This is a continuation of the previous post with the same title but (II)
Marriage involves a total commitment before God, your community, and your family. The formal ceremony makes that commitment public. And that should not be taken lightly. “I love you; let’s have sex”, is not commitment. But when you get married, you are assuming responsibility for what happens in your marriage – including what happens when you have sex.
The prohibition for the unmarried is not just to deny something pleasant but to protect something precious. For singles, sexual relations are not essential to full personhood and happiness.
A young man with sexual desire may want to ask how far he can go with his girlfriend without sleeping with her: “How far is too far?” That is a wrong question. You should start asking, “How close to God can I get her?” Until our hearts are transformed, it will be difficult to determine where to set the physical boundaries in a relationship. Where do you end up when you operate with the “how far is too far” mentality? More often than not you end up going right up to that boundary and inching it forward each time you visit it – from touching to kissing; kissing to smooching; smooching to necking…to sex that may not have been intended.
Purity is not simply a matter of staying on one side of a line that we’ve drawn. It is a battle involving our hearts, mind, and bodies. A guy may be looking for the opportunity to cross the line but may not have found it yet. So, that he has not crossed the line is not proof that he is pure. Whenever you consider doing something with a girl, consider how you want a guy to treat your future daughter or future bride and treat women accordingly. Often we get so involved in intense relationships that it is hard to sit back and really look into our hearts. We should strive to do this however.
So where does the line go? For starters, know that the line begins in your mind. As soon as you begin to lust after a man or woman, stop. The more you become sensual and physical in a relationship, the more the relationship revolves around that. Chastity is about showing respect for yourself knowing your self-worth.
As a man, imagine a beautiful young woman you hope to marry telling you she had never even kissed anyone because she wanted only her husband to know the touch of her lips. If you would be so honoured by her integrity and purity, then make the woman you will marry feel honoured in the same way.
One thing about chastity is that no one who practices it regrets it. A girl does not cry after a break up because her ex-boyfriend did not sleep with her. A guy is not scared to death because his girlfriend is not pregnant. When it comes to chastity, we regret what we have done not what we have saved. Chastity therefore is not only for God but also for the love of yourself.