Sex and the Single Girl

This summer I attended a women's conference at my church. The topic? Sex. Yes, I’m single. So yes, I know it’s a little weird that I went to a conference talking about something only married women should be doing. Even though sex isn’t something I’ve personally experienced (and don’t plan to until I’m married), the conference was amazing. I wish you could have been there with me! The sessions were incredibly tasteful, biblically based, and super practical. The speaker, Dr. Juli Slattery (who has written a book called Sex and the Single Girl), was so gracious and spoke in a way that made this sometimes-scary topic easier to understand. Since we couldn’t attend the conference together, I wanted to share with you my five biggest takeaways. Single girls, listen up! This is not your average sex talk.

Why We Should Talk About Sex

Growing up, sex was something our parents never really talked about. It was also a topic that our church definitely didn’t talk about. Because the topic is often so hush-hush, it feels taboo—and something we should just figure out on our own. Out of curiosity, and often an honest desire to understand the topic of sex, we turn to friends, movies, music, magazines, and social media to figure it out. Sadly, those sources are often terrible places to find biblical truth. It’s time that we started talking about sex in a God-honoring and biblical way. God created sex. He designed it. He encourages sex within marriage. So why aren’t we preparing singles for marital intimacy in a way that is tasteful, appropriate, and God-honoring? Let’s stop whispering (and Googling!) and get talking. Here are my five takeaways from Dr. Slattery at the conference I attended. I hope they encourage you in your singleness, equip you to think biblically about sex, and prepare you for a thriving and passionate love life.

Takeaway #1: My understanding of love, marriage, and sex matters.

God is the Creator of love, marriage, and sex. Sex wasn’t an afterthought. It was a part of His best plan for us. Instead of waiting until marriage to think about these topics, let’s equip ourselves and prepare well for them right now! Let’s allow the Creator Himself to inform us of our worldview, not any other source.

Takeaway #2: What I do on this side of singleness matters!

During the conference there was an entire Q&A session. I was so saddened by all of the pain, hurt, and struggle that was apparent in many of the questions. Many of the married women had questions that obviously stemmed from bad sexual choices before marriage. The effects of those sinful choices were still impacting them long after they sinned. Working through the emotional and relational issues was obviously hard for them. The married women also had a lot of questions about God’s design for sex. These are women who are having sex on a regular basis and they don’t understand God’s design for it. As I listened, I could tell they they were confused, hurting, and broken. Single girl, we don’t have to make those same tragic mistakes! In the most humble and gracious way, I want better for our generation. My prayer is that we can learn from them and grow in our decisions and understanding. Let’s live our single years wisely and save sex for God’s timing. Let’s not toss it around like it’s no big deal. Let’s take our purity seriously and make decisions that will set us (and our future husbands) up for success.

Takeaway #3: There is an enemy who wants to destroy me (and you!).

Satan wants to get single people having sex, and he wants to keep married people from having sex. How do I know? Because Satan always wants us to settle for something (anything!) less than God’s best. He’s working to destroy us in each season of life. He hates God’s design. He hates the sacredness of sex between a husband and wife. He hates good marriages. He hates how marriage reflects Christ and the Church. He hates God, and he hates when we glorify Him.

Satan always wants us to settle for something (anything!) less than God’s best.

The Bible gives us this warning: “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8). We need to remember that we have an enemy who wants to destroy us. He hates purity, and he wants you to ditch it. But we can be women who are vigilant, on guard against lies—lies about sex, sexuality, our worth, our bodies, lies that do not line up with Scripture. Keep watch, be on guard, make sure your thoughts and decisions are in line with God’s Word.

Takeaway #4: I desperately need close relationships.

We are created to connect in deep ways. (That is especially true of women.) We are relational beings, made for meaningful relationships. Often times our desire to connect with a man in marriage leads us to depression and dissatisfaction in singleness. We want that closeness. We want that relationship. We want to feel loved. This desire, though God-given, can get warped when it motivates us to compromise on God’s plan for our sexuality and relationships. Sex is not love, but it can feel like it at times. Instead of pining after marriage and feeling awful until it happens, let’s take advantage of the relational opportunities we have. Look for godly women with whom you can have deep and meaningful relationships. Learn to share life with the women around you. Share deeply. Spend time together. Care for each other in a sisterly way. Serve each other in Christ-like love. Having a solid community and meaningful relationships is an incredible support system during the single years. (And during the married years!) It will help fill that desire for connectedness and closeness no matter what your relationship status is.

Takeaway #5: My relationship with God is a really big deal.

What is the foundation for all of life? Our relationship with God. A solid relationship with God and His Word gives us a solid foundation for the rest of life. Our marriage status isn’t the most important thing. Our relationship with God is. This will always be the foundation of your life. A weak relationship with God = a weak foundation. Strong relationship with God = a strong foundation.

Our marriage status isn’t the most important thing. Our relationship with God is.

We need to spend time in God’s Word. We need to pray. We need to study. We need to meditate on Scripture. We need to know our Savior rather than waste these years longing to be known by someone else. In Matthew 22:37, Jesus said this is the most important commandment: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” For ideas on how to grow in your relationship with God, check out these blog posts: How to Study Your Bible and Love it! 5 Tips to Help You Strengthen Your Bible Time

About the Author

Bethany Beal

Bethany Beal is the co-founder of GirlDefined Ministries and co-author of several books, including Girl Defined: God’s Radical Design for Beauty, Femininity and Identity. She is passionate about spreading the truth of biblical womanhood through writing, speaking, and mentoring women, and you can catch her unpacking exciting and controversial topics every week on her podcast, The Girl Defined Show. Bethany is married to her best friend and husband, David, and they have one son, Davey Jr.