Archive for ‘Linky Love’

June 11, 2014

Linky Love: Dating, Sex, and the Single Christian

Gentle Reader,

Surely it comes as no surprise to you that I think sexuality, like everything else, has an awful lot to do with theology. And while I appreciate what is at the heart of the abstinence movement of my youth, many folks have struggled with this formulation of waiting – and understandably so. It turns out that treating sexuality like something you can just shove down into a tiny corner of your soul and then magically let loose when you get married is unhealthy and, frankly, absurd. To focus on abstinence is to focus on inactivity – almost hoping our sexual natures can somehow be rendered comatose until the wedding. But chastity is something different. Chastity, you see, always says “YAY MARRIED SEX!” (even when neither party is remotely good at it yet). It looks at sexual desire and says, “Aha! I know what you are for!” Chastity is both protector and celebrant of the marriage bed.

I feel like this something a lot of Christians in my generation, especially women who were raised in the Church, struggle with understanding. But the only way we can get any kind of handle on this sex stuff is if we are talking about it in its real-life contexts – marriage, dating, and pining for a spouse. In fact, I would argue that our sex drives ought to act as another motivation to pursue marriage – and we should let them!

Below are some recent articles and blog posts that I found helpful as I’ve recently again though through all this sex, dating, and the single Christian stuff. Hopefully you’ll find some wise and significant thoughts here to mull over, whether you’re single yourself or just walk faithfully with those of us who are as our friends.

“Should I Be Content with My Singleness?” – I think about this a lot – that sometimes God works through unmet desires. Childs does a fantastic job taking this sort of musing further and deeper, connecting my story as a single woman with the greater story of what God is doing in the world. I love it. (I also really appreciate Childs’ conceptualization of abstinence before/until marriage as fasting. I find it encouraging and affirming: This waiting is an active thing. There is love in my abstention.)

“What If She’s Not the Right One?” – This is an excellent article on fighting against a consumer-attitude in dating, one that I found full of helpful reminders and cajoling. Sure, it’s aimed at the gentlemen in the crowd, but I found it convicting too.

How to Respond to a Man’s Pursuit” – I have a lot of respect for Carolyn McCulley, especially because of the way she is so careful to regard men with respect and a desire to understand. This is a heartening piece, and one that serves as an excellent reminder to love our brothers well, whatever the awkwardnesses in our relationships. Key premise: “While we women exercise trust in God by waiting to be pursued, men exercise trust in God by risking rejection.”

“How to Pick a Life Partner: Part 1 (and Part 2)” – Need a little reality check in your daydreaming? (Who doesn’t?) I think this is cleverly written common sense, but as a “hopeless romantic” (so described since 3rd grade), I still need these kinds of reminders.

“Sexual Desire and the Single Woman” – Though I wish this post went further than it does, it is encouraging to read someone who is open about the strong sexual desires many single women deal with, and who sees the application of the transformational effects of the Gospel to the hearts of women in this area. Here’s the truth: If we belong to God, we have Christ. That radically impacts everything, including how we understand our sexuality and what we do with it.

“5 Lies That Make Sexual Purity More Difficult” – This article is a nice corollary to the one above, but hits home for men and women alike.

“4 Lies the Church Taught Me about Sex” – This is so outstanding and really needs to be heard and absorbed, especially #4.

“Why I Didn’t Wait” – This woman walks us through 10 lies that informed her ideas and practice of her sexuality during a long phase of her singleness.

“Walking the Aisle Without Your Virginity” – Piper has some good, Gospel words for a fellow who is struggling to know how to offer himself to the woman he will marry. Absolutely beautiful.

November 22, 2013

Linky Love, November 2013 Edition

Something New and Good: Our God Sunshines – This is an excellent post by a fellow RUF-worker-alumna about learning what a big deal it is to reflect on the glorious goodness of God. It’s not something easy to home in on for some of us serious, “nuevo-Puritan” types (clever descriptor is 100% Bekah), who are quite , and as you may have picked up on from my previous post, I was entrenched as a child – more than almost anyone around me – in the very type of severe gravitas Bekah discusses. I call myself a recovering legalist partly because I was so obsessed with sin – understanding it, digging it out, confessing it – sometimes confessing the same sin many, many times (not the same pattern recurring, but the same individual sins). And, like Bekah says, fighting sin is important. But the glorious goodness and magnificently generous kindness and the joy and laughter of our God are the point of the Gospel – not our disastrous messes. All that to say, go read it.

Giving Thanks: For Finding My Ring and Not Marrying a Pothead – My friend Missy is a delightful storyteller. This post made me smile a big, big smile, so I thought I’d share.

The Ridiculous Grace of Adoption – Marissa Cope, another cherished friend of mine, came out with this excellent piece on adoption over at The Gospel Coalition. November is National Adoption Awareness Month. (Yes, I know it’s also Movember and Native American Heritage Month and Lung Cancer Awareness Month and National Novel Writing Month and NoShaveNovember and a host of other things, but it is also Adoption Awareness Month, and y’all know how obsessed I am with adoption.)

How to Date When You’re Sick – This is an uplifting post by fellow-endometriosis-sufferer Rachel Meeks, who has come up with some pretty creative ways to have a good time with her husband even when she feels like crap. (Also, they sound like crazy-fun people I would like to hang out with, which always makes posts like this more interesting.) Her blog, Do I Look Sick?, is a new favorite. (She even has a post on flaxseed, which I found immensely helpful. Because, believe it or not, flaxseed has actually become an issue in my life.) It’s encouraging to see how other women are making life work despite the uncertainties, pains, and frustrations of this disease.

Dot Dot Dot – This is internet-old (almost 4 years old) but it still has me in stitches every single time. A voice actor does a dramatic reading of a game review by some kid whose spelling and grammar don’t suggest much hope for our education system. Add in awesome graphic design/typography/craziness and some, um, mood music, and it’s about the funniest thing I’ve ever seen. In case y’all missed this hilarious little video – well, carpe diem.

April 18, 2012

Linky Love

This is a reallllly random mix.