The best part of my story is that I am married but never desired to be; and thankfully, this journey has expanded my knowledge of what love actually is.
For me, virginity until marriage was never the goal. My goal was simply to please God by seeking purity! Pleasing God is what made me submit myself and my sexuality to God’s word, that is what kept my virginity. Because of this submission, God’s plans for me, including marriage, prevailed.
Although this sounds easy, it wasn’t.
As a child, I was molested and sexually assaulted repeatedly by a woman and four men. Sexual desires were affixed to me as a child. These urges led to secret sins like pornography and masturbation. It took time to acknowledge and heal from these assaults; I even tried to forget them. I thought I had moved on; however, internally, I struggled. I was emotionally detached and felt that even though I was a virgin, I was not pure. My image haunted me, whereas people saw me and assumed I was perfect. They did not know I was dealing with secret sins, pain, depression, and even suicidal thoughts inside.
I hated not pleasing God. I repented often and commanded breakthrough and deliverance over my life. I accepted my past and made a conscious choice to seek help and change. During this time, it was important that I did not over-spiritualize what was needed in my soul (mind, will, and emotions). “Over-spiritualize” meaning someone could pray or lay hands on me to make the situation disappear when what I needed was prayer and support to endure that season. Prayer and living a Godly life kept me from losing myself and shutting down emotionally, the Holy Spirit helped me endure the process.
By my freshman year in college I was tired of being the angry black girl, having suicidal thoughts, and living with so many secrets. I was left with no choice but to pursue purity in my life; spiritually and physically. Purity was not an overnight process. My journey can be compared to purifying gold or making diamonds. Both are very strenuous processes, like these, purity is just as vigorous. Achieving purity for me took studying God’s Word, enduring tests, and resisting temptation constantly. I found the root of my bitterness by identifying generational cycles and then giving those to God. I applied the Word of God to my specific situation. In combination, I also utilized counseling to learn coping skills. Counseling gave me the opportunity to speak with a professional who could help sort and process my pain, depression, and anxiety. All my cards were on the table, everything exposed before myself and God.
Next, I changed what I prayed. I asked God that not only I be a virgin, but my future husband as well. I valued my purity and wanted to share my life with someone who understood that. In today’s times, a male virgin seems unfathomable because of double standards found in gender roles and human sexuality. Despite these stereotypes, I prayed for the vision God laid on my heart and continued to live for Christ. I became so consumed with ministry work I had forgotten my prayer and was no longer interested in marriage. I believed I was graced to be single and the idea of making the commitment to devote all my time to the Lord was exciting! My plans were to work full time in the ministry and participate in foreign missions. Although I was not interested in a relationship during this time, I succumbed to peer pressure and found myself in a wounding relationship where I almost lost my identity. In this relationship I noticed I was losing myself. I would cling to his every word whether good or bad. My reactions were emotionally led and I found myself in misery. The joy and excitement I had for Godly things were now mechanical. I accepted how he treated me, my assertiveness became passiveness. The relationship eventually became physically aggressive and that is when I removed myself. This failed relationship pushed me even further from the thought of marriage. A callous on my heart formed causing me to change my perception and drift away from church.
While separated from the church, I found myself very busy. I was attending grad school which consumed my day with class, studying, and interning. My days ran together, there was no time to sleep, and I did not have room for anything else on my schedule. But I began to realize that, even with as busy as I was, my heart was empty; I was numb spiritually and emotionally. I was shutting down, and on top of all that I was going through; I experienced several family deaths, including my grandmother, two younger cousins, and a close friend. As painful as those deaths were, they opened up a new season in my life, a season that initiated the greater healing that I had been pursing.
I moved back to my hometown of Houston. Upon moving home, I ended my pursuit to earn a graduate degree and refocused on ministry work. While at a funeral, I saw my husband for the first time! The initial attraction I had for him superseded his physical appearance, it was a feeling I had never felt before. The best way I can describe it is like an awakening, my eyes were opened to something new that I was seeing for the first time. What makes my initial reaction fascinating is that I knew of my husband before we met. We had attended the same church but were never in one another’s company. I had spoken to his mom on an occasion as she had inquired about my personal life. She asked questions like, “Are you seeing anyone? Are you engaged?”. My answers were all “No”. She asked me to write my number down and coincidentally I wrote my number on the front page of her bible! I did not realize that her son would be calling me, I thought she wanted my number for her future use. When he called, we talked for at least an hour, and within that conversation God told me he was my husband. It was very clear to me that this message was from the Holy Spirit. During the conversation, he also mentioned he was a virgin, this was confirmation of my feelings. At that point, I was clear he would be my husband, however, I did not tell him. I let God lead him and lead our relationship, it was important to me that he could hear from God. After this, we went on a date to the movies and the rest was history.
We dated for three years, we chose to do things according to God, the favor that a man obtains when he finds a wife is given in abundance. Our favor came in the form of support. We did not want for anything! Within those three years there were moments of struggle but we did not want to go into marriage prematurely and knew the risks of sex, so we waited until our wedding day. In moments of our greatest temptation I had accountability partners that checked on me and held me responsible for my actions. My husband and I had time restraints and boundaries in place, which is very important.
We are now embarking on one year of marriage, and a newborn baby. God’s hand and peace has been on our marriage. Even during conflict His word and love have guided us, we could not ask for anything more.
I believe it is the purity of our hearts that allowed us to see, expect, and discern between truth and imagination. Many like the idea of marriage, but MARRIAGE is no fairytale, it is a work, it is a ministry. Our love grows daily and so does our understanding of our purpose together. It is worth the wait because when you are waiting in God, he will make it worth your while. The struggle is “real” but I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God has honored our commitment to Him. Through our virginity we got to know each other without comparison, the purity we learned and practiced flows into our marriage, and our home and bed is uncompromised. As our hearts desires line up with the word of God we receive what God has designed for us.
Don’t remain a virgin or celibate to make a statement but desire purity of your heart and everything in your life will line up to God’s will.