Sex is Yours

My daughter is six-years old and full of questions. Why, how, huh? All day long. In her questioning, she has inevitably asked me about sex. When I was hugely round and very pregnant with her youngest brother, she asked how he came to be in my belly and how he would make his way out.

After giving the most scientific and precise answer I could, I ended with “Does that make sense?” To which she paused and replied, “Not really.”

Fair enough.

I fret not because I know that this initial conversation about sex will be one of hopefully many. Yes, I said hopefully many.

Because I want my children to ask me lots and lots of questions about sex. I want them to feel free to bring up the topic at bedtime, at the dinner table, when we are baking cookies (let’s be honest…this isn’t happening. I’m not Martha Stewart), whenever.

And I want the nitty gritty questions asked like:

What’s oral sex?

How about masturbation?

Is heavy petting okay? (is it still called that or is it just “dry humping” these days?) Continue reading Sex is Yours

How to Fight in Marriage

Look, I’m gonna be honest and please don’t hate me, but Jonathan and I rarely fight. I think I can count on one hand the number of times we have really “fought,” and that is simply amazing for over 7 years of marriage.

So, now that I sound like the biggest marriage-bragger-snob-lady-ever, let me also say that I know that we are a rarity and more often than not, most couples argue on occasion. And sometimes, just sometimes, a good fight is necessary in marriage.

I also admit, that when Jonathan and I do have a battle royale, we have rules. That’s right. There are rules of engagement, which have become the parameters for our “fighting.”

Rules for fighting help, and can prevent scuffles from turning into winner-takes-all-death-matches. Here’s how we fight. First up… Continue reading How to Fight in Marriage

Singled Out: Does the Church Ignore Singles?

A while ago, I had a someone email me and ask whether or not I believed the church pushes marriage. I immediately thought, yes, I think the church does push marriage.

But should it?

Do we really want the message that the church promotes to be one of marriage versus singleness? Is marriage a sort of spiritual achievement worth striving for and if so, where does that leave all those who are single?

So yes, the church at large places marriage on a pedestal. However, I think part of the reason the American church idolizes marriage is a bit less honorable than we might suspect. Continue reading Singled Out: Does the Church Ignore Singles?

Women Who Idolize the Wrong Men

Today’s guest post is written by none other than my awesome cousin, Ryan Goble. Ryan is a recent college graduate and when I asked him to write about some of his observations about young single women and the ways they view men, he didn’t let me down. His thoughts here are insightful, challenging, and, in my opinion, right on. I hope you enjoy!

Lately, I have noticed a trend among college women and especially Christian college women. I see this trend as a cancer in the church that desperately needs to be cut out before it kills a generation of men and women…

For generations it has been expressed that men are the ones who deal with issues of lust and desire. Yet, with the modern day movie and music star, I believe that our women are being greatly affected by society’s lies of what they should be looking for in a man. I believe that this issue has been buried so deep that we often do not even see it as an issue.

Have you ever been with a group of women and listened to them talk about how they are “in love” with their favorite movie star? Or how they are going to watch their “boyfriend” on the big screen? Do you know women who talk non-stop about the men they idolize and how great it would be if they could just be married to them?

Have you ever heard women talk about a man’s abs or his arms in ways that their husband (or future husband) would NOT be happy? If you haven’t heard a woman talk like this, I’m happy for you, because as a man, it sucks.

But here’s the clincher: I believe that modern day romance films and “sexy” actors and musicians are doing the same thing to women that pornography is doing to men. Here’s how… Continue reading Women Who Idolize the Wrong Men

Ditch Your Dating Checklist

When I was 20 years old, I had it all figured out. Like most people my age, I had a plan–a timeline really–of exactly how things should go and when they should happen.

I, of course, like any good Christian girl, submitted my timeline to God. I passed Him the memo, you know, just so He could stay in the loop.

Here’s what my plan consisted of:

Graduate college at 21. Score my dream job in New York, preferably working for some type of political non-profit, making peanuts, but not caring because I was doing what I loved.  Travel the world (you know with all the money I wasn’t making). Oh, and I was going to be married by 21. That’s right upon turning 21, I would have a ring on my finger and a church booked for the big day.

