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TeensWhen To Have Sex
By Toni Smothers

Some teens pursue the kind of sex that avoids commitment and intimacy, leaving them lonelier than everÖ"Donít you know that those who do wrong will have no share in the Kingdom of God? Donít fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, who are idol worshipers, adulterers, male prostitutes, homosexuals, thieves, greedy people, drunkards, abusers, and swindlers Ė none of these will have a share in the Kingdom of God. There was a time when some of you were just like that, but now your sins have been washed away, and you have been set apart for God. You have been made right with God because of what the Lord Jesus Christ and the Spirit of our God have done for you. But your bodies were not made for sexual immorality." (1 Corinthians 6:9-11 & 13b NLT)

You are children of God and because of that, you must set and hold to a higher standard. Godís kids wait to have sex for their wedding night and honor their heavenly father and themselves by doing so.

Letís assume that you do want to wait, but your partner is pressuring you to have sexÖ

"Finally, dear brothers and sisters, we urge you in the name of the Lord Jesus to live in a way that pleases God, as we have taught you." (1 Thessalonians 4:1:1 NLT)

"God wants you to be holy, so you should keep clear of all sexual sin. (1 Thessalonians 4:3 NLT)

What your partner wants canít become more important to you than what your heavenly Father wants.

Boy is that ever easier said than done Ė Can I get an Amen? "How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word and following its rules." (Psalm 119:9 NLT)

Godís Word is clear enough, itís just that you have these raging hormones and this tremendous capacity to rationalize behavior you want to engage in, even if you donít totally understand all of the ramifications.

Sometimes people have sex when they donít even really want to just to please someone else. Teens can get all mixed up with a need to please their partner, or to be thought of as popular and loved. How is it that everyone elseís reason for doing it is more valid then your reasons for not doing it?

Shouldnít such an important issue be decided together, at a time other than the heat of the moment? Doesnít intimacy involve mutual consent? This is one of the most important decisions of your life and definitely not to be taken lightly. Allowing yourself to get into a position where the heat of passion can cause you to make the wrong choice is foolish. You must discuss the subject of sex openly in a neutral, safe environment, explaining how you treasure your virginity and intend to give it as a beautiful gift to your husband or wife. Wouldnít a partner that really loves you be willing to wait to have sex until it was the right time for both of you? If you ask your partner to revere your need to wait to have sex until marriage and to help you stick to it, a stronger, healthier bond will develop between you Ė one of trust and mutual respect, which is the perfect foundation to build a marriage on.

Sometimes people (not just teens but all different ages) try to use sex to keep a partner from leaving the relationship Ė how much true love is involved in that scenario?

If youíve already made the mistake of giving yourself to another and now realize what a huge mistake you have made, just pour out your heart to your heavenly Father who will surely forgive you. Just determine to begin fresh and save yourself from now on for your one true love Ė your husband or wife to be. It can still mean a lot to your future partner to know that you came to realize how much you wanted to be valued and honored by your mate and though you didnít understand how important your gift of celibacy was then, you do now.

And donít be fooled into thinking that everyone else is doing it. Guess what? Theyíre not. Lots of people like to talk, but what they say isnít always true. Anyway, having sex because of what others think will not strengthen a relationship. And having sex when you know it goes against Godís will is a surefire way to weaken your own self esteem and give Satan a good foothold in your life.

So howís your self esteem? If itís high, you feel good about yourself and how youíre living most of the time. You trust yourself to make good decisions and you expect others to respect your decisions. If itís low, you feel like you just donít measure up, like you make more mistakes than good choices. You look to others to verify that you are really not so bad.

"But if they canít control themselves, they should go ahead and marry. Itís better to marry than to burn with lust." (1 Corinthians 7:9) Very few teens are ready for marriage. Get smart and take control of your lust and your body. God made you perfect and you have a precious gift that should be guarded and protected until you give the gift of your whole self to your true love and spouse.

"But because there is so much sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman should have her own husband. The husband should not deprive his wife of sexual intimacy, which is her right as a married woman, nor should the wife deprive her husband. The wife gives authority over her body to her husband, and the husband also gives authority over his body to his wife." (1 Corinthians 1:1-4 NLT) Marriage and sexual union are designed and blessed by God. But timing is everything.

Also, waiting to have sex means you wonít have to worry about pregnancy or contracting a sexually transmitted disease.

Just know that you can love your partner without having sex. You can kiss and hug and do fun things together. You can be yourself, a beloved child of God, without fear or guilt.
Toni Smothers is a child of God, wife, mom, grandmother, writer and lay-speaker. She has had serious exposure to the rougher side of life and from that experience has been left with a heart full of love for others who struggle with learning about our beautiful Savior. Through her writing, Toni delights in helping young people especially, who are seeking to find a true, intimate relationship with their Heavenly Father. You can write to Toni through the Your Letters page of this magazine.
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