Do They Love You? (Sacred Sex Series Part VII) 

Morning Devotion (for the unmarried): Do they love you? What matters most in covenant is agape (God) love. 

Our culture praises fun, romance, sex, lust, and quick hookups. There is hyper focus on fantasy and eros love (sexual attraction/romantic love). 

There is little to no focus on agape love (unconditional, sacrificial, unselfish love). 

Agape love is the love Jesus demonstrates. He tells His followers the world would know them by this love. 

Some may say, “Agape belongs just between you and God or in church and not in marriage or friendship.” I strongly, strongly disagree. Why? Trials may hit your friendship or marriage. Eros (romantic love) or philia (brotherly love) or storage (family love) may jump ship or not hold up in testing and extreme trials. Why? Because when love hurts, when that person disappoints you, when they no longer can meet your needs, when the sparkle has fizzled, the flesh says, “Let’s ditch this zero and look for another fix.” 

I personally do not enjoy mistreatment, so there are some unrepentant people not a part of my circle. I still pray for them, would feed them if they were hungry, clothe them if naked, keep their confidences, and seek to do no harm. 

Only agape says, “Even in the worst of times, I still love you. I am praying for you. Even if it costs me greatly I am looking out for you. My love for you is unwavering, unyielding, stead fast, and will not be moved. In sickness, and in health. In good times, and in bad times. When you make my heart flutter and when you don’t. I will remain faithful in love for you.” This does not mean love fails to set boundaries (see paragraph above). Yet boundaries are for protection, not punishment or an excuse to withhold love. 

Agape love is covenant love. It will cost you. It is not based on feelings, it is a choice you make to show up and do right by someone even if they do not deserve it. It is the love that says, “Even if you have nothing to offer me or you loose it all. I am not going to abandon my covenant with you.” 

Agape love is what God demonstrated to Adam and Adam and Eve were supposed to demonstrate to each other. Agape is what Jesus tells us to demonstrate to the world, even our enemies, not just who we like.

So in navigating through the choices for a mate or a covenant friend, think, do they love you? Do they demonstrate the unselfish, sacrificial, unconditional love of God for you and others? Are they a servant or looking to be served? Are they in any way looking out for you, your best interests? Or are they looking for someone to bless them, care for them, be there for them? A deeply selfish person will hurt you. 

Lust vs. Love

Lust is selfish and can be mistaken for love. It is an intense feeling that wants to take from someone else for it’s own pleasure or personal gain. Lust will pursue to conquer. Lust will also abandon. Lust is never satisfied. 

Marriage goes not cure lust anymore than going to a bar cures alcoholism. Lust is a spirit and heart condition; Jesus can deliver anyone from lust. The natural condition for mankind is love, not lust. Lust came when sin came. Before lust there was blessing given by God for physical intimacy out of agape love. 

Love is looking for ways to give, add value, bless, empower, protect, and enhance. Love seeks to do things God’s way. Love is holy, pure, and eternal. 

Okay, you may be saying, “Love sounds hard. I just want to have fun!

Fun is great! I love to have fun. Yet just having fun does not make us covenant friends or marriage material. God and I have tons of fun; laughing parties, dancing, sharing dreams, life together. Yet we both know our love for the other is not dependent on having fun. There are times where He just had to hold me while I mourned. Times where I had to wait patiently on Him to finish what He started. Not always fun, yet we are in covenant. I love God even when walking with Him is challenging. He promises to never leave or forsake me. I know every day with me is not fun. Yet He stands in unwavering love. 

What about that spark, physical attraction? 

God is pro chemistry. Hormones were His idea. He was the Author of attraction, sex, and romance. Yep. God, not Hollywood. God’s version of romance leads to greater intimacy (knowing) in a safe environment. God seeks to protect hearts and bodies, not destroy them or use them. 

God created physical intimacy with boundaries. Those who live their lives based solely on what pleases the flesh will often find they are led by lust not love. What if your spouse can no longer meet your physical needs? Are you leaving? Cheating? Withholding love? Angry? What if that person loses their health, looks, or possessions? Lust says, “Go where your needs are going to be met.” Lust is selfish. Love is unselfish and faithful. 

In a world that says, “Do what feels good to you.” God offers something so much better, agape love. 

Does that potential mate or close, covenant friend love you? Really love you? Do they love anyone besides themselves, their family, and friends? What is their character and heart? 

If presented with the chance to be close friends or a spouse I am examining how the person loves. I have met many people in my lifetime who claimed to love me, I am their best friend or like family, and several men who said I was their choice for a wife, yet in the end they did not truly love me. Some loved the idea of me. Some loved the way I loved them or loved their families. Some loved or lusted after what was on the outside. Some evaluated how I could add value to their lives or business or church. Some just wanted to check their box, “Found me a wife or good friend.” Some were deeply selfish. And at the end of the day, I do not care how much money you have, or about titles or superficial things, how well do you love? 

Sweet friends, God loves you and wants you loved in return. One sided love is not a relationship, it’s charity. Charity (ministry) is great. Love without strings attached. Yet in covenant you will need someone willing to pour back the love you pour out. God set up relationships for mutual love and blessing. 

