, she’s referring to her body.  So, she’s saying that her husband is coming to, well, explore her body.  Now, note the husband’s response.  He doesn’t say, “Yeah, you know, that’s cool.  Whatever.”  And he doesn’t put on the false bravado of, “Hey, let me show you my moves!”

No, instead, he says, “This is too much.  I’m in over my head.  I can’t even take it all in.”  He’s blown away.

Dude, how awesome, and real, and sweet, and authentic is that?  He’s there with his wife, who is sans clothing, and he’s a kid-in-a-candy-store.  And that’s just right.  He doesn’t need to be smooth.  He doesn’t need to be fashionably disinterested.  He can be honest about the fact that his wife is so beautiful, and alluring, that she reduces him to a simple expression of, “Whoa.  Just…whoa.”

Sex is a beautiful and mysterious thing.  In truth, it should reduce all of us to, “Whoa.”  It is physical, and emotional, and spiritual, all at once.  It is this miraculous moment where love brings two people into a total union and (can) create a wholly new, unique life as the outcome.  To that, I say,  “Whoa.”  And so should you.

But, on a more basic level, when a total hottie (which is how you will see your spouse) stands before you, naked, and says, “I’m all yours; have fun,” the only right response is “Whoa.”  The only fun response is, “Whoa.”  The only Godly response is, “Whoa.”  And anything less is, in fact, an insult to your beloved, as though you’re jaded because everywhere you go, people disrobe and offer themselves to you.  (Hint: they don’t.)

No, that’s no good.  Excitement suits you.

This is what God wants for you.  A sex life that reduces you to “whoa.”  Beauty and seduction and allure that reduces you to “whoa.”  Authenticity where your spouse receives your speechlessness as the highest of praise.  This is what awaits you, and it’s worth waiting for.

Your Future Is So Very, Very Bright

As I look through my dashboard here on Tumblr, I see so many of my friends feeling discouraged and beaten down.  Some of them are hating on themselves for the ways their body looks.  Some are tearing themselves apart because they aren’t in a romantic relationship.  And some are feeling wrecked because they are, and it isn’t working.

Particularly when you’re in your teens and early twenties, there are so many difficult things going on around you, and you don’t have a lot of control over many of them, and you can start to wonder, “Will things ever really be good for me?”

As your big brother, let me answer that: yes.

You - yes, you - have gifts, talents, and abilities the world needs.  There is a destiny for your life.  You may not see it yet, but it’s real.  I promise.  God has set the ball on the tee so that you could come into this world and change it.  If you’ll follow the Lord (and I know you will) this world will never be the same because you were in it.  (Ephesians 2:10)

You - yes, you - have a heart and body both that will be incredibly attractive to the right person at the right time.  Actually, let me rephrase that: In God’s time, in God’s way, there’s a person that will behold you - mind, body, and spirit - and think you hang the moon.  They will be blown away by you, entranced, madly in love, and absolutely determined to have you.  And you will get married.  And you will have sex.  And God won’t want you to stop making sweet love to each other as long as you live.  (1 Corinthians 7:5)

You - again, I’m talking about you here - will have a community of people that love you, believe in you, see what you bring to the table, and value you.  You will belong.  Follow the Lord, and he will take you to that place.  You will have fellowship.  You will have real family.  And you will have a closeness that can’t be found any other way.  (Matthew 12:50)

So don’t give up.  I know you’re going through hard stuff today.  Don’t give up.  Keep taking your struggles to God.  Keep getting strength from Him to face them head-on.  And don’t give up.

Your future is so very, very bright.