From Ally: Today I’m featuring a guest post from Tyler Braun, a friend and fellow-blogger who just released a brand new book called Holiness Matters. If you haven’t had a chance to check out him or his book, you can visit his website HERE.
We’ve all heard the famous sales pitch from Chris Harrison, on the television show The Bachelor and The Bachelorette:
“Should you choose to forgo your individual rooms, please use this key to stay as a couple in the fantasy suite.”
In other words, Chris basically says, “now is the culturally acceptable time to start having sex.” It is an ingenious marketing move by the show’s producers because it creates a cliffhanger moment of whether someone will say “NO!” (to my knowledge, no one ever has, though it should be said I think Emily made history in the most recent season by saying goodnight to all 3 men before the evening was over).
I dream of the day when a Bachelor prospect says no to the invitation knowing they are likely enjoying their last moments on the show.
In a recent season I watched (yes I am a dude and I am admitting it) a show contestant wax eloquently about being a “person of faith” and wanting to “stand up for the values” they care about. Only a few episodes later they were presented with “the card” and they obliged to a night with The Bachelor in the fantasy suite.
I cringed as I watched them share intimate moments on camera inside the “fantasy suite.”
In exchange for an emotionally-driven romantic television drama, this woman gave up her value of purity. CLICK HERE to tweet that and enter yourself to win a copy of Tyler Braun’s book.
She had spoken so highly of a few weeks prior.
What she had given up far outweighed what she gained through the process.
The competition between the naked person in front of us and the values we supposedly uphold has been a losing battle.
When a relationship’s success is dependent upon stretching the physical boundaries it is destined to fail.
All this drama surrounding the fantasy suite card, and supposed people of faith taking the dive anyway, has me wondering what sort of values we reflect in our relationships.
Does our faith end while we’re exploring the dating scene?
Does being a Christ follower effect how we engage physically with the opposite sex?
At some point we have to acknowledge that being people of faith means our beliefs must affect the decisions we make.
Without values for faith to flow into, faith becomes a private set of beliefs that make no difference in the way we live.
This is not the kind of faith Jesus called us to.
Thinking back on my relationships before marrying my wife, and the relationships many of my friends have been in, purity has rarely been a value pursued in them.
Paul explains that we should, “Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body” (1st Cor. 6:18, NLT). Having failed at this in my own life I can speak toward the struggle life becomes without having values that ground faith.
I believe we have much to learn from the The Bachelor’s fantasy suite. Pursuing after a sex-driven relationship will always end in failure. Pursuing after a God who provides us with our needs, will lead to a plentiful life.
In valuing the purity God has given us we’re free to engage in life and relationships the way He designed. Pursuing the chase of the moment, as the starting point and support beam for a relationship, always ends in pain and struggle when the next base no longer satisfies.
The longing gaze of your eyes always changes the affections of your heart.
“Love does not consist in gazing at each other, but in looking together in the same direction,” says Antoine de Saint-Exupery.
Purity in a fantasy suite world is found, not in staring at someone of the opposite sex, but in pursuing God in unison.
The question is, who have you focused your affections on?
[Contest to win Tyler Braun's book Why Holiness Matters, you must tweet the above quote by Friday 8/10/12 at 12pm EDT. You may only enter one time, and must be a US resident to win.]