God bless you in your unmarried years and those who never wish to marry. Follow hard and fast after Jesus. God loves you and has incredible plans for your life, whether married or unmarried. He is your eternal covenant, stronger and better than any earthly covenant. He is the best Lover of your soul. You are so valuable to Him and SOooooooo deeply loved.

Allow God to Meet Your Needs (Sacred Sex Series Part V)

  
Good morning beautiful people. 

You are loved! 

Today I wanted to chat with you about needs. We, as humans, have needs. Those needs left unmet can lead to soul wounds, despair, discouragement, hurt, unhealthy relationships, or addictions. 

What are our basic needs. Well, other than food and water, we need: 

  • Affection
  • Affirmation
  • Encouragement
  • Family (does not have to be natural) 
  • Sense of Belonging 
  • Unconditional, unselfish, sacrificial (Agape) Love: we were created by love, to be loved, and to love.

God is the primary Source of these things. If we bypass Him to try to get those needs met by others, well it brings problems. God loves purely. There is no bias. 

God is stable, consistent, and will not love you today and withhold love tomorrow. God comes to give and not consume. God comes with a heart of pure unconditional, sacrificial, and lavish love. 

People, substances, and things were never created to replace our need for God. When they replace Him, unhealthy habits, and unhealthy relationships form. It also leads to great disappointment. 

In our culture we have people looking for love in all the wrong places, with all the wrong faces, in an attempt to fill a void only God can fill. 

So how do we deal? The world offers so many opportunities to get needs met in unhealthy ways. God offers healthy ways.

  1. Start with God. 
  2. Seek healthy community 
  3. Set boundaries for weaknesses

God tells us the following in His word. 

  • Mt 6:8…”your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.”
  • Ps 34:10…”…those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.”
  • Ps 24:1…”The earth is the Lord’s, and all it’s fullness,…”
  • Ps 50:10…”…every beast of the forest is Mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills.”
  • Gen 18:14…”Is anything too hard for the Lord?”
  • Mt 7:7…”Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”
  • Rom 8:32…”He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall he not with Him also freely give us all things?”

The love God has for us is pure, genuine, overflowing, and good. 

He is available 24/7 to provide love, encouragement, hope, joy, peace, and His goodness. He provides affirmation, healing, and affection. 

When we start with God we have a better idea of what genuine love is and what it is not. When we start with God, we leave full and have something to offer others. We enter relationships not out of great need, but to be a blessing. 

Community: 

We were designed to live and thrive in community. Community provides an outlet for family. God’s design was for everyone to have a family. Unfortunately our culture has models of brokeness. Some people are not loved by their natural families. 

God designed the Body of Christ to be a source of family for people. We are still working out the kinks of family in church, yet that was God’s design. 

Pray for God to place you in a family if you do not have one. He excels at divine connections. 

Family provides a safe place for some of those needs. A God given family is a blessing. 

Set Boundaries: 

Where do you turn when there is a need? To food, alcohol, the internet, a person? Knowing your triggers helps to prevent sin. If I know I am feeling down, where do I turn? God or people? 

I have found people are nice, but sometimes they make me feel worse. They offer scripture bandaids that often are not helpful. Or they have zero compassion or offer judgement. Or they blow me off because they are concerned about themselves. So, for the most part, I go to God. My boundary is set with “I will spend time with God, not seek help from people.” 

There are times I will solicite help from people, yet many learning bumps later I have seen and continue to see my best bet is God.

Your boundary may be different. It may be, “When I am hurting or in need, I turn to this person or thing.” You may need to set a boundary of, “I will not seek to connect with anyone before I connect with God.” 

You and I were designed for intimacy (knowing others and being known). We were created to be loved, affirmed, encouraged, and to have affection. Those needs are normal. The way we get those needs met is what leads us on a path of purity or unhealthy living. 

I bless you friends. You are prayed for and deeply loved. 

Love in Christ, 

Erin Lamb 

Hormones or Lust? (Sacred Sex Series Part IV) 

  
Image Credit: WordSwag, used with permission. 

Hello beautiful people. Today I wanted to unpack some truth on hormones to hopefully relieve some shame, provide insight, and offer tools for walking in purity. 

First things first. You are a human being who has hormones. These hormones do many things; regulate metabolism, body temperature, affect body shapes/sizes, regulate reproduction. 

Almost every human has been given the ability to reproduce after it’s own kind. Men have sperm. Women have eggs. They unit to create another human who shares their DNA. 

In the normal hormonal makeup of a human is the desire to mate and reproduce. No shame if you do not desire physical intimacy or children. My point is the desire for physical affection from the opposite sex and the desire to have children is God given. The human body has hormones that support these desires. 

The desire for physical affection is not evil. Things get out of hand when hormones partner with lust. What is lust? Here is my definition. 

Lust: 

  1. An unquencheable desire for what one does not have. 
  2. A desire to do whatever it takes to satisfy that desire. 
  3. A desire to take for selfish gain, self gratification. 

Lust is not from God. It is a result of the fall. Adam saw Eve naked and his first response was to speak life and prophesy over her. He was not seeking to take from her, nor was he singing, “Let’s get it on.” 

Yes, I have heard the song and hear the things men say about women. I am surrounded by men who sing “Let’s get it on,” like it is their theme song. I work with majority males. What they do not recognize is that they were created to love not lust. 

While men chant, “Men will be men. We just can not help ourselves,” God whispers back, “I created you in My image to agape love (unselfish, sacrificial, unconditional love).” Men were designed to unselfishly love (give), not take. 

Hormones (flesh) say, “I want to mate with someone, be physically intimate.

Lust says, “I desire to meet my own desires and I do not care how. I am here to be gratified and satisfied. People are objects to be used for my pleasure.” 

Lust is selfish. Lust wants to take for it’s own pleasure without regard for God, or others. Lust is never satisfied. It requires more and more while giving less and less. 

Love says, “I will walk in self control. I will seek to honor God and others. I will abort thoughts and images that are not holy. I am here to give, not take. It is not about feelings or hormones. It is about honor.” 

Love seeks holy connection in commitment/covenant. Love sees a person to be cherished, respected, honored…not an object to be used and discarded. 

So how does one walk in purity in a world where many things are set up to lure people into lust? 

Lust sells right? It sells because it becomes an addiction. People need more and more to feel good. The lust can be for sex, money, power, attention, affirmation, prestige. Lust always wants more! 

God has another plan, plan A. His plan involves agape love, receiving His love, knowing Him, and sharing His love with others. 

Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God,”~Matthew 5:8. 

Stepd for walking in purity: 

I. Assess Your Needs 

  1. The need may be for intimacy-to be known. 
  • This need is normal and there are healthy ways to get this need met without falling into the trap of lust. 
  • Godly friendships and friendship with God are great ways to meet this need. 
  • Go to God with your desire for intimacy. 
  • God is faithful to listen and provide great holy connections.

All we need is love, right?

  1. Is the need for love? God is love. Unfortunately God does not embrace us the way a human being can, yet His embrace of our spirit is far more powerful. 
  • Godly community can also be a place for our love to be given and for love to be received. The hugs, smiles, laughter, shared experiences can help to keep us connected. 
  • Seek God and be in healthy commmunity. 
  • If you ask, God is faithful to provide a tribe. 

II. Set Boundaries

Okay so boundary is sometimes an overused word in Christian culture. Yet boundaries are important. They protect both people. 

What is appropriate for your relationship? Well, what honors God? Would you mind it being broadcast on tv for your parents, pastor, friends (unmarried peeps)? If not, cease the activity. 

Physical intimacy was intended to lead somewhere…to more physical intimacy. It was not designed to be cut on and off. That’s why you read stories of people who started something that seemed so innocent that led to far, far more. 

The Bible says, “It is not prudent to awaken love before it’s time.” Why? Because your body will move towards what it was designed to do…don’t go playing with matches. You will get burned. 🔥🔥🔥

It is also very imperative to not treat a boyfriend or girlfriend like a spouse, emotionally, spiritually, or  physically. 

Do not give yourself away to someone who is not your spouse. 

Many affairs or trails to a bedroom started with emotional or spiritual connection. How much time is being spent alone with this person? Talking on the phone? Sharing dreams, praying, emotions, struggles? These activities build intimacy. 

How much is shared too soon or without committment? It can be a set up for later heartache. 

Stories:  

I have been discipling for 12 years and have seen quite a bit. 

There was Marcus (not his real name). He connected with lots of women on an emotional and spiritual level. He was the handsome, seemingly “nice” Christian guy. He knew how to pray and say all the right things. 

The issue was Marcus had zero desire to love or commit to any of those ladies. The ones with little to no boundaries were greatly harmed by him. They opened their hearts and souls to someone not committed to love them. Some gave their bodies to him. He moved on to the next target. 

Marcus stated he only told women what he thought they wanted to hear so he could take from them. He was a predator. He was selfish. 

Ladies and gents, set boundaries. Do not give yourself away. You are a priceless treasure. Your future or current spouse will thank you. Your soul will too. 

There was Lisa (not her name). Lisa had a handsome boyfriend. They spent lots of time talking, connecting, being together. She lived alone so they would have hang outs at her place, some were evening hang outs. These hang out led to other things. 

She believed he loved her and was only with her. She did not find out until later he had given her an STD (sexually transmitted disease). It is one she will have forever. Lisa did not set a boundary to protect her purity. Her boyfriend felt he was in love, yet love does not seek to take. He took not only her virginity, he left her with a disease. 

There was Hope and John (not their real names). They were both happily married until they met each other. Then they began chatting for hours, texting, working late together, eating lunch together alone, sharing their struggles. 

Over time the intimacy they built with each other emotionally led to a physical affair. They had no boundaries with each other. They both hurt their spouses and Hope damaged her witness for Jesus. John was not a believer.

There was Janet (not her real name) who became best friends with Eva. Their friendship lacked boundaries and they started acting like a married couple. Eva developed romantic feelings for Janet.Though Janet did not reciprocate those feelings, their lack of healthy boundaries created a perfect storm. 

