I’ve just finished spending three days with my friend, Alexis Ware, working on a book to use with her program, Lessons for Life. Her organization is devoted, among other things, to teaching abstinence to young people. STD’s, unplanned pregnancies and fragmented emotions are part of the fallout she sees as she counsels teens and even pre-teens who have become sexually active. Her key phrase is, “You can choose your way, but you can’t choose your consequences.”
A talented basketball player, Alexis played for a Division One team in college then went on to play exhibition games for the next five years. Her background as an athlete and her magnetic personality are part of the platform she uses to gain access to the hearts and minds of the youth she is influencing. She speaks in both public and private schools, is scheduled at conferences, churches and retreats and has been invited to share her message in both Haiti and Africa. You can read more about her organization or contact her for speaking here: lessonsforlifewithalexisware.
“You can choose your way, but you can’t choose your consequences.”
I so appreciate someone having the courage and commitment to be a strong voice that cuts against the cultural current to promote purity and protection of bodies and emotions. I highly recommend her as a speaker who will grab the attention of kids who are slipping into the quicksand of sexual immorality.
We spent the weekend discussing how to help single young people make the choice for sexual purity before marriage. But as a married woman, I am very aware that the choice to remain sexually pure goes beyond the “I Do’s”. Being faithful within a marriage involves not only our bodies, but our minds and emotions as well. Emotional affairs can be just as destructive and damaging to a relationship as physical ones. From the first flirtation or inappropriate touch to the full blown affair, one choice leads to another but it is all based on CHOICES.
I had lunch last week with a beautiful newlywed couple. So fresh and newly bonded, they could barely resist touching and kissing each other during our meal together. I loved watching them and sharing their happiness but at the same time felt prompted to tell them I hoped they would always CHOOSE each other even when they weren’t FEELING the love they felt that day.
Life is all about choices. We choose to eat certain foods and are constantly trying to shed that extra 10 or 15 pounds. We choose to spend more than we make and are constantly struggling to stay within our budget. Likewise we choose to invest time and energy into our relationships and are rewarded with loving friends and family who provide us support. And because we choose to invest in our health with regular exercise, we have bodies that are strong and supple and can easily perform our daily tasks.
The choice to remain sexually pure goes beyond the “I Do’s”.
Choosing to love a spouse when you have been disappointed or hurt is not easy. Choosing to love when you are angry is perhaps even harder. Choosing purity, whether married or unmarried, is a choice that saves you from heartache, shame, disappointment and grief. It is also a choice that prevents the separation from God which leaves our spirits feeling lost and alone. I love the passage found in Matthew 5:8, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” I don’t think that just means that we will see him in eternity when this life is over. I believe it means we can see (know and experience) Him now. Having a rich and intimate spiritual connection to God Himself is enough of a reward for choosing purity. Having a conscience that is clear and integrity that is intact is a blessed way to live.
I leave you with a final scripture which will become my prayer for you and me as well. Psalm 51:6 “Behold, You desire truth in the innermost being. And in the hidden part You will make me know wisdom.” I pray that we acknowledge and acquire TRUTH and that in the deepest, most hidden part of ourselves we find embedded a WISDOM for life that is beyond our own capabilities. A wisdom that helps us choose wisely and choose well.