My husband wasn’t going to be just any man. He was to be a very specific type of man. I had a plan, remember? And with that plan also comes a list. It was the list of qualities, characteristics, and attributes I wanted in my future husband. It was quite the checklist really. It went something like this… Continue reading Ditch Your Dating Checklist

30 Things You Never Want to Hear Your Significant Other Say

It’s the first Wednesday of the new year, which means today I’m writing about my two favorite people: Men and Women. The blogosphere is all abuzz with the new Mark Driscoll book, Real Marriage. I thought I ‘d respond to some of the critics and supporters of the book, but alas, I decided to write something fun instead.

The following is a list of things you never want to hear your boyfriend/girlfriend or spouse say to you. We’ve all heard them too–the lame line that lingered in our minds. The mortifying comment we never shared with another soul. Perhaps you’ve even said some of these yourself. Disclaimer: Some of these comments are marriage specific, i.e. they deal with sex, so hopefully your boyfriend or girlfriend wouldn’t be saying those things to you in the first place.

So let the unsavory, rude, embarrassing, and plain old selfish comments begin: Continue reading 30 Things You Never Want to Hear Your Significant Other Say

Are They “The One”?

So many of us are desperately looking for answers when it comes to dating, relationships, and marriage. One of the biggest decisions we will ever face is in choosing our future spouse. Is he/she the right one? How do we know we aren’t making a gargantuan mistake?  And where’s God in all of this? What does He have to say on the subject?

Turns out, not much. I mean, God doesn’t have as much to say as we would like to think. I know this from personal experience. You see, when I started dating my now husband, an old flame of mine re-entered the picture (it’s like they have “she’s moved on” radar). My ex-boyfriend essentially proposed to me. And what did I do, you ask…

Continue reading Are They “The One”?

How Far is Too Far When Dating?

Ever wonder what exactly is acceptable from a purity standpoint within a dating relationship? Is holding hands the extent or can you make-out (with tongue)? What if you happen to do a little more…where do you draw the line?

Well, my friend and writer Ally Spotts just wrote an e-book called Asking All The Wrong Questions: Why Christians are Waiting for Marriage for Sex? Basically, Ally demystifies this question and challenges Christians to begin asking the right questions about sex.

I was lucky enough to get my hands on an early copy and let me tell you, Ally pulls no punches. She says what everyone is thinking. If you are a single Christian navigating the dating world have you ever asked yourself any of these questions: Continue reading How Far is Too Far When Dating?

In Hot Pursuit: Should Men or Women Pursue?

Women have long held the idea that men are suppose to pursue them. There used to be a time when girls were forbidden–or at the very least, discouraged–from calling a man, let alone asking one out.

Times have changed, however, and many women now feel that it is perfectly acceptable for women to ask out (or *ahem* even chase down) the opposite sex.

But do these same standards apply to Christians? Is it kosher for a single Christian woman to pursue a man or should men always be the pursuer?

For starters, let’s look at God. He is the ultimate pursuer. He comes after us, romances us, and wins us with His love. Likewise, each and every follower of Christ should be in full pursuit of Him first and foremost before they ever worry about pursuing the opposite sex. Okay, now that we got that out of the way…
Continue reading In Hot Pursuit: Should Men or Women Pursue?

Christian Dating: Dos and Dont's

Recently, a few girls I know in their twenties, wanted to talk with me about “being single.” They asked me an array of questions like, “Why do I need to be single? How can I be content while being single? How do I let a guy pursue me?” and so on.

This post could go into a million different directions. The topic of “singledom” is always a hot one, especially in Christian circles. I’d like to hone in on one particular facet of the single Christian life (and save the other stuff for the next two Wednesdays): Dating.

To those who are married, “dating” sounds almost like a four letter word. My skin kinda crawls and I think, “Man, I’m so glad that’s over.” Terrible, right? I mean, I don’t know many Christians who actually enjoy dating. They are so focused on “finding the right one” and “hearing from God” and looking out for “lightning in the sky” that they suck all the fun out of it.

Dating should be fun. Why is it that so many single Christians turn dating into some kind of checklist and interviewing process? Ladies are the worst with the checklist. Here’s a tip girls: if you have a checklist, look it over, count up all those necessary character traits, then crumple it up and chuck it in the trash bin—‘cause that’s where it belongs.

God doesn’t care about your list… Continue reading Christian Dating: Dos and Dont's