III. Feed Your Soul Healthy Things 

I know we live in the age of Fifty Shades of Grey, it is your body-do what you want, overly sexual images/activities, etc…yet we are responsible for our soul care. What you feed grows, what you starve dies. Feed the soul what is healthy. 

Disclaimer: 

As for those courting or seriously dating, I am not stating you can not hug, hold hands, or share an appropriate kiss. I am not stating to never be alone together. Use wisdom. Alone at night in your apartment may not be wisdom for you. Set up situations where if you are tempted the next leap isn’t possible. God never sets anyone up to fall. 

You must talk over your personal boundaries with God and the person you are seeing. Are your actions loving? Are they helping the other person remain pure in action and in thought? Or is it lighting a fire you are not able to sustain because you are not married. 

My unsolicted suggestion is to set boundaries for all relationships. What is loving, pure, healthy? What will draw the other person closer to God? What will help them remain pure too? 

Part of relationships is drawing the other person closer to God, imitating Christ. This flows over into marriage too. Marriage does not cure lust any more than bars cure alcoholism. So may lust be  aborted and replaced with agape love. 

Papa God I pray blessings over everyone subscribed to this blog. Purify all hearts and souls. Lord may all believers be people who walk in agape love. Replace any lust with Your unfailing love. In Jesus mighty name, amen. 

Resource: 

Choosing God’s Best
This book focuses on courtship over dating. I do love the boundaries sections. If you are pro dating and not so much into the courting formalities, it still provides some wisdom. 

Bless you! 

Erin 

Choose Reality Over Fantasy (Sacred Sex Series Part III)

  
Image: WordSwag; used with permission. 

Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ,~2 Corinthians 10:5. 

Flee sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body,~1 Corinthians 6:18. 

God gave us a brain, an imagination, a will, and emotions. These things when purified are a gift. A holy imagination is a great place for God given creativity to be birthed. Our thoughts were meant to align with His so what is birthed out of our soul brings Him glory. Our thoughts are powerful. Our imagination powerful. 

Sin starts with a thought, a seed. “Do this. You deserve this. This will feel good. This will meet your needs.” 

The devil does not tell people, “Giving in to things outside God’s will leads to bondage, addiction, distraction, lust, patnership with the devil, or sin.” He never talks about consequences. He leads people into sin and then laughs at them. 

The serpent did not tell Eve her choice would bring death, sickness, pain, and destruction into the entire world for all of time. He led her to believe God was witholding something good. He does not tell the world today sex outside marriage covenant of a man and woman leads to bondage and opens the door wide open to the demonic. He does not tell people pornography kills love, intimacy, and leads to addiction/sexual dysfunction/demonization. It is fueled by lust and perversion (twisting of God’s truth about sex). He does not tell people sexual fantasies lead to unrealistic expectations that keep people unsatisfied and discontent with their current life. Sexual fantasies also open the door wide open to a spirit of lust. He does not tell anyone undressing someone with the eyes is reducing them to an object to be used, not a person to be loved. 

Live in reality not fantasy…

We live in a world that promotes virtual reality. As long as it’s an image on a screen or character in a book or movie it’s harmless. As long as someone is consenting, it’s okay. What you do with your body is okay. Well, sin always cost someone something. 

Most men who buy sex, even to the point of buying young girls and children (sex trafficking) started with a porn addiction. It started with a fantasy in the mind that developed into a stronghold of lust/perversion/pedophilia/whoredom. 

You may be saying, “It is not that serious. What I meditate on and fantasize about is my business. I am not hurting anyone.” Well our thoughts invite either God or the evil one to build in our soul. Heaven and hell are both looking for human agreement.   

When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death,~James 1:13-15. 

They say affairs begin first in the mind, with a thought. “This person can give you something your spouse can not.” It starts with a seed planted. The seed is then watered. Over time if not uprooted, the seed grows into a garden. Lust is fed over and over until it must be acted upon either through self gratification or with someone. 

I have ministered to several women devastated by their husband’s addiction to porn and a few who had spouses who were sleeping with someone else. Some who cheated with someone of the same sex. It all started with a thought, a thought that grew to a fantasy, and then a fantasy that developed into actions. Those actions destroyed marriages, families, children, reputations, witnesses for Christ, churches (in two cases), and so it does matter what we think, meditate on, and fantasize about in our free time. If the mind is filled with fantasies, when is there time for God, prayer, intercession, true love, meditation on His word? 

Keep the heart pure before and after marriage…

Despite popular teaching, marriage does not cure lust any more than going to a bar cures alcoholism. Lust is a heart, soul, and spiritual condition. It is something to be delivered from and the person delivered to purity and love. Love seeks to save the sacred spaces of itself for what fits into God’s will and plan. 

If your thoughts are lustful, if you are trapped in porn or with sexual fantasies. If you are addicted, there is hope! Jesus came to set the captives free. He came for total and not partial freedom. 

