Purity is way more than abstinence.

Hey friends!

Today I’m going to be tackling the topic of purity. It’s a topic that holds a lot of meaning to me, and it’s been on my mind for awhile. Hang tight with me as I dive in and tackle this topic.

Purity-Rings

 

The Christian church today has capitalized off of this whole idea that purity has to do with abstinence. You must buy this book, buy this purity ring, attend this conference, etc. I can’t tell you the amount of friends that I’ve had that have bought the purity rings, and devotional books dedicated to the topic of abstinence. For years even I thought that in order for me to be sexually pure, or abstain from sex until marriage that it was “required” that I wear one of these. “If I don’t wear a purity ring, how will people know I’m striving to live a life devoted to purity?” I would often think to myself……

We’ve turned purity into a checklist that we need to follow.

We’ve gone and told young girls and boys that in order to stay “pure” they must abstain from sex. We’ve gone and told them that their “reward” for being “sexually clean” is to find that perfect spouse that God has planned out for them. Because of this way of thinking, we have men and women out there who remain sexually pure because they think that in doing so they are going to be rewarded one day with a spouse.

I’ve sat with many women who through tears and sobbing have asked me, “What am I doing wrong? Why am I not married yet?”. And honestly, at some point or another I’ve been one of those women who have cried and sobbed my heart out on some other persons shoulder, asking the same old question. “I’m waiting, I’m trying to do everything right. How come nothing’s going right? Where’s my reward?”.

What are we supposed to say to these people who have been sexually pure for their whole lives and watched friends and family who have only been pure for a few days, weeks, months or years and are already getting married?

………hold on here for a second………

I think we may be missing something…
What about Jesus Christ?

I can be as “sexually pure” as I want, and practice abstinence until marriage and buy the purity ring and follow all the correct steps, but at the same time, I can be so dirt stained from my sin unless I have put my faith in Jesus Christ and been transformed and renewed by the gospel. 

All abstinence is is a habit that we have simply attached to mean purity.
Purity is a lifestyle.
It is living our lives in such a way that God originally had planned out for us.

Don’t get me wrong guys……
We are absolutely called to sexual abstinence, but that’s not what defines our purity.

When we put our faith in Jesus Christ and allow the gospel to transform and renew us, we allow God to create in us a pure heart and cleanse us.

Let’s stop telling people that purity is the key to marriage and start telling them that it’s a lifestyle.
Let’s stop telling people that being, “sexually clean” is the answer to purity and let’s start pointing people to Jesus as an example of what purity looks like.

 

 

 

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Build a longer table, not a taller wall.

hey fam! <3

I’m sure if you have a Facebook, or Twitter you have heard people share something to the effect of, “If you have a great fortune, build a longer table, not a taller wall”.

buildalongertable

 

i know how hard it can be to be so afraid that you just want to put up barriers and protect yourself. even if that means building an unrealistic wall on the border…. i get it. you want to make your future known, you want to know that your family and you will be safe from terrorist attacks. you want to know who is coming into this country. you don’t want to pay high taxes. i get it. really. i do.

 

but when we allow fear to take hold of us, we allow it to dictate our thoughts, actions and beliefs. we give fear power to come into our lives like an oppressive dictator kicking down doors.

when we make way to fear, we stop being inviting. we stop loving. we stop being real.

i don’t claim to know everything, because i don’t. but what i do know is that no matter how hard we try, we can never prevent attacks of violence. violence comes from fear which then turns into anger which then turns to hate when then turns to violence. no matter how hard we try, there will always be something we need to protect ourselves from.

honestly……..we might be better living in a bubble! am i, right?
that’s a unrealistic reality though…….living in a bubble or hiding ourselves away from humanity.

What if we became more inviting? What if we made our table longer?
That refugee family that just moved in down the street? What if we invite them over for Easter, or Fourth of July, or Christmas?
That mailman/mail lady who just lost his/her spouse, what if we talk to them or make them a batch of cookies?
That friend or relative that you don’t agree with politically, what if we stopped arguing with them, and started listening?
That relative or friend who just came out as gay, bi, queer, or transgender? How about we be loving and supportive? How about we invite them over and hang out with them?
That African-American friend of ours who says, “Black Lives Matters” and talk about how they feel oppressed? Let’s not disregard their hurt, or their feelings.

Let’s listen. friends, let’s not allow our fears or disagreements keep us from extending our tables.
longer tables, not taller walls.