How Far is Too Far?


September 27, 2012 by A Girl Like Me

All week long I have been waking up every morning with a question.  What on earth do I write this week in regards to sex??  What haven’t we covered?  What is it that God wants me to say?  A few things came to mind but my head kept going back to a question that was asked a few weeks ago.  How far is too far in a dating relationship?

Ugh.  I am reluctantly writing this post on how to stay sexually pure while dating.  Why am I reluctant?  Because I was just so darn bad at it!  I’ll be honest, I am not the girl you want to model your dating life after.  I messed up A LOT.  So I come to you with lessons I have learned and regrets that I hope to keep you from.  I was not the girl who kept my kisses only for my husband, although I wish I was.  I am not the girl who only dated one guy and then married him, although I wish I was. and I am not the girl that met this amazing godly man and then courted him in groups of people.  However, I am the girl, who had feelings just like you, who was so full of passion and love and wanted to be close to someone who I cared so much about that I sacrificed my values.  I was the girl who dated more than one guy and gave pieces of my heart to each one.  I was the girl who made out with someone else’s ‘someday husband’ and didn’t really give it much thought.  I lived selfishly and in the moment, rather than guarded and wise.  I was foolish.  So to all those who are foolishly “in love” and to all those who want to be “in love” I bring you words of caution and words of lessons learned in hopes that you will not have the regrets I had.

Let me just tell you what I have come to find when it comes to sexual relations with a dating partner.  I have come to see that sex is a slippery slope.  A very steep slope I might add.  Our bodies were made to go all the way.  We were not made to stop my friends, and that’s probably why Paul so desperately tells us to flee sexual immorality.  (1 Cor. 6:18)   That literally is the only way to keep us from falling head first into sexual sin.  Run!  Coming from experience, it is practically impossible to try a little hugging, and then a little kissing and it remain there.  It always leads to more because that is how God intended it for marriage.  We try to step foot on the slope, and we think we are invincible to the dangers that lurk… but we will always fall.  So, looking back if you were to ask me how far is too far?  I would have stopped at holding hands.  I couldn’t handle any more than that… call it passion, call it love, call it lust… I was weak and I wish I would have listened to the small whispers of conviction when I had the chance to run.

In high school I was so wrapped up in my current boyfriend that I didn’t really give much thought to the scripture 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 which says- “” Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God?  You are not your own, for you were bought with a price.  So glorify God in your body.”  Maybe I would have thought about it more if I was actually reading the Bible on a consistent basis.  However, the Word of God took a back shelf whenever I was in a relationship.  I encourage you to stay in the Word daily if you decide to date.  It will strengthen your desire to glorify God in all you do.  I, however, did not glorify God with my body.  I gave my body away.  Still, here I am shaking my head wondering how on earth I am supposed to continue writing this.  Because I get it!   I totally remember dating.  I remember how it felt to really care about someone and feel like it was so right to be physical with that person. I remember how much I wanted to show that person my love through physical touch.   I remember what if felt like to see that person as my world and I would do anything for them.  I did know it was wrong but at the same time it didn’t feel so wrong.  I was acting out of love if you would call it that.  So as someone who made boundaries and usually broke them… I understand.  I understand how you feel and the longings you have and don’t blame you.  I don’t even judge you if you have broken the boundaries you made.  Heck, I don’t judge you if you didn’t even make any boundaries in the first place because you’re too lovesick to make them.  I’ve been there, and I get it.  BUT!  If you were to ask me if I regret any of it, my answer to you would be a big fat YES!  Why?  Because I lost pieces of me physically and emotionally to each one of those guys and I gave something away that wasn’t even mine to give away.  I also took something that wasn’t for me to take.  And when the relationships ended I was left with more pain than I was ever intended to feel.  I was left feeling a divorce rather than just watching a brother in Christ walk down a different path that God called him too.  I was left confused, hurt, and questioning who I even was.  I was left with looking into my husband’s tear filled eyes when I told him all that I had done.  I had forgotten that I was bought with a price and that I belonged to someone else.  I had forgotten that through the death of Jesus I was made holy.  ( Col. 1:21-22, 1 Cor. 3:17, 1 Peter 1:16)  I didn’t think about the fact that I belonged to a divine power and was considered sacred.   And forgot that I was set apart for a beautiful purpose.  Which leads me to my next point, the most beautiful point, which my friend Jen so perfectly put in a recent comment.  And so I will steal her words.  ;)

