Why I Won't Regret Waiting Until My Wedding Night to Lose My Virginity
I was skimming Facebook the other day when I saw an article with a startling title, “I Waited until My Wedding Night to Lose My Virginity and I Wish I Hadn’t.” It wasn’t posted by the most reliable friend for good reads, so I kept scrolling. But then I saw it again…and again, from young ladies that I believe to be Christians. I took the bait and was troubled by what I found.
The author, a young woman named Samantha Pugsley, shares her experience of making a purity vow and how she grew to regret it. Her advice to unmarried women? “If you want to wait to have sex until marriage make sure it’s because you want to. It’s your body; it belongs to you, not your church. Your sexuality is nobody’s business but yours.”
Since I’m getting married in a month, I’d like to share my experience with you and consider if Samantha’s warning is valid:
It was on my 16th birthday and my parents took me out to dinner and gave me a true love waits ring. They talked to me about the treasure that sexuality is in the secure, God-ordained context. They warned me about the destruction that sexuality outside of marriage will bring. They told me that I would face pressures from boys to pursue temporary, uncommitted sexual pleasure instead of holiness. They reminded me that when I accepted Christ as an 8-year-old, He had called me to be set apart and part of that meant abstaining from sex outside of marriage. They told me it would be hard.
There were times when it seemed impossible, and times where my will failed, but, praise God, He didn’t! To His credit alone He sustained me and protected me from my flesh and the devastation of sexual immorality. He called me to repentance when I fell into the temptation to get close to the fire…but he did not call me to shame. Seeing the weight of my sin against a holy God and his forgiveness of a repeat offender like me has made my walk with Him so much sweeter. As I hit my 20’s, God continued to shape and grow me, but the more my friends got married…the more I was still single.
I had to know that my reason for remaining pure was the call of Christ.
Sure the Church called me to purity; sure my possibly existent future husband would appreciate it. These have warrant, but they are just the positive fruit of a higher calling. The minute I clung to anything but Christ for my reason to remain pure, I got a bad case of the “what ifs.” What if the other girls in the Church don’t remain pure? Why should the Church get to hold me to a higher standard? What if my future husband doesn’t even exist? What if I’m waiting forever? Sisters, if your motivation for purity is anything but Christ, these questions will destroy you. When friends fall into sin, Christ keeps my eyes fixed on the Cross and the ministry of reconciliation, not using comparison to try to lower God’s bar. If I never married, I know Christ would sustain me and give me the patience and the trust that He is good; and learning these things would sanctify me.
So, here we are. I get married in 3 weeks. Will it be worth the wait? I can confidently say yes. Not because it’s going to be all roses from here and that my purity alone guarantees God’s favor. But because my relationship with the Lord is worth these light and momentary troubles (2 Cor 4:17). He’s used the years to teach me to trust His commands. And that is a lesson that won’t stop having relevance on my wedding night.
But, according to Samantha’s experience, I will regret remaining abstinent and end up crying from shame on my wedding night. So why doesn’t her warning scare me?
Ultimately, I believe that her idea of God is not the same as mine or Scripture’s. She grew up with an understanding that extramarital sex would send her to Hell. But the Bible tells me that, though its earthly consequences may vary, all sin makes me deserving of Hell. It also shows me that no sin is unforgivable to those who put their faith in Christ.
She believes the Bible says that men aren’t called to sexual purity. Yet Scripture tells me that God gives them no pass on holiness (Matt 5:28). Samantha seemed to put her identity in what others thought about her. First Corinthians 1 teaches me to find my identity in Christ, who is the reason for any good in me. She thought that dating a boy who would put up with her pledge to stay pure was enough. The Bible tells me that being equally yoked means he should be striving after purity as well and be growing as a spiritual leader (Eph 5:23). Samantha played the game of how far is too far. But Scripture tells me that purity is about so much more than a single sexual act (Matt 5:28).
Samantha expected a chorus of angels on her wedding night but, instead, was surprised by her feelings of awkwardness. But, walking through godly premarital counseling has prepared me and my fiancé to talk openly about our expectations and fears and understand that awkwardness is completely normal as we learn to work together in this. She saw her virginity as her holiness and what made her special. The Bible teaches me that God’s intention before marriage is sexual purity, but, once married, it is becoming one flesh with my husband (Gen 2:24).
My heart breaks for Samantha. I hope that someday she will come to know the grace of Jesus Christ.
I hope she will come to realize that her acceptance in Him doesn’t depend on whether she reached an external standard of purity. I hope she will see that God loves truly her, not because of her ability to keep rules, but because of Christ.
Samantha’s story doesn’t make me fearful for my wedding night. But it does make me fearful for the young women who listen to her counsel. Sisters, there will be days when you don’t want to pursue holiness or we face difficulty in doing so (Rom 7:21-25). But God provides us a way out in temptation (1 Cor 10:13). Our culture tells us our sexuality is no one’s business, but Scripture teaches, we are not our own (1 Cor 6:19-20). We belong to Christ! He uses His church to keep us accountable to his calling (Gal. 6:1-5). Pursuing a life of purity is not about our own happiness. It’s about honoring the One who laid down His life to make us pure (Col 1:22). Sexual purity isn’t easy. But it is always worth it.