Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sex and Worship

Here is a response I posted to Richard Dahlstrom's blog on Sexual Freedom I've expressed the sentiments on freedom before on this blog, but the idea of the way I pervert sex and the way I pervert worship overlap considerably.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the ways we (I) abuse sex and these ways are often the ways we (I) abuse worship.

I have struggled with Sex addiction and pornography. Of course this greatly affects my sex life once married. After salvation and much healing the sex with my wife is vastly different.

I’ve noticed really good sex is about giving. It feels the more I am concerned with and in tune with my wife's needs and desires, the more she reciprocates. My intention is not the reciprocation, but the reciprocation drives me to focus even more intently on her. This has become sex for us. Before, as an addict, sex was about me and my needs. If something changed from what I expected it could derail the whole experience for me. It was all about me. Part of redeeming sex was being forgiven by my wife. She accepts me and loves me knowing full well who I am and what I have done. I can now give and accept love during sex. Before I would always wonder, “would she really be here if she knew.”

In worship I have noticed how easy it is to turn the focus on me. “How do I look with hands up (or down)”, “Did I stand at the table long enough after taking communion”… It goes on and on. It sounds ridiculous to vocalize these thoughts, but they are there. I can make the worship of God about me really quickly. Times when I am most aware of grace, I feel I can pour my heart out. Whether I am singing, or speaking, or giving… I can do these things with great joy. Jesus knows me inside and out, and He still wants me to be there with him. By giving myself up in worship, by focusing on his glory I feel like he gives me joy and peace. That’s not my motivation going in, but it increases my ability to give myself over to him.

I recognize it’s a metaphor and has its limitations. I love the words you chose to describe freedom. I have been frustrated many a July 4th to hear freedom described as “I can do what ever I want”. Being an addict whom Christ set free, I feel very grateful that God has empowered me to say “no” to things that once owned me.

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