What if we changed our perspective from asking the question ‘How far is too far’ to the question’ How holy can I be?’  You see I made many physical boundaries in my dating relationships and I just kept breaking them.  And all I was left with was guilt.  But I wonder what would have happened if I turned my eyes from the lines that shouldn’t be crossed to the eyes of Jesus.  I wonder what would have happened if my goal wasn’t to just remain a virgin but my goal was to grow in holiness.  To just see how much I could get to know God and just how close I could see His face.  I wonder what would have happened if I realized that I was totally set apart for a purpose and I was considered sacred.  You know what I think would have happened?  I think I would have still failed at times… but I think I would have chosen Jesus over my boyfriend more times than I did… and would have experienced a little more holiness than guilt the next day.  I wish I would have experienced less kissing and more peace.  There were those very few times that I obeyed that still small voice that told me it was wrong.. and I felt more alive.  I felt holy.  There is not one kiss that I don’t regret before my husband.  I would take it all back and would have replaced those kisses and make out sessions with dancing, laughing, praying, worshiping, singing at the top of my lungs with a heart that knew who she was. That Kelly, all those years ago, was meant to live life fully and with a non-crippling joy rather than torn and anxious and filled with guilt. That Kelly was meant to be made holy and sacred and at peace and didn’t even know it.  Do you know it?

I know you were probably hoping for a list of Do’s and Don’ts.  I know you were probably wanting me to sit here and tell you all the guide lines on how to remain pure with your boyfriend.  I don’t have a list and a set of boundaries for you to follow, but what I do have to offer you is this- be who you were made to be.  You were made to be Holy and Sacred.  Don’t deceive yourself into thinking that you have the strength to step out onto the slope and not fall.  We were made to fall with the right person, in the right time, under the purest of covenants.  When it’s not the right person, you not only are harming yourself, but you are hurting your brother in Christ.  Learn from my past mistakes… It’s not worth it.  Don’t place yourself in any situation that will cause you to stumble.  Flee.. and then fly.

“Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” Eph. 5:14

18 thoughts on “How Far is Too Far?

  1. Liza Kittle says:

    Hi, Kelly,
    Another great post. I don’t know if I mentioned a book that my daughter just devoured in one day it had so much truth and hope in it. It’s called “Every Young Woman’s Battle”–it’s in a series but I forgot the author. (There is one for older women, but the young women’s is best for teens).Anyway , it helped strengthen her resolve biblically and personally. I’m forwarding this on the Julia…she loves your blog!!!
    Take care,

  2. Jeannie says:

    I found this encouraging. As a 22-year-old dating her first boyfriend, I have often come up to the point of “how far is too far?” My boyfriend and I have decided that we will give each other kisses, but only on the cheek. You are accurate in saying that it is near impossible to stop at your set boundaries! Fellow readers, I encourage you to be vigilant in your dating your life. As Kelly says, Christians are called to be holy. Focus on that, and do your best to set yourself up for success. We will still make mistakes because we are human, but having the focus on Jesus and living our lives and relationships for His glory will keep us on the track of purity and holiness.

  3. Jeannette says:

    Great Post!

