It’s Still Dangerous in the Bedroom (I Talk About Sex)

***DISCLAIMER: Before I begin, I want to point out that I am not in anyway an authority on this subject. I am not married and will more than likely not be for a while. But these have been my thoughts in recent days.***

I’m sure if you’ve been raised in a church setting of some kind you’ve heard a phrase referring to saving sex until marriage and then going crazy in the bedroom once you are married. 

I tend to disagree with that idea.

Here’s why:

As Christians we are against lust. We see porn as a problem and premarital sex is a firm no, and don’t even think about mentioning homosexuality. But for some reason the message is sent that once you are married lust isn’t a struggle anymore. You will have a sexual partner so there will be no need for other sexual stimulation. Right? I have been told that is not so. 

The danger then, in having an “anything goes” mentality is that lust can still rule the marital sex scene.  You get married and suddenly sex is available. Marital sex is a pure, God-given pleasure, but I believe it is dangerous to remark about how anything can go because you can easily fall into the pattern that ends up with your spouse being treated as a sex toy, delivering you your pleasure at anytime with no boundaries. This scares me.  This is no longer a pure act, but has now become a sin-infested sex romp.

These are my thoughts. I would love to hear your thoughts on the topic I have discussed. This is only a concept I have been thinking about for a day or two so it is obviously not polished. 

The Only

If you have talked to me at all within the last year or so, it was probably pretty evident that I am very outspoken about dating and priorities. God was gracious enough to let me know that He was not my number one priority and therefore I was not ready for a dating relationship. The last few months have been that constant conversation and whenever someone talks about love, I like to make sure that they know that God should be the only being that we seek satisfaction from and that He should be our only priority. 

I’m 98% sure that I was 99% annoying. 

And I really do believe God should be our only priority and the only being that satisfies us, but the problem was I wasn’t exactly living like it through ALL the little compartments in my life. Sure, I was working on Him being the only real priority in dating relationships (which haven’t really existed) but the other parts of my life He seemed to slip down beyond the top.

God shouldn’t just be my number one priority, He really should be my only priority. I wasn’t seeking Him out like I should. I would be working on making Him priority number one in one part of my life, but neglect the other areas. It seemed that every time I got a grasp on one part, I would need to begin working on another. It is still that way.

But I’m working on it, because God is incredibly patient and gracious. 

God doesn’t want to be the first priority in my relationship with the female gender, but my only priority throughout my whole life.

It’s a constant fight and journey, but God is gracious and loving, even in my mistakes.

It’s Okay To Be Single On Valentine’s Day

You can either love it or you hate it, but Valentine’s Day is coming in just a few days. Because this holiday can hold either romance or bruises, I wanted to write a little something of encouragement for those without a date this February 14th.  

It’s okay to be single on Valentine’s Day. In fact, it’s okay to be single. Period. The pressure to have a date on this particular day can be overwhelming. There can be a lot of doubt, loss of confidence, and just plain depression on the day that celebrates love and relationships. 

But take it from me: You will survive. 

Don’t give up. As much fun as relationships may be, don’t let one day get you down. 

You are loved more than you can even imagine.

Just because you don’t have a date doesn’t even come close to meaning you are worthless.

You are worth more than you can imagine. 

Sure, it may be a hard day and you may constantly be reminded that you are single, but that is okay. Your value comes from far more than a boyfriend/girlfriend. It’s so easy to get caught up in the importance society puts on romantic relationships, but please don’t let that keep you down. 

You probably desire someone that you can pour love on and that will treat you right and will be cute with you. You may just want/need love. You may want someone to be important to you and treat you like you are important. And you may not have that someone. But the great news is this:

Your value comes from the most important being in the Universe.

Your beauty comes from the most important being in the Universe.

Your love comes from the most important being in the Universe.

You come from the most important being in the Universe.

God loves you. He values you. He sees you as beautiful. You are worth a lot for Him. 

The worth He sees in you, the beautiful masterpiece He made you, and the love He has for you is WAY more than any guy or girl could ever show you. He delights in you. You are His treasure. Find hope in His love for you.

Plus, He will never stop loving you.

So push through the romance infused day, keep your head up, and dance in the love God has for you, whether you have a boyfriend/girlfriend or not.

We Could Lose It All, But At Least We Get It All

This semester, I am assigned to read “Radical” by David Platt for my Christian Missions class. I’m pretty excited about it. In fact, it’s already making me think, which in turn, usually gets me to write/tweet. 

He starts off the book with talking about how Jesus pretty much tells those who want to follow Him that their lives are about to get really hard. They have to leave their comfortable lives and join Him as a homeless man. They are not guaranteed much except that it won’t be easy. 

As followers of Christ, we are called to literally pick up an instrument of torture and follow Him. He asks us to give up our desires and the things we love to follow Him. However, in doing that, we get everything out of losing it all. 

Jesus is all we need. 

When we give up what we desire and let Him take over, we’re getting the only thing worth living for. Jesus. We’re getting a life that may be uncomfortable and painful, but we’re also getting the God who is in control of it all. We’re getting the hope of mankind. 

So while life gets hard, we get Jesus. 

A radical life of following Jesus to wherever He takes us will take us to places we could never imagine. It also takes us to Jesus.

And that’s all that really matters. Jesus.

When Everything Seems To Be Going Wrong…

This past Wednesday I began my journey back to Spokane, WA where I am studying biblical exposition (fancy words for preaching). I had taken the fall semester off and was ready to be back and get back into the swing of things.

Tuesday night wrapped up nicely, but it wrapped up late. Around 3:30 on Wednesday morning I went to sleep, only to wake up at 6:00. I finished packing, got ready for the day, and left with my parents for the Traverse City airport.

When we got there, I said my goodbyes and went through security. While waiting to get through, I prayed to God that I would see His sovereignty through it all, no matter what happened. I don’t know why I specifically prayed that, but that is exactly what happened.

I got on the plane in Traverse City and patiently waited to begin the first leg of the journey. As we flew, I met a nice Christian woman who I talked to for a good portion of the trip to Chicago’s O’Hare airport. We landed in Chicago on time and while we were waiting to get off the plane, Tracy, the lady next to me, asked me if I had a good amount of time before my next flight left. I told her I did, but, unfortunately, I was wrong. I apparently only had about twenty minutes until my flight to Denver left and had to walk all the way through O’Hare to get to the gate. As I was hurrying my way through the giant airport, I knew my hope to catch the flight was lost, but I got to the gate nevertheless. At the gate, I was told to walk over to the customer service desk and get a new flight, a process I would get too used to doing.

They moved me to a flight to San Francisco then to Spokane. The layover in San Francisco was two hours, which would give me plenty of time to make my flight to Spokane. If only…

I boarded the plane, eager to get to Spokane and see the friends I had missed for eight months. I had been scheduled to get in around 12:30pm, but because of the missed flight, I was going to get in at 5pm.

And then we sat. Apparently some part of the fuel system wasn’t working properly and we sat at the gate for an hour, waiting for our flight to begin. Finally, they deemed the plane unusable and had prepared another plane for our flight.

We all got off the plane and moved to another gate in another concourse to finally get moving. After a long line, I got back on the plane, with hope of making my flight to Spokane quickly dimming.

That flight just felt like it would never end. But, finally, it did. I took a shuttle to the other side of the airport and knew that I had missed my flight. I got to the gate and sure enough, I missed it. I got a new route to Portland then to Spokane and walked my way to the other side of the airport to wait.

At this point, I was exhausted and ready to be done. I hadn’t eaten or slept at all and was running on just three or so hours of sleep.

To save you some time I will condense the following process. I boarded, flew in to Portland, waited for three hours, boarded my plane to Spokane, fell asleep on the plane, woke up to see my city in the window and wanted to shout for joy.

After more airports than I wanted to see, ten more hours than I wanted to spend in said airports, I had made it.

During all this, one of the wheels on my suitcase broke in Chicago and my belt broke in San Francisco. It seemed everything was going wrong. Yet, while everything was going wrong, one thing was right. God and His control, love, and sovereignty never left me. I nearly lost my sanity, my patience, and my hope, but by the grace of God and the truth of His sovereignty, I didn’t actually lose them. I made it safely and differently than I wanted, but God had control the whole time.

A Bold Faith in a Bold God

It seems that ever day a new fiasco happens. We have shootings, a gradual decay of our rights, and sin filling every empty space in our world. It’s easy to see the darkness and to get caught up in it. But I fear the more we do that, the less we see the hands of God holding us all together. You see, no matter how dark things get, there is always light. The light of Jesus. If He is truly our hope, then we are never without light; we are never without hope.

It would be ignorant to say there isn’t darkness. There is. But to say there is no hope and no light, is far more ignorant.  Christian, the God of the universe holds us in His strong hands and He won’t be letting go. No matter what happens, good or bad, we can know that He is in control.

It is a lot easier said than done, but it must be done. To be a Christian without a true faith that God is in control is a hopelessly lonely way to live while in the arms of God.

He’s got us. He always has and always will. Let us with bold faith, knowing God is in control and nothing happens without His knowing, for we serve a bold God.

The darker things appear, the bigger the opportunity for light to shine.

Numbers

We are in a culture that are very easily impressed with numbers. I get easily impressed with numbers. Number have become the way to judge success and influence. Numbers can be a great thing! Don’t get me wrong, because numbers mean an audience and an audience can mean an influence. The problem comes when it is all about the numbers. When your audience becomes just another number, it is time to refocus. Because it isn’t about the numbers. It’s about the people you are influencing. Whether you have a thousand followers on Twitter or 20, you have a voice. Use it and don’t worry about the numbers.

Finding success in your numbers leads to a total emptiness. If you want to be a YouTuber and you see the millions of views on others’ content and a few views on yours, you will begin to doubt your abilities and worth. Trust me. It’s the same with blogging, retweets, and Facebook/Instagram likes. If you are putting out content to get recognition through your numbers, you’re doing it wrong.

You are worth more than any number or lack thereof. If you are involved with any type of content creating, don’t worry about the numbers, just create. Pray that what you are doing glorifies your Creator and that it will make a difference.

Not being motivated by numbers is one of the hardest things for me to do. I am fascinated by numbers and desire larger numbers. But doing anything out of that motivation is an incredibly empty and shallow motivation. No one likes to be treated like a number, especially for someone else’s success.

Whether you have small numbers or big numbers, you have influence. Use it, don’t abuse it, and don’t find your worth in the numbers. Find your worth in the Creator who gave you the PEOPLE to listen and read what you have to say.

Let’s start a movement of passionate content creators that couldn’t care less about the numbers.

The Sweet Love of God

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking today about the love of God.

It’s an indescribably complex topic of thought and discussion. I can’t do it justice in the least. But I know that His love is the purest of loves. It is one that cannot be competed with.

The love of God is sweet. No one is out of His love’s boundaries. The worst of sinners is welcomed with open arms into the love of God. The best, morally good person is welcome, though he will find his goodness is but dirty rags compared to the goodness of God in His love.

The love of God is beauty at its purest. A life that has not been touched by love of God has simply not existed. Everyone, believers or not, has been touched by the love of God in more ways than even describable here.

The love of God is accepting, but those being loved by Him will not go without change. God accepts all people, but He will not accept sin in His presence. He loves us too much to see us ruled by the sin He has freed us from. God despises sin. His children are expected to pursue holiness over sin. Like all great fathers, His love comes with consequence to those who do not obey. However, He does not reign with a paddle in hand, waiting to strike. His love brings us chance after chance. Sure, we will mess up and we will be messy.

But that’s what makes God’s love so sweet.

God knew when He built the Earth that we wouldn’t get it right and we would continue to mess up.

That’s why He sent Jesus!

