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Extreme Makeover:  Inside Edition
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Sex 180

Extreme Makeover: Inside Edition

I (Tim) remember a time when I was away from home, away from family, and away from friends. In other words, I could do what I wanted and no one would even know what happened. What would happen there would stay there. I was in a strange city on a trip, working at a convention for my just-out-of-college job.

One particular day I had a random conversation with someone who was working at a nearby booth. Something within me could tell that this person wasn’t just making polite conversation—they had an ulterior motive. I played dumb when an invitation was extended, but I knew that this person was looking for a hookup.

I was feeling lonely, so I played along. I had just been through a heartbreak—I was in love with someone, but she wasn’t in love with me. I had attended more weddings in a three-month span than one heart could endure. I felt like everyone around me was finding the love of their lives, and I, like always, was left all alone. I didn’t want to wait on God anymore. His timing wasn’t so great, and I was getting tired of waiting.

I was desperate. I really wanted this quick fix to my loneliness. I wanted to be wanted. I wanted to be desired. I wanted to escape the fact that there was no “other” in my life. I wanted to find the love of my life, and since it wasn’t happening, this seemed about as good as it would get. We met up later that night and I got what I wanted.

But every step of the way, with each new pick-up line, each new physical act, I knew that I was heading in the wrong direction. I knew that what I was doing was setting aside everything I believed. I knew that God didn’t approve, but I also knew that I wanted to be wanted.

And at one point, right before things went all the way, I started waking up. I started fighting my desires and started remembering who I really was. The inner struggle for my tainted purity came to a critical point and I said, “I can’t do this.” The hormones were going full blast. I had already gone much further than I ever should have. And it would have been really easy to just say, “I’ve already messed up. I may as well go ahead and just ask for forgiveness tomorrow,” or to think that I owed it to this person to finish what we both had started.

But there was this haunting voice—the Holy Spirit reminding me of who I really am—that I just couldn’t fully push away. I knew that if I kept going, some part of me would die there that night. And as much as I wanted to have all those needs and desires met that night, I knew hooking up was going to cost me so much more than I was going to gain.

So I left. Even though the other person was really mad and tried to convince me that it wasn’t that big of a deal, I knew in my heart it was. And I also knew that I had not only decided to take that path myself but had also led someone else down it with me.

That hookup had nothing to do with who I really was—God’s child. He created me, even called me, to enjoy sex within the boundaries he created. Anything outside that was ignoring not only my identity, but all of the good things he had for me. As much as I thought I could disconnect my faith from my sexuality, it wasn’t happening. It couldn’t. It’s inseparable.

I didn’t want to be alone anymore, but God knew that my loneliness was a small price to pay in light of the sacredness and seriousness of sex. He knew that while nothing can separate me from his love, my sin—putting myself and my needs first, not God’s—would pull me away from him. He knew that I would buy into the lie. And the guilt and shame would make me run further from him instead of to him.

If you get still enough and get honest enough with your own temptations or past experiences, you’ll realize that too. It’s what your heart’s been telling you. Maybe you just can’t hear it because our culture screams everything but that truth.

So now that you know the truth, now that you’ve seen what sex really is, what are you going to do with it? How is that going to affect how you live? God knows that left on our own, we would settle for so much less. He knows that most of us would try to numb ourselves to the truth by walking around in denial with a huge gaping hole where our faith and our lives just don’t connect. Not because we don’t want to live differently but because we’re scared, lazy, or just deceived. We don’t want to step up and live in a way that’s revolutionary.

But you can’t walk away from truth. God holds you to it. The Bible says, “Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does” (James 1:23–25).

Jesus said it like this: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10).

So are you ready to live this out? Are you ready to let the revolution continue? Then it’s time to let God’s truth invade your life and start transforming not only the way you think (which is a daily process—see Romans 12:2) but also the way you live. It’s time to connect the dots between your faith and your sexuality. It’s time to let this truth revolutionize not only who you are but also how others see you.

So let the revolution continue—in you.


Used by permission of Baker Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group, copyright © 2005. All rights to this material are reserved. Materials are not to be distributed to other web locations for retrieval, published in other media, or mirrored at other sites without written permission from Baker Publishing Group.

Chip Ingram & Tim Walker

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