  4. Andrea says:

    One great way to answer that question is this: if you knew the man you were going to marry and he was dating another girl and they are on the couch, just the two of them alone, how far is too far? Or if your brother or sister was dating, how far is to far?
    Thank you so much for being so honest Kelly!! I’m about to be 18 and I’ve never had a boyfriend. It’s so hard being Christian and living in a place where everyone is having sex and saying that it’s okay. This helps me to keep staying chaste. Thank you! :)

  5. Nessa says:

    What an awesome article. I too wish I saved my body and heart before I met my husband. The good news is both my husband and I were able to talk about our past sins with past girl/boy friends and gave each other the grace and forgiveness we needed from each other, when we were courting. It was refreshing to say the least when we sat down and poured our hearts to each other before the big day that would change our lives forever. And when that day came, it was so worth waiting for the moment when we gave our first promised kiss to each other at the alter. We learned from our past, and we began to live in God’s grace together for our relationship. God is good.

  6. Emily says:

    This is great. Exactly what I needed to hear. I love this new way of thinking “‘How far is too far’ to the question’ How holy can I be?’”. I have never thought about it this way. Thank you so much.

  7. Haley says:

    Wow.. That was great!! I’m in high school, and I’ve been trying to work on that stuff. I’m not gonna kiss anyone till my wedding day. I always listen to the song “Oh My Dear” almost everyday. I love it. Now I love it even more!

  8. karen says:

    Amen. I wish every girl could read this and believe that what you are saying is true. The mindset to be holy has to be the line that we don’t want to cross. It would make so many things in our lives much easier….and less likely to cause us to fall.

    • Charity says:

      Wow! God has spoken to me tremendously through this post. I’ve never had a boyfriend and I’ve never done any of those things, but I know that if I had had a boyfriend I would have done all kinds of things. I know this because I have wished and dreamt it. but now, thanks to you and Heather, I see what’s wrong with that and I thank God everyday for this blog and what He has revealed to me through you and Heather. These last posts in September have been the most eye-opening for me and have given me a much more firm and true understanding about sex. Thank you! And may God be with you and bless you!

  9. Emily S. says:

    I LOVE the idea of having the mindset of “how holy can I be” rather than “how far is too far”. I think it can actually apply to other areas of life too, in addition to dating relationships. Sooo great! Thank you so much for this post!

  10. Lori says:

    Dang….the “how holy can I be” mindset just kicked me between the eyes. Totally needed that today! Thank you, Kelly!!!!

  11. Kari says:

    Wow I’m not alone cuz I’ve never had a boyfriend either and I’m 20 years thanks Kelly that helped me for when I do have one

  12. Susan says:

    Thanks for your thoughts and a new perspective – It’s a question I far too often asked in High School and I see high school girls asking still.

  13. Noel says:

    Thank you, thank you so much for writing this. For being honest even though it was hard for you. I needed to hear this right now even more then I knew, God knew though. I just started dating my boyfriend again, and we’ve already gone way to far, he isn’t as strong as I am in his relationship with Christ. I don’t know what I’m going to do, but I know God is trying to tell me something that I might not like, I already love my boyfriend Andrew so much. But I agree with everything you have said above and know that I want to be pure and holy so desperately. I want so much for our relationship and I am not even sure if he knows God well enough to want the same things.

  14. Anonymous says:

    So this is amazing, and it really intrigued me because it has been a topic that has been up for discussion with a friend of mine for a while. She continues to ask me “why is it such a big deal if I get a little more physical outside of marriage?” I’ve directed her to this blog but something hasn’t just hit home for her yet. She would say she’s a believer and continues to talk about God with me, but I feel as if something is still missing in her heart. It pains me so much to see such a close friend steer down the wrong path, and I know there is only so much that I could do. I in no way want to force her to believe this, but it’s been so hard for her to understand the pain it brings. I brought up the idea about telling her future husband about the things she has done, and she said “well I’m already going to have to tell him what I’ve already done, so why does it matter if I keep doing it.” I’ve officially hit a wall and don’t know if anything but prayer will help her see the dangers of sexual impurity. Any ideas or suggestions on what to do?

  15. greenradiance says:

    Reblogged this on Musings.

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