If this was Facebook memories it would read like this:
“February 22, 2016 – Jordan awoke with a stomach full of shame and regret. The kind she used to get after a night of heavy drinking or a hook up, except for this time she somehow managed to accomplish both.”
And while you question what the big deal is, I want to give you that back story myself.
When I had my first real boyfriend my sophomore year of high school, he asked me if I was a virgin because that’s what people did when they wanted to get to know you. I told him I was, and that I intended to be until marriage because that’s what Christians were supposed to do. That was that, except for it wasn’t.
I was raised in a Christian home, whatever that means. So naturally, I asked my mom what actually counted as this sex that we were not supposed to have. Like any concerned parent she asked me why I was asking and then proceeded to tell me that yes, foreplay and things alike counted as sex. Remember the saying, “doesn’t it all do the same thing anyway”? Well, depends on who you’re asking. I remember thinking, “dang it.” I’m dating this experienced guy, and I can’t do anything he wants me to do because of God.
Well as stories tend to go, I played with fire and made someone else more important than God. And I guess it was so easy to do because I had no personal relationship with him at this time in my life.
After I discovered what an orgasm was there was pretty much no turning back. Besides, this guy was a good guy, and he deserved to be pleased, what was so wrong about that? I’ve always had an overbearing conscious, and you bet I felt guilty after every time. I rationalized it because in my eyes I wasn’t actually having sex. The guilt got so bad however, I told my then boyfriend that I couldn’t be sexual with him anymore, and he was actually okay with that. Even if he wasn’t, I didn’t last long enough to find out.
I’d fantasize about us getting married because that’s what 16 year old girls do, or at least that’s what they did when I was 16, but anyway, I figured it’d all work out because we’d get married, or I could start my purity over when we broke up. Except for we broke up because he got bored, and I’m guessing he got bored because I’d never go all the way, and you know what, that hurt. It hurt so much that I gave my attention to this girl who I fell in love with until she broke my heart, and by the time I got to college I just didn’t care anymore, so I bet my virginity on a scrabble game. I actually won, but I was so over not getting the guy and still getting hurt anyway, that I gave in, and of course still didn’t get the guy.
I tried again, this time forcing a relationship, still didn’t get the guy. Oh, and he actually had a relationship he just didn’t tell me about, a few of them actually. I took a break, not to find God, but because I was over guys. Don’t worry, I met my fair share of girls in between too. Most times I decided I wasn’t going to openly be with them because I’d rather people not see my sin. I’d rather my sin in the form of blacking out and not knowing what happened the night before but hoping a condom was present, because at least there wouldn’t be those consequences. I went as far as to sleep with someone’s boyfriend. Not only did I not know God. I couldn’t even recognize myself.
I spent the last two years of college having sex in committed relationships, or what I thought were committed relationships. In fact, I felt so safe that the guilt still wouldn’t go away. I again told myself I’d change when the breakup came. The fact that I knew a breakup would come is sad within itself. I was risking a lot for something I didn’t even believe in.
I got my heart broken for the second time, right after college, and that was one of the best things that ever happened to me. I was free! I was in a place where I could truly begin to seek God. I didn’t know much, but I knew deep in my heart that he wanted my purity and always had.
A swipe to the right on tinder and a few puffs of a blunt, I was right back at it.
I surrounded myself with believer friends, and I went to church every Sunday, but I felt like a slave. I hadn’t cared about the spiritual aspects of my actions in a while, but I even got to the point where the requirements no longer included condoms. I dodged the dudes I met. I didn’t want to be doing this, so most of my encounters became one night stands. I was hurting people before they could hurt me.
When I moved after my internship I was led to attend a small group at this local church. I knew I needed to keep positive influences in my life, but what I found was my identity in Christ. I was beginning to understand God, see my life through his eyes, and experience the root of his love.
I truly became single and got to know myself. I sobered up and sought out the real me. During this time I had only “messed up” with one person, and for me that was a pretty good track record.
I tested negative for every STD screening, and I was ready to live a life of purity. Until, I met the next guy that was I ready to risk it all over again with. It was fine though. He’d been tested too, and I already blew it with him drunk so why not keep it up?
The guilt. I fell into deep depression. I remember conversing with a friend saying I couldn’t do it anymore. For the first time in my life I really broke things off with someone, and even though he was toxic, I felt guilty about that too.
He asked to meet up for my then favorite word, drinks. We got drunk, drove to a park, and had unprotected sex. That’s how I came to awake with the stomach full of shame and regret.
I laid in my bed for the entire day, broken. I thought it was for real this time. Why couldn’t I beat this? What was making me consistently go back to something that left me feeling such a void in my soul?
After I got sick of playing over how God would punish me in my head I reached out to a friend who told me when we trip we still fall forward. I had fallen down pretty hard, and awkward as I am she was right, I still hadn’t fallen backwards. I stopped beating myself up and instead let my mistakes encourage me.
By God’s grace I still didn’t test positive at my next STD screening. I never worried about being pregnant. Birth control and plan b were always my best pals. But that was always what I was so concerned about. I got so wrapped up in the physical consequences that if I could beat those my heart wasn’t in my purity. My heart wasn’t God’s heart.
Months went by, and I was in disbelief. The longest I had ever gone without sex was 4 months. It was a major milestone when 5 came. I met a girl who made the same decision I did, years ago, and she became a mentor who helped to hold me accountable. She was the one I went to when it seemed my same sex attraction was at an all-time high, when I found myself engaging in foreplay once more, and when I realized I was instead finding lust in pleasing myself. The battle with sin is; if it’s not one thing it’s another.
I didn’t write this blog to be judged, but more importantly, I didn’t write this blog to judge. I wrote this blog because I found out that God doesn’t need my help with deliverance like my friend Jenny tells me. I wrote this blog because I found out that God can use my sinfulness, my mess ups, and my fears to create my passions. My faith is something I haven’t talked about a lot in my past, but it’s deciding so much about my future that I can’t help but want to share. I would love to live a life of purity until marriage if marriage even comes, but I know every day is its own battle, and every day, I must choose for God to deliver me there. I didn’t decide this because it’s what Christians are supposed to do. My way just wasn’t working, and I finally surrendered to His. For me, that has made all the difference.