Step 1: Prayer/Renouncing/Repenting  

Lord Jesus, thank You that You paid for my sins on the cross. Thank You for the freedom that comes in You. I ask for Your forgiveness for all of my sins including (insert what it is). I ask for total cleansing of my soul from all sin. I apply the blood of Jesus over every wound on my soul from sin. Cleanse every place, every memory, uproot every stronghold. I renounce my agreement with anything and everything not of You.  Ask for Your power to break every single bondage, stronghold, hold on my life. Anything in my soul that’s not of You I command it to leave. Any parts of anyone retained in my emotions, imagination, or soul I release. I renounce the idols of pleasure, sex, self, comfort. Any spirits that are not the Holy Spirit I cancel your assignment and command you to leave and go to Jesus. I forbid you from returning. I ask for a flooding of every place held by darkness with Your love, light, and purity. In Jesus mighty name, amen. 

Step 2: Renew the mind. Praying the scriptures is a great way to start. The mind needs flooded with God’s truth. 

Prayer for Sexual Healing
Daily Prayer with Scriptures
Prayer for Freedom from Habitual Sins
Step 3: Fast and pray. 

Some strongholds require fasting. Fasting involves refraining from food or certain foods for a period of time and involves deeper connection with God through prayer. 

Step 4: Starve the source/kill it at the root.  

What is fed grows, what is starved dies. Media is aimed at fueling sexual thoughts and fantasy. Cut it off. Whatever tempts you, flee from it. I am not saying if an attractive person sits next to you run. I am saying the movies, books, magazines, computer sites, images, and activities that lead you into sin, get them away from you. Set up safeguards for yourself. If you have porn at home, get it out of your house. Get it off your computer. 

If you are married and another person is tempting you, refrain from alone time with them. Refrain from texts, meetings alone. Refrain from having heart to heart’s with them. Set firm boundaries. 

Step 5: Accountability. 

This one can be challenging because who can you trust? Some people will love you. Others may shame you, judge you, or tell everyone your shortcomings. Ask God for a mature, loving person who can and will walk with you. When tempted, you can ask them to pray. 

Step 6: Investigate soul needs. 

We were created for intimacy (to be known and loved). We were designed for affection, attention, encouragement, and affirmation. If those needs are not met in healthy ways, the body will cry out to be fed in unhealthy ways. Love is what the soul wants. The first stop is God. A man or woman’s physical needs for physical intimacy were intended to be met in the covenant (life long committment). If physical intimacy is desired, God designed one outlet (man/woman covenant). 

God can and will calm any person’s desires, drives. Ask Him. 

Step 7: Inner Healing/Deliverance

Dependings on the strength of the stronghold, it may require extra help, prayer ministry. I willl talk more about this in a future post. It is possible to be free and stay free. I have seen Jesus break strong bondages in people’s lives. What He does for one, He will do for another. 

I hope something in this post is a blessing. May each person live in reality, not fantasy. May each heart, mind be cleansed with holy, pure fire of God. May each person have the mind of Christ! 

Blessings, 

Erin 

Unashamed (Sacred Sex Series Part II) 

  
This photo from wordswag is of two ballerinas, male and female dancing. They are wearing white leotards/tights. Just clarifying so no one freaks out. 🙂 

Here is the original (beautiful right?): 

  In the continuation of this series I have been thinking about Genesis 2:25. It reads: 

Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.

We know the word naked means without clothing. They were vulnerable. There was nothing they felt they needed to hide or airbrush away. 

Adam and Eve had no insecurities. They did not have body issues or body shame. They did not have lust issues. They did not pick each other apart, “Where are your six pack abs? Maybe a few runs around the Garden might help you out!” 

They were free to be who God created them to be; loved, seen, secure, and known in the boundary of covenant. 

They knew no shame. Carrying shame is not our friend. Repeat with me, “Carrying shame is not my friend.” Awesome, we are on the same page. Carrying shame leads to pain.

What on earth is shame some may ask? Let’s talk about shame. 

Shame:

a painful feeling of humiliation or distress caused by the consciousness of wrong or foolish behavior.

synonyms:

humiliation, mortification, chagrin, ignominy, embarrassment, indignity, discomfort, guilt, remorse, contrition, compunction. 

Lets’s look at Genesis 3:6-13, when shame entered the equation. 

So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings.

And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.

Then the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?”

So he said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.

And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?”

Then the man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.”
And the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”

The aftermath of the first sin was as follows: 

  • Feel uncovered/vulnerable
  • Cover up yourself/your vulnerability 
  • Fear 
  • Hide from God 
  • Blame 

After the fall, Adam and Eve realized they had no clothes-they realized their vulnerability and sin. They decided they would fix the problem by covering up their vulnerability and then hide from God. They, for the first time, knew sin. 

Adam blamed Eve. Eve goes on to blame the serpent and well it just spirals downward. Oh, the dreaded curses of the Fall. 

Before you check out because Adam and Eve’s sins brought pain, death, turmoil, shame, and heartache into humanity know Jesus was already a part of God’s plan to redeem humanity. Praise pause. 

God knew before creating humanity  we would mess up. I will maybe touch on that in another post. He also knew Adam was hiding. Interesting! 

Sin leads to hiding. Sin, untouched by the forgiveness of God, leads to shame-unless our sense of right and wrong is perverted/seared/numbed. 

