Here's another excerpt from my upcoming devotional on the subject of sex. Stay tuned!
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress; instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle; and it shall make a name for the Lord, an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.”
(Isaiah 55:8-9, 12-13)
My hope in writing this book is that your view of sex will shift in ways that help you live life more fully. Fidelity is a piece of that fullness. But sometimes the “wrong” kind of sex—even adultery—doesn’t end up being wrong.
Part of God’s joy in humanity is to watch us blossom into the best possible version of ourselves. God takes no pleasure in seeing us hiding who we are, pretending to be something we are not, or shrinking from dancing into our gifts. God wants you to be the most you possible; custom designed, unique unto yourself, created for a purpose.
If you aren’t being fully yourself, for example, if you’ve struggled within a heterosexual marriage but are gay, or if you are in an abusive relationship and trying to hang on for the kids, sex with someone outside that relationship can sometimes be a lifeline.
Don’t get me wrong; I’m not advocating cheating. I’m an advocate for monogamy with the right person. Infidelity causes lives to explode with rippling waves of damage. But life is messy. It’s all too easy to end up in relationships with people who can’t be the mate we need and deserve. Getting out of those couplings can seem downright impossible. Falling hard for (and having sex with) someone else can act as a rescue rope. Sometimes these relationships survive the life explosions and go on to endure, and sometimes they don’t. But either way, God can use them.
It’s possible you’ve experienced this yourself, and are struggling with guilt about the pain you’ve caused. But shame is corrosive and destructive. Being eaten alive by it isn’t useful, and doesn’t help make the world a better place. It stops you from entering into the freedom God desires, and prevents you from becoming fully realized. If you’ve violated a pledge of fidelity as a desperate action to save yourself, it’s time to let go of the shame. Do what you can to heal the damage, and move forward.
If you’ve been the person who was cheated on, and can look back to see that the two of you were not the match you’d hoped, please try to forgive and release them. God desires wholeness for you, too. God wants you free to soar into your own fullness of being. It’s hard for us to let go of what we’ve known and loved. It’s hard for newborn infants not to cling to the idea of absorbing oxygen direct from their moms. The doctor’s slap is painful, jarring, and frightening, but it jolts them into the next stage of becoming. When you’ve been jolted, the glaring light of a new reality can be hard to handle. But it will get better. Forgiving and releasing permits you to move forward.
Infidelity is painful and often shatters lives. But sometimes it is the earthquake that breaks open prison doors.
God writes straight with crooked sheets.
Sin is more than turning our backs on God - it is turning our backs on life! Immorality is much more than adultery and dishonesty: it is living drab, colorless, dreary, stale, unimaginative lives.