(Note - I accidentally hit the post button before this was really ready, so if you read this between 10:30 and 11:10pm on 8/17/04, it looks a little different than it does now).
Sorry, I couldn't resist the title. After my last post about Bobos in Paradise, wherein I realized that my ticket to fame and fortune was to right a book called "The Purpose Driven Sex Life," I figured I would go ahead and start my quest for said fame and fortune with a blog post on the subject. If having the words "purpose driven" and "sex" in a post title don't get me some hits, then hits just can't be had.
Of course, I realize that I am stepping into dangerous waters here, talking about sex and all. I remember Roger Staubach telling of how he got in trouble with his wife one time. An interviewer had asked him something about his sex life and he said that he enjoyed sex (shocking! on national TV no less). His wife was embarassed. I guess the revelation that all of America now knew what she had been doing and with whom was more than she could take. So, I will have to be careful lest I give off the impression that, like Roger Dodger, I too enjoy sex. Of course I will have to be just as careful to not give off the impression that I don't enjoy sex. Maybe I should just stop typing now.
Well, those of you who have read my blog before know that once I start typing, I find it hard to stop and this post will be no exception. I should say that this is going to be part tongue in cheek, but partly serious. It's also going to be fairly one dimensional in that I recognize that there are several purposes to sex, and I'm really only going to focus on one purpose. I suppose I should also issue the disclaimer that I'll be a little more blunt in a few cases than I would from the pulpit. However, what I call blunt will be considered pretty tame or prudish by most people. Well, enough the disclaimers and qualifiers, let's talk about sex.
This will be part 1 of at least two posts on the subject.
Generally, Christians are thought to be pretty negative about sex. Most of the time when Christians talk about sex it is for the purpose of telling teenagers and singles to avoid it. It also comes up when we talk about the consequences of adultery. I thought I would begin by giving a silly example of how Christians are often thought to view the sexual relationship. Many think that Christians would approve of the advice given to young brides by Ruth Smythers. Here are a few excerpts from her article
Instruction and advice for the young bride
On the Conduct and Procedure
Of the Intimate and Personal Relationships
Of the Marriage State
For the Greater Spiritual Sanctity
Of this Blessed Sacrament
And the Glory of God
To the sensitive young woman who has had the benefits of proper upbringing, the wedding day is, ironically, both the happiest and most terrifying day of her life. On the positive side, there is the wedding itself, in which the bride is the central attraction in a beautiful and inspiring ceremony, symbolizing her triumph in securing a male to provide for all her needs for the rest of her life. On the negative side, there is the wedding night, during which the bride must pay the piper, so to speak, by facing for the first time the terrible experience of sex.As Carolyn Mahaney says in her book Feminine Appeal, "don't we all feel sorry for Mr. Smythers. BTW, you can see the whole article by Mrs. Smythers here.
At this point, dear reader, let me concede one shocking truth.Some young women actually anticipate the wedding night ordeal with curiosity and pleasure! Beware such an attitude! A selfish and sensual husband can easily take advantage of such a bride. One cardinal rule of marriage should never be forgotten: GIVE LITTLE, GIVE SELDOM, AND ABOVE ALL, GIVE GRUDGINGLY. Otherwise what could have been a proper marriage could become an orgy of sexual lust.
Feigned illness, sleepiness, and headaches are among the wife's best friends in this matter. Arguments, nagging, scolding, and bickering also prove very effective, if used in the late evening about an hour before the husband would normally commence his seduction.
Clever wives are ever on the alert for new and better methods of denying and discouraging the amorous overtures of the husband. A good wife should expect to have reduced sexual contacts to once a week by the end of the first year of marriage and to once a month by the end of the fifth year of marriage.
By their tenth anniversary many wives have managed to complete their child bearing and have achieved the ultimate goal of terminating all sexual contacts with the husband. By this time she can depend upon his love for the children and social pressures to hold the husband in the home. Just as she should be ever alert to keep the quantity of sex as low as possible, the wise bride will pay equal attention to limiting the kind and degree of sexual contacts. Most men are by nature rather perverted, and if given half a chance, would engage in quite a variety of the most revolting practices. These practices include among others performing the normal act in abnormal positions; mouthing the female body; and offering their own vile bodies to be mouthed in turn.
A wise bride will make it the goal never to allow her husband to see her unclothed body, and never allow him to display his unclothed body to her. Sex, when it cannot be prevented, should be practiced only in total darkness. Many women have found it useful to have thick cotton nightgowns for themselves and pajamas for their husbands. These should be donned in separate rooms. They need not be removed during the sex act. Thus, a minimum of flesh is exposed.
One heartening factor for which the wife can be grateful is the fact that the husband's home, school, church, and social environment have been working together all through his life to instill in him a deep sense of guilt in regards to his sexual feelings, so that he comes to the marriage couch apologetically and filled with shame, already half cowed and subdued. The wise wife seizes upon this advantage and relentlessly pursues her goal first to limit, later to annihilate completely her husband's desire for sexual expression.
Contrary to Mrs. Smythers, the sexual act itself is a very pleasurable thing for the man and the woman and is blessed by God. Just read the Song of Solomon if you don't believe this. Or some of the Proverbs.
In my next post I'll talk some more about God's purposes for the our sexual lives and try to show the positive light that God views sex in.