Women and shame: 

Sometimes the shame comes not from the sins we have committed, but from the sins committed against us. I have prayed for and peer counseled women who have been sexually abused, sexually harassed, or verbally abused. They grew to hate their bodies, their sexuality, or sex altogether. Some were used by men for sex. Some gave themselves away. Some struggled with their desires, thought life. Why? Sin leads to shame. 

Women especially are judged by their physical appearance and sex appeal. I have heard men state, “Women are only good for one thing.” There are too many stats on rape, sexual abuse, pornography, the sexist images of women, and the exploitation of women to talk about it here. 

Just know God created women to be loved. He says, “You are fearfully and wonderfully made.” God likes who He created and woman was not just created simply to meet a physicial need for man. God gave woman a brain, a heart, and she was created in the image of God to be loved by God and by man. Love is not about taking or self gratification. Love is about giving. Agape love is not selfish. 

Men and shame:

Sexual and physical abuse hurts men too. I have not counseled men, so I have less experience in this area. I do know men are judged by how “manly” they can be. I hear them talk about this “man card.” So there is intense pressure to be validated by other men and I have seen men shame or humiliate other men who where not “masculine” enough. If you add in sexual abuse, especially by a another man that can lead to deep rooted shame. There can also be fear of not being man enough. 

I have heard men say they felt shame for their high desires for physical intimacy. Some run like the wind from any pretty woman. Others have secret lives of images they view on a screen or an inner world that lacks purity (some women do too).

Some struggle with same sex attraction (both genders) and feel deep fear and shame. 

Some do not know the difference between lust and God given attraction to the opposite sex. 

God’s plan (love, intimacy, covenant): 

Sex was God’s idea. His intention was physical intimacy inside the boundaries of commited love between a man and woman. Why? So they could be vulnerable, protected, loved, known, cared for, and unashamed. 

God is all about love and connection. He is relational. He also established the first family through procreation. 

When someone loves  unconditionally, truly loves, you can let your defenses down and be vulnerable. You are free to be who you are. Just as in the Garden, Adam and Eve were vulnerable and without shame (fear, hiding, humiliation, embarrassment). 

Every human being was created for intimacy (to be known and loved). Our world focuses so much on the physical aspect of intimacy. Yet God sees beyond the physical. 

We were created to be loved, respected, known, secure, and cared for. To God intimacy is about connection and not just pleasure. God created physical intimacy to connect two souls, bodies, spirits. It was designed for more than procreation and pleasure. 

He said, “I will give man and woman a way to be loved and known on a deep level. Two become one.” This does not mean you morph into one person. It means the connection joins two people. 

Those in Christ are joined with Him. We become one with the Lord. This does not mean God becomes us or we become God. It does not mean we lose our identity either. It means we are connected through an eternal covenant of love through faith; heart to heart, spirit to Spirit. 

Shame seeks to pervert love and destroy intimacy. The cycle of shame is filled with hiding, fear, feeling bad, sin-then hiding, fear, feeling bad, more sin…you get the picture. We were not designed for shame. We were made for agape love. We were not created to try to measure up to some magazine or movie standard. We were not created to be abused or treated like a disposable object. We were not created to hide or pretend, or blame or seek to cover ourselves. We were created for relationship with God then others. 

Jesus is the only One who can pay for our sins. He is the covering. So, no matter whether we have sinned or been sinned against-we seek a Savior. He is Jesus. All failures, insecurities, abuse, misplaced appetites, affections, desires for affection, all of it can be laid at His feet. Jesus paid it all. He took our shame so we could live unashamed! 

Father God for any person who is struggling tonight with shame, I ask for a washing in Your love and power. If there are things which require repentance and greater freedom, please bring them to light. Align minds with Yours. Lord Your loving light heals anything in the darkness. Only Your Son can cover. Your perfect love casts out fear. No more hiding. May everything be laid before You. You love us so. In Jesus powerful name. Amen. 

Agape Love & Intimacy (Sacred Sex Series Part I) 

 

Image created with WordSwag. Used with permission.  
Sex (physical intimacy) was God’s idea. 

It started in a Garden…

The Garden of Eden was free of stress, strain, turmoil, offense, lust, sexual immorality, pain, shame, insecurity, regrets, adultery, all sin. 

God created a lavish, luscious space for humanity. He gave them one boundary (don’t eat from the tree of good and evil or you shall surely die) and provided everything they needed for abundant life. 

Adam had a relationship with God before He ever had a partner/wife. He walked with God. He talked with God. God gave Adam things to do. They had intimacy (knowing of each other). 

One of the purposes for physical intimacy was to deepen oneness, union between man and woman. 

God saw that Adam realized none of the animals looked like him. God created Eve (see Genesis 1). Eve was fashioned out of the rib of man. The first person she saw was God. She was fashioned to be a counterpart to Adam. They are both created in the image of God. They are both human. They are both equal in God’s eyes. Their body parts were designed to fit perfectly together and create life. 

Another purpose of physical intimacy is the creation of a life. Every person on this planet was born. 

