I’m fresh from the Bible Belt where I was the featured speaker at a childcare provider appreciation day. Kingsport, TN is a really lovely place – and I even got to sit in Johnny Cash’s rocking chair at the Carter Family Fold. Here I am, “Flatfooting” and having a great time!
As you can probably guess, I pushed the comfort level of many of the wonderful teachers and childcare providers I was teaching. “Does she know she’s in the Bible Belt?” was one bit of feedback I received.
Um. YES, is the answer to that!
Religion has a huge impact on how we view sexuality. There is no way around it, actually. And when you grew up in a religion that spells sex “G-U-I-L-T’ it’s super hard to be positive about it when you’re talking to your kids.
How do you reconcile what you believe with what your religion taught or teaches? What if you had sex before marriage and you now believe that’s not okay? Is it okay to pick and choose what works for you and what doesn’t when it comes to the teachings of wherever you worship?
Being a non-believer, it’s easy for me to tell you to do what feels right to you. It seems to me that we have free will for a reason and the first rule of thumb, especially when it comes to sex, is “first do no harm.”
My guess is this is a universal struggle in some ways – you’re taught one thing, told you’re told your evil and bad if you go against the rules and then do it anyway. Risking a trip to hell and missing out on the Rapture, among other things.
I really don’t have any answers for you – this isn’t my bailiwick, for sure, but it is my colleague Amy Johnson’s. She’s got this religion and sexuality stuff down, which is why I’m having her as my guest on my next teleclass, this Thursday. Details here: Spirtuality + Sexuality
I’d love to know what you think the answer is! Or the solution or even the reason God allows this dilemma.