Drink Your Fill

Posted on March 21, 2013

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Sometimes we act like we were the ones that discovered it [sex] was fun, like maybe God was in heaven and was surprised to see how enjoyable we could make it.  “Whoa, I created that for procreation purposes; I had no idea it would be so awesome.”  And so we give the world credit for sex and think that God is only down with the functional version, but the fun version, the wild version, that’s probably something Marvin Gaye came up with.  Jonathan Acuff

The working title for this post had been “Hot Christian Sex,” but I was concerned about what kind of spam might come my way after putting out a post with that title.  Most of my clients are fellow Christians, and some couples wrestle with the question of what is appropriate sexual expression within a Christian marriage.  Growing up, we get so many messages about what we are not supposed to do sexually and comparatively few about healthy sexuality.  I remember a boys’ small group meeting from the church high school ministry in which the subject of keeping appropriate sexual boundaries was discussed.  During the discussion, one boy said, “I know it is okay when you are married.”  I corrected, “No, it is wonderful when you are married.”  Some couples seem to carry into marriage this idea that sex is allowed in marriage, but it must be wrong (i.e. sinful) if you are enjoying it too much.  Even my latest posts on the dangers of pornography (which are manifold) focused more on avoiding the unhealthy rather than embracing healthy sexuality.

There is an old anecdote about a youth group Bible study coming to the Song of Songs, and one girl remarking, “If my mother knew that was in there, she wouldn’t let me read it.”  There is an entire book in the Bible dedicated to romantic, sexual love.  The title of the book, Song of Songs, suggests that this is the greatest song (similar to how Jesus is the King of kings and Lord of lords).  So what is the appropriate amount of sex between the young couple as suggested by scripture?  “Drink your fill, O lovers (Song of Songs 5:1).”  Scripture suggests that the couple should be enjoying their sexual relationship as much as they want.  Proverbs 5: 18-19 instructs “May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth.  A loving doe, a graceful deer—may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be intoxicated with her love.”  In some versions, the work that is translated “intoxicated” is translated as “captivated” or “exhilarated.”  Marital sex is supposed to be awesome.  God’s word says so.

“Awesome sex” is not about performance, but about intimacy.  It is about mutual pleasure and connection.  It is about knowing and being fully known.  Healthy Sex (2013) offered the CERTS model for healthy sex.  According to this model, healthy sexuality requires that five conditions be met: Consent, Equality, Respect, Trust, and Safety.  Consent means that both partners are willing participants, freely and comfortably choosing to engage in sexual activity.  Equality indicates that neither partner dominates or intimidates the other.  The sense of personal power between the partners is on an equal level.  Respect requires that you have a positive regard for yourself and your partner, and feel respected by your partner.  Trust involves trust on both a physical and emotional level.  Safety means you feel safe and secure with the setting and are comfortable with where, when, and how sexual activity happens.

Speaking of safety, Valenti-Anderson (n.d.) offered this definition of S.A.F.E Sex.  First, it is not Secretive.  This does not mean that it is not private, but that there is not a part of your sex life that is secret from your partner.  Second, it is not Abusive (i.e. not demeaning).  Third, it is not used as an escape from Feelings.  Sex should be about connection not to numb out from painful emotions.  Fourth, it is not Empty of relationship.

There you have it.  Like the word says, “Drink your fill, O lovers.”

Reference

Acuff, J. (2010). Stuff Christians like.  Zondervan: Grand Rapids.

Healthy Sex.com (2013).  “The CERTS Model for Healthy Sex.”  Retrieved 21 March 2013 at http://www.healthysex.com/page/certs-model.

Valenti-Anderson, A. (n.d.).  “Sane resources to help you heal.”  Unpublished document.  Phoenix, AZ.

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