If you’ve had any biology you know how babies are created. Men generate sperm. Women house eggs. Sperm+egg=baby. The DNA of the father connects with the DNA of the mother and you have a child. That child shares the DNA of each parent. A lineage is created. God gave human beings the awesome privilege of procreation. 

He created Adam and Eve. He then blessed them and told them, “Be fruitful, multiply! (Genesis 1:28).” Essentially God said create more humans. 

God created physical intimacy for agape love (selfless, sacrificial, pure, faithful, unconditional), unconditional acceptance, and to be known. 

When Adam was presented with His unclothed partner there was no lust or selfishness or sin in him. He admired her as a person. Adam said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man,”~Genesis 2:23. 

Adam prophesied over Eve. It does not say Adam lusted after Eve, sought to take from her. He makes no comment on her body. He was without sin, therefore operating out of love. Love seeks to give. Love sees a person, not an object of pleasure. 

Scripture goes on to say later Adam knew Eve. He was physically intimate with her. This knowing is more than connecting with her flesh.

Sex is more than physical intimacy. It is a connection of the body, soul, spirit. It is saying, “Whatever is in this person, I am inviting into me. We are becoming one spiritually, physically, and connecting soul to soul. We will bond together, imprinting on each other’s soul. This is a place to be unconditionally loved, served, blessed, and known.” 
I have heard people say sex does not connect them deeply to others. This may feel like truth on the conscious level, yet in my experience in the Word of God and ministering deep inner healing with people I have found sex connects people deeper than their mind will admit.  You find people still carrying imprinting on their minds from images of pornography, fantasy novels, scenes on tv, from experiences with past lovers, from their own self pleasure. You find men unable to commit because they are carrying around the imprinting of all the women they have taken from over the years. Lust never satifies. It works the same for women. You find people unsatisfied with their spouse because of their extracurricular sexual activities. 

Sex is like super glue, yet more powerful. It is intended to bond a natural born man and woman for life. When you pry them apart, there is residue (imprinting) from the other that goes with them. There is a tearing that occurs. There are things that have been shared in the spirit and soul that remain. 

Media does not talk about the soul and spirit connections. Media promotes doing whatever feels good. It’s just like eating food. This is very untrue. Sex is more than eating a burger. It’s sharing all of you  with someone. 

Short stories: 

There was Dorothea (not her real name) who began sleeping with her boyfriend who was heavily involved in the occult. Things begin to happen in her life that were paranormal. It tooks months to free her and bring peace back into her home. Mainly because of her dishonesty about physical intimacy with this young man. 

There was Ben (not his name) who was teased for being feminine. So he thought, “If I am gay I should find out what this is.” He went online and began watching gay porn. This lead him down a path of addiction, poor choices, and a lifestyle of immorality. He has struggled deeply with identity, immorality, love, and purity. 

There was Jeremy (not his name) who was clouded with lies that manhood was expressed by sexual activity. He slept with over 300 woman and has intense trouble committing to anyone or being faithful. He struggles with intimacy, love, identity, and loving others. Women are to be used, not loved. 

If you are practicing sex outside the covenant of marriage between a natural born man and woman you may be saying, “I am a good person. My partner is a good person. We are not hurting anyone. We are not like those stories shared.” Well, God provided boundaries for a reason. Living oustide His boundaries and guidelines is what got Adam and Eve into trouble. 

In deep inner healing sessions people are sometimes shocked at what is imprinted on their souls from sex, pornography, movies/media, etc…

God longs to protect who He loves, people. So He established a union and boundaries for physical intimacy that is rooted in committement, faithfulness, and agape love (unselfish, pure, sacrificial, unconditional love). 

Papa God thank You that every good and perfect gift comes from above from the Father of Lights, You! I ask for any person reading this to offer up their sexuality and ideas about sex to You. Any areas of compromise, I ask they would be surrendered to You. Purge each soul willing from imprinting of images, media influence, past unions. Wash it all in Your blood. Remove any residue. I bless each person with restoration and purity. In Jesus mighty name. Amen.

Love, 

Erin Lamb 

P.S At the end of this series I will go  through some soul healing/restoration tools! 

Sacred Sex Series Intro

  
This new series is about physical intimacy; sex. It is a spin off of the Relationship Series. 

Run away from sexual immorality [in any form, whether thought or behavior, whether visual or written]. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the one who is sexually immoral sins against his own body,~1 Corinthians 6:18 (Amplified). 

Our culture is super saturated with messages about sex that is leaving us multitudes of the sexually broken and confused. 

Why this series? What can I bring to the table? Well, I am trained in deep inner healing and caring for the wounded soul (mind, will, emotions) and spirit. 

In meeting with people and walking them through the healing process you get to see the aftermath of choosing a way that is outside God’s boundaries. I have seen what sexual sin does to the soul and spirit of a person. 

I’ve watched people I deeply love have their lives turned upside down because they chose their way over God’s. 

I’ve seen the blessings of doing things God’s way, even when people say you are crazy for pursuing purity. 

I’ve seen how God restores, heals, mends the sexually broken. There’s always hope in Jesus. 

If I can prevent one person from wounding their soul or the soul of another, it is worth writing this series. If I can walk one person into freedom, it is worth writing this series. I hope to give you tools to walk in purity, tools for mending the broken or wounded soul/spirit, and courage to stand when your flesh is crying out, “Cave in!” 

I hope to give you information from the word of God and His view on sex. Why on earth did God design us the way He did? 

Part of my ministry is focused on intimacy with God. I hope to dive into God’s orginal design for intimacy between human beings.

God is not timid, bashful, afraid, or ashamed of sex (it was His idea). He is also not out to shame us, harm us, or hurt us. God loves us. God loves what He created. God blesses sex between a natural born man and natural born woman in covenant (life time committed love/relationship). We will talk about covenants later. 

So let’s get started…

I grew up being told not to have sex before marriage. There was little explanation as to why I shouldn’t have sex outside marriage. Maybe people were unaware of the impact sex has on the soul and spirit of a person. 

I watched young boys be told, “Men will be men. We cannot expect purity out of them, but you girls better behave.” I am a logic driven person. So these statements made no sense. Who exactly were these boys going to be practicing being “men” on…someone’s daughter. 

Having sex, btw, does not make a man a man. Being a male is something God gives through the DNA. The chromosomes of men read XY, male. Yes there is growing from being a boy into a man, yet scripture never links manhood to sex. If it did, Jesus would not be considered a man. He did not have sex with anyone. We read of Godly manhood linked to being responsible, full of integrity, humble, dependent on God, compassionate, walking in selfless love, honoring and empowering women, laying your life down, purity, caring for the weak, honesty, etc…Jesus modeled perfect masculinity. 

I watched girls in my middle school, high school, and college be shamed for their choices to engage in sex, while boys were celebrated, “Atta boy! He’s man now.

Women were shamed for desiring physical intimacy and men were celebrated! It sent a message to women, “Desiring physical intimacy makes you dirty, unclean, unholy.” No wonder some Christian women report not enjoying intimacy with their husbands and shame over their desires or past. 

Culture tells men, “Take, take, take from women. Commitment makes you weak. Engage in whatever makes you feel good. She was created for your pleasure. It is all about you. You are the man.” Our culture promotes selfishness which is sin. Love is not selfish. 

I have listened to men around me over the years sexualize women (“women are good for one thing…ha ha, man grunt“), promote manhood as being promiscuous, and view sex as the most important thing in the world. 

I’ve been on the receiving end of sexual harassment, men commenting on my body parts, approaching me in ungodly ways based on their lust or passions. I have been bombarded by images of women idealized based on their bodies or measurements. 

I dress modestly, yet that does not prevent the occasional man from ogling me like a bacon sandwich or following me around to stare at me. When called out on their behavior, I have been told, “Men can not help themselves. We are visual.” So I am blamed for their lack of self control. I wear clothes that completely cover and it still does not help. 

Lust is a spirit and heart condition. It is not the natural wiring of man or woman. Adam did not lust after Eve. Eve did not lust after Adam. They knew love (we will talk about lust later). 

I’ve also seen Christian men run from women they found attractive. “I dont want to sin, run Forrest run!” This behavior has left some Christian women feeling deeply rejected. They are pursued by nonbelievers and avoided by men who claim to love Jesus. “Get away from me Jezebel! You temptress!!!” God told us to live out of love, not fear and suspicion. Every attractive woman is not out to seduce every man and vice versa. We use wisdom, not fear. Also natural sexual attraction is not lust. Lust seeks to take and devour for its own pleasures. 

I’ve been ridiculed for choosing God’s way or agreeing with Him about sex or purity. I have had guys bypass me because I refused sex outside marriage (yes, they claimed to be Christians). I have heard the statements, “Times have changed. That’s old fashioned.” 

God has not changed the boundaries He established because the consequences are the same. He is not double minded. Living outside His boundaries leads to brokeness. 

So, I hope this series gives you honest things to ponder. I hope it inspires you to investigate God’s original design. I hope you ask questions and see God’s viewpoint of sex. It was His idea. 

I hope your heart and mind grow to know God more. Placing God at the center of everything is a sure way to find blessings! I pray healing takes place. 

Until next time, here are some resources for you and I will close us in prayer. 

Moral Revolution Website: Moral Revolution

Moral Revolution Book: Moral Revolution Book

The Wait by DeVon Franklin: The Wait BookThe Wait (Amazon)

You can also find Moral Revolution and DeVon Franklin on Instgram. 

Papa God thank You for Your original design. Thank You for all of creation. You are beyond genius. I pray every person reading this series has an encounter with Your Holy Spirit. I ask all shame, guilt, and condemnation be laid before You. For those struggling with purity, I ask for increased awareness of Your love and sustaining power. 

Purity is more than refraining from sexual activity. It is the status of the heart. Any impure motives in our hearts, I ask they are cleansed. Any selfishness in our hearts, please cleanse. Any unholy images or memories, be cleansed by the power of Jesus. 

Help us to live with Your eyes and heart, viewing people the way You do. Help us to view physical intimacy the way You do. I speak healing and wholeness to each soul. I ask for a cleansing of the heart and mind, in Jesus powerful name. Amen. 

Love in Christ, 

Erin Lamb