The moment I announced my relationship with David the questions started flooding my inbox. Specifically questions about our physical boundaries.
Will we hold hands? Do use a chaperone? Do we hug? Do we do stuff alone? What about being alone at night? In a house? Etc etc.
I totally get it. I would be asking the exact same questions.
In fact, I’ve asked other newly dating or courting couples those very same questions. I want to know what a healthy, God-honoring, Christ-centered relationship is supposed to look like. I want to know if there is a correct way to go about physical boundaries.
Although the Bible does not give us a black and white boundaries list for dating/courting (I wish it did though!!), it does give us a few pieces of wisdom to guide us along the way.
We know that sex outside of marriage is sin. We need to obey God by waiting to have sex until marriage.
“Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous” (Hebrews 13:4).
We also know that we should have *not even a hint* of sexual immorality among us.
“But among you, there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed because these are improper for God’s holy people” (Ephesians 5:3).
Lastly, we know that there is victory in an abundance of wise counselors.
Where there is no guidance the people fall, But in abundance of counselors, there is victory (Proverbs 11:14).
Those are things that we, as Christian women, can hold onto as we each strive to honor God in our romantic relationships. David and I are holding onto to those truths and seeking to use them as a compass to guide us towards purity.
Even so, there are still gray areas that many of us have questions about.
The question that I’ve been asked the most since announcing my relationship with David, has to do with kissing.
Will you kiss now that you have a boyfriend?
I realize that I’ve been very vocal in the past about my decision to save my first kiss for my wedding. You can read my original article, “Should Christian Girls Kiss Before Marriage?”
Interestingly enough, it seems that some think my change of circumstances (getting a bf) may mean a change of conviction for me. You wonder, Maybe Bethany will start kissing now that she actually has someone to kiss.
Totally valid thoughts and I am glad you all are asking me this question.
Let me just clarify my thoughts on kissing.
I think kissing is awesome (at least I’ve heard that it is). I can’t wait to kiss my future husband. Trust me, I’m excited about that day. I look forward to enjoying the wonderful aspects of physical intimacy and touch within marriage. God’s design for men and women is amazing and I’m excited about it.
For now, I’m not married.
I know that sex is not God’s best for me right now. I know that sexual immorality of any kind (even a hint) is not God’s best for me. I know that purity and holiness are God’s best for me. I know that physical intimacy is designed for marriage and I want to do my best to honor my future husband, honor God and my body (as a temple of the Holy Spirit) by waiting to enjoy that special gift until marriage. With that said, there are still gray areas.
Kissing happens to fall into that gray area.
Nowhere in the Bible does it say “Thou Shalt Not Kiss!” Because of the lack of specifics, we are left to seek biblical principles and wisdom along the relationship journey.
Each and every one of will have to come up with specific standards and convictions when it comes to the gray areas. You will have to seek wisdom, study God’s word, pray and discuss with your boyfriend/fiance what standards and boundaries you will put in place.
For David and I, we’ve had to (and continue to) pray and seek the Lord on what boundaries are most helpful for our relationship. If our goal is to honor God by walking in purity, we want to do whatever it takes to get there. Even if it’s hard.
Choosing not to kiss each other is just one boundary we’ve chosen to put in place.
The two of us have committed to saving each of our first kisses for marriage. Whether that ends up being to each other or to someone else. We want to save that for the future. We both agree that for us (remember this is our conviction in this gray area) kissing would not be helpful in keeping our heads clear and grounded as we seek God’s will for our future.
Soooo yes! I am still saving my first kiss for my wedding day.
David coming into my life has not changed that. Convictions are of little value if they change when life gets hard. We need to stand strong on our convictions even when our circumstances change. Even when emotions are high. Even when we REALLY want it. We must stand firm.
I would encourage you to take some time to think through physical boundaries in a relationship.
If the goal is to keep the marriage bed pure, have not even a hint of sexual immorality, and seek outside wisdom, how can you begin to do that now?
Purity doesn’t start when you get into a relationship, purity starts right now.
Begin reading, researching, and studying God’s heart and design for your sexuality. Begin building countercultural convictions that line up with God’s amazing design for physical intimacy within marriage.
To learn more about God’s beautiful design for purity, I hope you’ll join me on March 24th for our LIVE online event called, Guys and Romance: Navigating Your Love Life in a God Honoring Way.
In the meantime though, here are a few blogs/books I highly recommend checking out: