I’m having a hard time with this post. I’ve started it several times. I’ve left it for days and I’m still not sure where to start or where to end. Originally it was going to be a list of things to change or do better but it rapidly became something else. So, I’m going to attempt to publish it in whatever current state it is in and then you can be the judge as to whether I succeeded in making a point or not!
Whether you care about making resolutions or not, it’s kind of hard to not get thinking about making changes at this time of year. You throw out the new calendar and replace it with a crisp new one, no markings and no cluttered notes. You decide that the Christmas ornaments have to go, you purge your stash of unused and unwanted decorations and anticipate the next season with a simpler, more minimalist goal in mind. We all do it.
And so, with our lives, our social connections, our families and our bad habits we should also be looking to change what we’ve come to know as “Normal”. There’s a quote by Barbara Johnson(Christian humourist and author) that says “normal is just a setting on your dryer”. And isn’t that the truth!! Then why, oh why, do we try to justify our actions and attitudes and deem them as “normal”? I look around and see what others call normal and cringe. I really do. And it becomes more evident if you’re on Facebook or another site like that where you see the comments and “LOLing” that goes along with people’s posts about their lifestyles and antics. It’s disturbing and it’s time to change. And yes, this is one of those times when I am pointing the finger at you….and you…and you. You know who you are and as you read through this I’m hoping that you feel convicted enough to change what your NORM is and swap it for something new, and fresh and a whole lot more God-pleasing and moral than what you’re currently doing.
I’m talking about Fornication and Adultery~ wooooo….I can hear the whispers now.
And the first question is likely, “What in the world is fornication?” Here is the dictionary definition: “voluntary sexual intercourse between two unmarried persons or two persons not married to each other.”
Adultery , of course, is when a person engages in sex with someone other than their spouse. I guess, technically, adultery only applies if you are married or if the person you’re hooking up with is married. But both words pertain to sex outside of marriage.
The fact is that we live in a culture where it is acceptable and NORMAL to sleep with someone you are not married to.
I am disturbed, frustrated and truly concerned for my family, my friends and my children who are influenced by this culture of apathy towards marriage. Movies and television have romanticized the casual hook-up so much that it is now expected and acceptable to “test the waters” of your sexuality early on in any relationship. It is a scary thought but it is reality that 11, 12 and 13 year olds are engaging in these sorts of mature situations with absolutely no care or concern for the possible outcomes, side-effects and emotional turmoil that they can and will cause.
Maybe you think it’s old fashioned to wait until marriage but there are good reasons for waiting. Every time you sleep with someone you are not married to you are giving that person consent to do the same!
“WHAT?” you ask! Yes, you cannot expect to have sex with someone that you are not committed to and turn around and be upset if they sleep with anyone that they are not married to. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve “been” with someone, it doesn’t matter how committed you think you are or what your intentions are. This is one of the facts that never ceases to amaze and confound me! I have seen time and time again the crying and screaming , the blaming and torment that a couple goes through when one or both cheat on the other. Relationships were never intended to be this way. Especially for women, a lot of emotion is invested into any relationship. It is hard for me, as a woman, to conceive of not being completely and utterly caught up emotionally with a man that I am giving my whole self too. So, it stands to reason that if I or he should decide to end the relationship or take up with someone else someone will be hurt and hurt badly.
Unfortunately, the cycle does not end there~ it continues and often spirals out of control. Young girls who give themselves over physically to a man(or a boy) will find that they lose a part of themselves. This is really important to understand. Physical intimacy between a man and a woman is a mystery. The Bible says it and I’ve lived it. God says that “the two shall become one flesh”. It is hard to describe but it is a holy union for a man and woman to be joined and a supernatural occurrence takes place. Therefore, separating from that union is going to be painful not only physically and emotionally but spiritually as well. We don’t understand all of the inner-workings of our souls but God does and that is why he has given us guidelines and protections for how to keep it safe and secure. Joining ourselves to one person forever and ever , amen is the way He has designed us to live. Trust me, it will bring you to a place of peace and joy and commitment like you have never known or would have ever dreamed possible if you follow this path.
However, girls(and guys) who live their teenage years bouncing from one boyfriend to the next find that it is hard to escape this pattern. Because of this emotional, physical and spiritual connection they feel lost and lonely if they are not “with” someone. It is common nowadays to see girls break up with one guy on Monday and be “dating” and likely sleeping with a new guy by Friday. A relationship like this may last 2 or 3 months if they’re lucky but after the lust and feverish passion have worn off they’re dumping each other and searching for the next willing partner. How I wish I could take a hold of their young faces and shake them into reality! The pain will never end, the desire of the flesh will only get harder and harder to resist and the cycle will continue. These are not people that we want being parents~ but they will be. These are the parents of aborted babies, FAS babies, shaken baby syndrome kids and kids in the foster care systems. These are kids who are faced with grown up choices, grown up situations and grown up messes.
The grown ups aren’t much better. There are 20-something year olds having babies with men they’re not married to who aren’t ready to settle down and be dads and support a family. There are 30-something year olds forgetting their marriage vows and suddenly finding themselves acting like teenagers again. They’re losing their homes, their jobs, their families and their lives because the world has told them they can have it all and “get a little on the side”. It’s not a pretty picture. We need to wake up and take a look around us.
Who are your friends? Are they married? Divorced? Dating? Living together? What is happening on your street, in your family, in your home or your church? Are you accountable to anyone or is anyone accountable to you? Isn’t being part of a family holding each other up but also holding each other accountable for our actions? Why are we born into families if we aren’t willing to be taught, mentored and given some tough love once in a while?
You know, none of us are perfect. It is hard for me to control myself at times(and this may be one of them). I say things and I’ve hurt people. I know that. And I’m working on it. I also know that life is tough and it’s only going to get tougher. It’s a scary world. But if we rely on our feelings in the moment to dictate what we do and how we do it, we will soon find ourselves to be at the edge of a cliff. You can jump off and be free for a while….but soon you will hit rock bottom and it will devastate your life. It will kill you~ literally. You may not want to hear this, but there is a judgement day coming and you better be prepared to face your Maker. He will judge and His judgement may not look anything like the way you or I think it will be.
2 Timothy 3:1 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4 treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.
1 Corinthians 6:9 Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men10 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
Adultery is simple~ sleeping with someone you’re not married to. God does not bless adulterers and the Bible even goes further to say that adulterers WILL NOT inherit the kingdom of Heaven. (ouch~ that hurts).