So what do you think? Does the Bible teach us to be sensuous women? Some of you are thinking Kathy’s talking about sex again. Maybe! But maybe not!
I have had some interesting dialog with women who desire to be all that God has created them to be. But they are not sure what to do with issues of sexuality/ sensuality when they are single and longing to honor the Lord.
I have heard one woman after another share that much of the pain in their life has to do with wrestling with issues related to sexual or sensual issues. There is God’s view to reckon with which has been confusing to women on so many levels. There is the world’s view which seems to indicate to just ‘be free’ sexually. However much of the ache these women now feel is because those behaviors don’t feel free like it does in the movies.
So can we be single and sexual? What does God want from us if he created us to be sexual beings, whether we are married or single, while the Bible teaches that sex is reserved for marriage.
Dr. Juli Slattery of AuthenticIntimacy.com hits the mark as she addresses this topic in her 2 minute Thought called Can I Be Single and Sexual? Juli reminds us that our sexuality is not compartmentalized waiting for marriage, it is integrated into all the aspects of who you are; intellectual, relational and spiritual.
We are geared to immediately associate sexuality with sexual pleasure. But it actually serves a much greater purpose. Juli goes on to say that sexuality is about intimacy and relationship. The core aspect of our sexuality is the yearning to be known and share intimately with another person, which is expressed fully in marriage. My sexuality as a woman deeply impacts how I relate to others- outside the bedroom.
(Be sure you listen in to hear the rest of Juli’s comments. There is a wealth of information for married or single women at authenticintimacy.com.)
As I pondered how we might experience intimacy that was not sexual, especially for the single woman, I dug a little further with a word study on the word SENSUOUS which is defined as “anything that is pleasing to the senses”. In other words, anything that we touch, taste, see, smell and hear. There are many ways we can experience intimacy in
- a furry kitten resting calmly in our hands
- a delicious meal shared with friends
- a beautiful sunset filling our sight
- a pie baking in the oven smelling so good, tasting even better
- an incredible symphony
These are examples of sensuous things make our senses happy, but they also nurture us and allow us to know a deep joy and possibly meaningful intimacy with relationships of family and friends.
I understand that many times the effects of past encounters, or abuse related to sexual activity can taint the purity of a sensation. Certain senses can become triggers for memories or behaviors that you are desperately trying to avoid.
So often, rather than risk something “unpleasant” (though it might be much more damaging than that word denotes), we end up closing ourselves off to everything that might stir our senses.
But remember, God is a redeeming God. He created you to be sexual. He gave you your senses to live fully alive. Yes, there is pain! Yes, there is pain that needs healing, and your senses maybe part of that.
But each of our senses are faithful, loving reminders that God is breaking into our world everyday to speak his words of love to us.
What is it that God is inviting you into as you consider how to live sensuously as a sexual being? Maybe you have some questions about what that would look like. I know some women who are making it work. Let’s have that discussion together.
In the mean time, Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. Psalm 34:8