Have sex or don’t have sex? That is the question. We live in a world where having casual sex is the driving force behind almost everything that we do. They say, “Everybody has it.” I used to say it. Today, my motto is: “Not everybody has it because I don’t.” Yes, this coming November will mark my 12 year celibacy milestone. I’ve been practicing sexual abstinence only by the sheer strength of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, as well as, the love and support of my family. I’ve been blessed in my journey as it has tried and worked out my patience in other areas. For His work and creativity in me, I call myself an over comer and a living testimony. However, I had not always been so victorious.
I’m going to be honest with you; I never had any intentions to see this thing through. My last sexual escapades were in November 2004 and not by choice. For some reason, guys seemed to stop paying my flaunting my goods any attention. It literally halted. So I wouldn’t feel the sting of rejection, I stopped trying to throw myself out there. I got the chance to start beauty college in 2005 and focused my energy there. I met a young lady who seemed really enthused about being a woman of God. She had all kinds of advice and books on it. One book, in particular, called to me: Your Knight in Shining Armor by P.B. Wilson. It described a 6 month reconstruction period on how women should see themselves as valuable in the eyes of God, how to prepare yourself for a godly man, and to take an inventory of what needs to change or stay the same in your life. A vow had to be taken in order to get my promised new life underway which included spending time with God and having absolutely NO contact with men. Period. I “promised” the Lord I would do it and began my consecration. Now, you may ask why I placed quotations around the word promised. My commitment wasn’t real because I actually didn’t believe God existed, so I just said the words with no heart behind them. Once I finished my process, I was going right back to my old way of life and that was having sex with whomever showed me their pearly whites. As I look back on my promise, I see the importance of keeping your word, whether to yourself, or done in secret behind closed doors. I learned this lesson quickly.
During the last couple of months of my reconstruction, I’d been invited to live with a married couple that I knew from church. I’d observed many people saying that they lived for God but these people were different and they revealed God’s true existence to me. I’d broken my vow, which no one knew I had made besides myself, by socializing with men online. Remember? In case it slipped your mind, I wasn’t supposed to have any contact with men in hopes to get to know them. The Lord disclosed this information to my new friends and when I was confronted, I was shocked. I finally knew there was an All Knowing True God. I was also mad because I could no longer just do as I pleased and now had Someone to answer to. Fear crept into my mind because I wasn’t sure what else God had revealed to the couple as I tried to look like a “good girl”. One thing was sure and it was keeping my vow. I refocused and grew quite curious about God and why He would choose someone like me of all people. My findings resulted in new wisdom that conquered the desires to be noticed by some man. The necessity to have wild, crazy, almost hostile sex was no longer mandatory. The seal of approval from men no longer held precedence over what God said about me. Fear of not having sex and being alone no longer resembled shame and failure as an “ideal woman”. I transformed into a new creation that even I couldn’t believe. My thinking and speaking were different and I knew I couldn’t go back to my former life. God had shown me entirely too much and I needed to know more.
In my new lifestyle, I gave God His time. He deserved it. I learned what He expected from, allowed of, and would not tolerate from me. I began to witness the goodness of God to others in hopes that many would change especially since some of them knew the former “Cheryl”. I was joy filled and told my testimony to whomever would listen of how premarital sex ruined my life and would give them the Good News as an antidote. Yes! I finally got it. My mind was made up and I set out to live a life pleasing to my Savior. When I let go and let God, my life seemed easier, but in fact; it became much harder as the trials of my faith rushed in like a flood.
The battlefield of the mind is real. The things we should not do are so easy to get into while that which we should entertain is accompanied by the most extreme of struggles. Oh goodness…the craziness ensued. There were many days that men just started appearing to me out of thin air when they had paid me no attention previously. I wanted to do what I knew worked in order to get what I wanted, as they would say all the right things. I’d gotten offers from many of them to “cure” me of my abstinence as if I’d contracted some rare disease. Attacks of ridicule and uneasy questionings came from some of my family, friends, associates, and unbelievers. Several of them assumed I had been brainwashed as they tried to remind me that they knew how I used to be. They would be offended and discussions would lead to full blown arguments. If that’s not all, I had to even fight against my own pride and reasoning for my stance when it would arise. This would happen at the most opportune times, definitely, when I would fall from my focus on God, Whom was my foundation for living this life in the first place. I wanted to have sex and badly. The sheer “taste” of it was greatly missed. I thought about it all the time and it seemed to be that way, more so, than it was when I was having sex. The amount of prayer and discipline I had to practice seemed no match for an insatiable appetite and I was hungry. I used to be president and ambassador in the sex world and Satan wasn’t letting that go easily. With all the hard work he invested in my sinning, that was not happening without a fight from that demon himself. Sexual dreams were becoming more frequent and severe as I would awake in panic, thinking I really had sex. Desires to be caressed and kissed sensually held my attention at an alarming rate. I’d even gotten to a point where self pleasuring had became an option but God had warned me about the consequences of such a decision if I had chosen to play with a flame that would have started a monstrous fire. I ignored the warning, thinking I could get away with it, and had gotten sicker than I ever had before in my life. Coincidence? I think not. Yup…God is not mocked. I made sure not make that mistake again. I desired to be kept much more than I desired to seek pleasure for my body and carnal mind. I prayed and prayed that the Lord would keep me because I knew if I messed up in this area, I would have messed up my life. I could have messed up the lives of those who heard my testimony. I knew people were watching me and waiting on my failure. So many things had come against me, but God was for me and still has my back every step of the way.
I don’t think I started this journey just because I picked up that book that day. I didn’t have to comply with its demands and even after realizing God was real, I didn’t have to continue this path because, honestly; who listens to and follows the Lord? I could have easily did as I pleased. No, I had to continue just because He had already given me a preview of what was in me during that reconstruction; Jesus was alive in me and I could do all things through Christ who strengthens me. I had no excuses to live otherwise. I was shown that I could live without the desires and demands of sex. It took some time but I did it and I’m still continuing to fight the good fight and I’ll run till I finish. I can’t be told just any old thing nor can some man flash his pearly whites and expect my Victoria’s Secrets to just start tumbling down. I live victorious as I am not afraid to speak of my highs and lows, the goodness of God and the importance of knowing who you are through Christ, as well as, the need for a loving relationship with Him. I am now a woman in waiting for the man made in God’s image especially just for me. I’ve waited all of this time, so failure is not an option nor is it in my vocabulary. If you are going to do this, it is necessary to identify your enemies as you count the cost of your walk with the Lord. Spoiler Alert: your enemy is not your family, friends, co-workers, or naysayers. It is an anti-Christ mindset. If you are going to go against Him, failure is impending. If your mind is set on either positive or negative, so shall your results be. That’s just in life in general. Reap the benefits of just waiting on the Lord because patience is a gift and a virtue and God gives of it freely.
I thank the Lord for allowing me the strength, confidence, and peace to write as He leads. I also thank Him for opening your eyes, ears, hearts, and minds to His peculiarities. May He draw close to you as you willingly draw closer to Him. He loves you that much.