Jesus became human, died on a cross, and rose again to show us that He loves us! He did all that to prove His love and to free us from bondage!

If you are struggling tonight with a sin of some sort, can I ask you to tell someone? Can I ask you to give it over to God? He doesn’t want you to suffer from the bondage sin holds you with. In fact, He loves you enough to hang on with you. Give it over to Him and let Him beat it for you.

That is the sweet love of God.

A love so pure, nothing can rid us of it. A love that bears all things with us. A love that fights all things for us. A love that loves again and again, no matter how many redoes we have to go through.

The sweet love of God is truly the only “true love” that will satisfy.

Embrace the unfailing, beautiful, sweet love of God tonight.

The Journey Begins

With a cheer, firecrackers, and Carson Daly, the new year was brought in. The anticipation of a year filled with many opportunities and growth is stronger this year than it has in the past for me. We have begun to set goals we want to accomplish, some big and some little, and today begins the journey.

The journey isn’t going to be easy, however. In fact, some days it’ll get to the point when we might just not do what ever it is we have set out to do. In a week the passion and desire will get less and less and pretty soon we will have forgotten all about the goals we made and we will continue into 2013 the same as we did last year.

And the year before that.

And the year before that.

And so on and so forth.

But, we don’t have to let defeat be the only answer. Sure, the excitement of the new year and new goals will wear off, but that shouldn’t keep us from stopping. That shouldn’t be the reason we look back on December 31, 2013 and wish 2013 had been different. Because when I look back one year from now, I want to see where i have gone, what I have done, and how God did it all through weak little me. Some of my goals aren’t even big, but I know I will benefit from getting into the habit of doing them.

So this year, the year 2013, let it be the year we accomplished our goals. Let it be the year we kept on moving even when everything in us wanted to stop. Let it be the year God used us in mighty ways because we didn’t give up and we clung on to the God who gave us purpose and helps us reach that purpose.

The Church VS Abortion

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the relationship the church has with abortion. Relationship may be the wrong word… War is a better term for the versus the church and abortion carries against each other. Before I write what has been on my mind, I want you to know that I am against abortion and in no way support it.

You may agree with me and you may not; I like that. The church has been very open about their hatred against abortion. Everyone knows how little the church can tolerate abortion. And I don’t think we should tolerate it. We should be against it. It is ungodly and it is without a doubt, against God and His creation. We protest abortion and we advocate all pro-life advocates. We cry out to God to change the country that has turned its back on Him and has gone their selfish and sinful way. But here is what I have been thinking: If they know we hate abortion, have we offered them anything else? Have we offered those thinking about having an abortion or have even had an abortion any hope? The church has been called to reflect Christ’s light. We have been commanded to love our neighbors out of our love for God. My concern is that in our hatred towards abortion, we have painted a picture of hatred towards those who are involved with abortion. We are quick to spew our hate for abortion like we spew something sour, but we should be quicker to offer help, healing, and hope in Jesus’ name to those who are involved in issues like this. I fear we haven’t done our part. It’s clear the church is against abortion, that much is sure. The church is outspoken about their hate for abortion. They are, however, too silent about the grace and hope in Christ for those who’ve had abortion.  Have we offered open arms to the girls who made a poor decision and instead of dealing with it, chose to abort the consequence? Have we been too quick to anger and not quick enough to offer hope? Christ is love and in the Gospel is found true hope and grace. In our repulsion of all things abortion, we have missed the beauty of the Gospel. The Gospel offers hope, grace, and forgiveness through God; love, yet it is missed in our message. Our cheesy posters and guilt-deploying anti-abortion tactics do not offer the Gospel for the lost. 

I am calling the church to offer open arms to those involved in abortion. To love those who support and have done what we are against goes against our nature, making it radical. We have been offered radical love by Christ and, in turn, must offer the same radical love and forgiveness to those in need of it. In case you missed it, we are all in need of it.

Let us give the girls who have had abortions a second chance. It’s what Christ has done and will continue to do. We must reflect Him.