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The Confessional

How do I reconcile my sex drive with God's commandments for me?

I have been struggling with loneliness a lot lately. I would love to be married, but I am also afraid that the only reason I want to is to have guilt-free sex with my husband....I want to obey God, but I also can't keep ignoring my desires. How do I reconcile my sex drive with wanting to obey God?


Oh Beloved, that is one doozy of a question, lyers upon layers! Where to start? How about here: what does it mean to obey God? Many of us are taught that the path to God's love and acceptance is straight, monogamous, and very narrow. That is a lie.

God is literally everywhere, in everything, including you, Beloved! Obeying God does not require mindless compliance to systems of power that use fear and shame to coerce us into submission to someone else's standards of goodness or faithfulness.

Enjoying premarital sex does not make you a bad person, any more than waiting until marriage makes you a good person. Same goes for practicing bisexuality, homosexuality, or being trans. It’s not that simple. What is right for one person, could be absolutely wrong and inauthentic for another. Faithfulness looks like honoring the unique gifts and specific truths that are at the core of who you are.

Your work, Beloved, is to dig deep into your own relationship with the Divine, to explore what is right for your life. Check out Psalms 139:1-18; it reminds me that God already knows your desires and adores you inside and out, and that no matter where you are or what you do, God will never leave or forsake you.

And if you need a reminder of the wild creativity and generosity of our Creator, check out Genesis 1, and specifically verse 26, for a reminder of who you are.

All the things God creates are called good, and human beings are called very good. Do you know the only thing in the entire creation stories of Genesis that God says is not good? Loneliness (Gen 2:18). Sex is never the answer to loneliness, but God already knows your desires and wants your life to be full of love, companionship, and happiness as much as you do.

In short, to obey God you have to be true to yourself and your own lived experience in relationship to the Divine. As long as you are living with authenticity and integrity, you will know better about your sexual practices than any black and white rule book on sex and marriage.

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