I have had this thought, really a question, for some time now.
If God created sex to be holy, good, and an act of a covenant relationship which He’s all about, then why does it feel sinful?
I know many God-honoring people who did everything biblically correct. And many Christian marriages that honestly did nothing right. I’m finding a lot of them have shared one common theme in their sex lives.
Satan loves to awaken sex before it's time and puts it to bed after marriage, when the time has arrived.
As much as I hate that phrase, it has rung true - not just for me.
My husband and I are going on 17 years married. We had a lot of locust-eating years, if you know what I mean.
After a decade of struggle, we finally had significant breakthrough around intimacy.
Most of us have seen how easily the enemy distorts sex. I can go into all the ways he has done so in my own life but I think it’s time to focus more on what sex is supposed to be, rather than what it’s not.
In the middle of my confusion and disappointment, my big question to the Lord has been this:
I know it’s not supposed to be like this, but how did You create it to be? What was Your original design and intention? What is Holy sex supposed to be like?
I would hear church ladies say things like, “Please your man so he doesn’t look at porn.”
That didn’t sit well with me.
The notion that my job is to gratify his flesh so he doesn’t sin doesn’t line up with all the scripture I’ve read, telling us to put to death our flesh. 1 Corinthians 9:27, Galatians 5:24, Romans 8:13 to list only a few.
Or I would hear this one, “Have your makeup done for him when he comes home.”
While I know that there is a place to honor your man and it’s fun to get dolled up, this also felt contrived to me.
What is my role here? Am I a play thing to keep him happy. Is his satisfaction dependable upon my eagerness to supply a demand? Is my marital value in my sex appeal?
This felt wrong to me too.
To give some background, I was objectified my entire life. I can give stories of things men have spoken to me because of their view of a beautiful girl being “used” for only one thing.
But I digress. This is about what it’s MEANT to be, not what it’s been perverted to be.
About a decade into our marriage I had an encounter with God that changed my life and my perspective of not only myself, but of Jesus.
Jesus is everything they say He is. He is good, holy, loving and kind. Mainly, what God communicated to me was that He is safe. He is love. Like, actually, there is no love without Jesus. As in, it doesn’t exist.
Isn’t that truly what we are all searching for in the deepest part of our being? Love.
After my encounter with His personal love for me, I started asking Him the question.
God you created intimacy, so what is true intimacy?
He started showing me that intimacy with Him was not unlike intimacy in marriage. Rather, His design, done Holy and honoring to Him, is a taste of Heaven with Him.
That might sound really bizarre to some of you. But stay with me here...it only seems weird and gross because our view of sex has been so tainted.
The Bible tells us that Jesus is the bridegroom, and that we the Church, are the bride. That when He comes back to get us, it’s our marriage ceremony.
God wants to communicate something we are missing about His beautiful and intricate design of us. It’s about connection. It’s about love.
“To love is to be vulnerable.” - C.S. Lewis
It’s not about gratification. It’s about vulnerable connection. The deepest connection you can possibly have.
We are knit in our mother’s womb and that is a deep connection. But this, this is a choice like none other.
True intimacy is a choice to lay it all down and lay it all out, completely raw and exposed. Not only physically as in the act of sex, but emotionally and spiritually. To connect with your spouse in the deepest way possible. With every part of your being.
This is why there are such strict parameters for sex in the Bible. When we have sex flippantly we are making soul connections with people who perhaps are not safe, don’t love us, mistreat us and may even abuse us.
God created Adam and Eve for connection with Him and each other. From Adam's rib, Eve was made to complete the circle of oneness in the most intimate and connected way. In a covenant marriage, God led them. He was deeply connected to them. In this place with Him, they are safe. They are protected. They are cherished and loved.
When a husband and a wife come together the way God orchestrated, it ends up being the most beautiful symphony ever heard.
It’s an example of Jesus’ love for us, the church. Sex outside of marriage is lacking. The enemy knows it. But we don’t. We believe his lies that we need to “test drive the car before we buy it” because we have bought into the perversion of sex being about flesh gratification, when it was never about that. It’s actually Holy and worshipful.
The Church (Jesus’ bride) asleep, has missed what sex is meant to be. We know the secular world has missed it, undoubtedly. We have also. Partly because we are afraid to talk about it.
When has fear ever been from the Lord? I’m pretty sure there’s a few scriptures that tell us not to be fearful. For those of you thinking, “What about the Fear of the Lord, Amanda?” The Fear of the Lord is a Holy reverence of Him and that’s completely different than scared, anxiety fear. Scripture tells us, there’s no fear in love but perfect love casts out fear and remember Jesus IS love. So when we are intimate with Him, truly abiding in Him, there is no fear.
(John 15:4, 1 John 4:18)
Because of what Jesus did on the cross to restore connection with us to the Father, we become ONE with Him.
“But the one who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit with Him.” 1 Corinthians 6:17
Read this whole chapter! So good. Read 1 John 4 also because you’ll get a profound lesson on love.
What I want to leave you with is wonder. Awe and wonder.
God, like an anticipating parent on Christmas morning, wants us to unwrap this gift. He wants us to shake it, explore and take guesses on what it could be. As we ask questions, He proceeds to tell us to unwrap this gift.
Everything we are looking for is in His word, the Bible. It’s living and breathing.
Jesus give us fresh perspective. Let us discard what religion has taught us and fully seek You in the secret place to discover the mystery of intimacy. (Matthew 13:11 psalm 27, psalm 91)
~ Amanda Santistevan