Nov 12, 2013

: life of a never-been-kissed-ex-porn-addict child of God

I don’t have a catchy opening line. Sorry.
It’s probably because I feel really, really uncomfortable writing this post.

The whole thing is strange because I’ve written about sexual abuse and being addicted to pornography and having an eating disorder on this blog. Still, my hands are jittery as I write this out: I’ve never been kissed and I don’t really want to until I’m engaged or maybe even married. And I want you to hear that sentence apart from images of your youth leader screaming things like, "Modest is hottest! True love waits! I kissed dating goodbye!"

Because my story isn’t everyone’s story, nor does it need to be. It’s a bizarre sexual dilemma because I was abused and addicted to pornography for years but I’ve never been kissed. My purity has been stripped away, but my purity has also been spared. Ultimately, my sexual identity, righteousness, and holiness can only come from Christ. Still, though, I’ve found it emotionally taxing to battle shame about both the things I have done and the things I haven’t done.

It reminds me of my senior year of high school when I saw the devastating images of Hurricane Ike on television. It leveled out the entire town of Gilchrist, Texas, with the exception of one home. Soon, pictures of the “last house standing” circulated around the Internet and news shows. It was a bizarre sight: a charming white and yellow house surrounded by a wasteland of debris. For whatever reason, God preserved this place and not another—he preserved Pam and Warren Adams instead of the Jones family down the street. It’s in inexplicable act of mercy.

In many ways, this is how I picture my sexuality. There are years and miles of damage surrounding me, but God chose to preserve one particular area of my purity. And I’d like to say it’s because I’m so awesome and said no to all my gawking suitors, but it’s not true. I put myself in dozens of stupid situations with men in the past five years. I don’t deserve to have anything left standing. It’s an inexplicable act of mercy. It is something to be celebrated.

Many people instinctually say, “Bless your heart, isn’t that the sweetest thing!” when they hear I’ve never been kissed. This belittles the gravity of the situation, though, because it’s not sweet. The last house standing isn’t sweet. It’s a fierce act of preservation. It’s divine kindness. It is bit of treasure found in my jar of clay, “to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to me. I am afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed” (2 Corinthians 4). It is humbling. It is grace.

I’m not sure why purity has become so cheesy nowadays, and I’m not trying to rally for “Virgin Lips” t-shirts. This isn’t a no-kissing revolution. It’s just my story, and my story’s all I have. I hope you find this to be an encouragement or maybe even a challenge. Really, I hope you see the mercy of God in it all.

(I’m going to press on “publish” and run away from my computer for the next year now. BYE.)