It’s a word we don’t hear or use often in the 21st century. It’s a word that comes with a multitude of reactions. Some people are supportive, others are confused and sometimes they are even mad. It’s also a word that is not talked about as much as it should be in the church. Most churches teach abstinence or die! They drill home to be a virgin without considering the people who have already had sex. I’ve been on this journey for a while and while it has been hard it IS doable. It is not as hard as I thought it would be when I realized the reason I’m doing it and a plan to do it correctly. Before I give you my five tips to become and stay celibate, I want to talk about my definition of celibate.

Celibacy- The state of abstaining from marriage and/or sexual relations.”

Now, for me and the purpose of this Janae talk, know that I am not abstaining from marriage I’m believing God for a super tall, dark, and handsome young man to wisk me off my feet and marry me in the next couple of years. For future reference, my celibacy is abstaining from sexual relations of any kind with a partner, including oral, manual, & cyber sex. It is also abstaining from masterbation. Some of you are probably scared right now thinking that this is impossible and hard and I must have a boring life because there’s so much I cannot do. You couldn’t be more wrong. I have a great life filled with fun, laughter, dating, & romance. I like to think that I just have different boundaries than other people. Some people don’t like exotic foods or a particular type of music. I do not want to engage in sexual activity before I’m married. Surprisingly, celibacy is for everyone! I used to think it was only for the super religious or the people who were lame and boring but it’s not. If you’d like to know more about why I chose to become celibate or you are trying to make a decision for yourself click here to read my post about Purity.

For those of you who have already made your decision, let’s get started!

Tip #1: Check Your Heart
Be celibate because you want to be obedient to God’s Word
Unlike humans, God can always see your heart and therefore knows your true intentions

In Jeremiah 17:9-10, the Bible says our hearts are designed to be deceitful, to trick us, the only person who can know the heart is the Lord. So whenever we make a commitment of any kind, he looks at our heart to see the true intention. When you tithe, when you plan a diet, when you commit to an event, God looks at your heart and knows whether or not you are a cheerful giver, or if you’re serious about your diet plan. It’s not like he’s some creepy guy judging you if you’re wasting your time making a diet plan you have no intention on following. Instead, think of Him as a lab tech that gives you an X-Ray. The X-Ray is not meant to cure you or harm you, its sole purpose is to see what’s going on in the inside, to asses the damage. Then, just like the lab tech, God turns the scans so you can see the truth as well. Make sure before you start this journey that you are doing it as an act of sacrifice, servitude, & obedience to God not as a way to ‘trick’ him into giving you grace or blessings you don’t deserve. Grace is not a reward for our trickery, it is something He gives freely because He loves us.

Tip #2: Get Rid of Your Temptations
All the things with the sole purpose of use for/during sex

This was a tough one for me because I hate wasting money. If I paid for it I want to keep it until its used up all the way. I had to get rid of my sex toys. All of my adult toys, gadgets, and lingerie. Think of it this way, if I am committing to not have sex until I am married I won’t use them anyway. Keeping them only tempts you. Even if you ‘hide’ them from yourself you will still have access to them and on the days/night you are struggling (there will be plenty) you can easily go and get them. If they are no longer in your house, there’s an increased chance you won’t give in to your desires. Yes, it’s possible to stay celibate when you have temptations in your house, but this is already a hard thing to accomplish, so why make the journey even harder for yourself? But Janae, I spent a good amount of money on these nice panty sets and role-playing outfits. Well, if it’s about the money let me hand you the $300 you spent and put it in your bank account….still don’t want to part with them? Then it was never about the money you spent it was all about the quality of your heart. If you are unwilling to change the things, people and places that encourage your bad behavior then you are not serious about your intention to change.  #CheckYourHeart 

Tip #3: Get Accountable
“Don’t walk alone.” – The Bible
Get support. the more support the better.

One of the biggest lies the devil tries to tell us is that whatever we are doing that is positive or for God is weird and lonely. This couldn’t be further from the truth. The thing is, sometimes you have to actively find/seek it. If you are trying to be celibate, the best thing you can do is surround yourself with people who know some of your major triggers and will prevent you from doing them. Get rid of or limit the time you spend with friends who encourage you to drink because you know drinking makes you horny. hang around the friends who want to go to the fair, the movies, an open mic night, a paint and sip. Have a contact that you can call in the middle of the night that will talk you down from the ledge. Be honest with your inner circle and let them know when it gets hard to stay faithful to your journey. The Bible talks about how dangerous it is to be unequally yoked, this includes friendships. For support, try your youth group or small group at church, online group on social media, or your pastor/spiritual leader. There are groups on all social media platforms for both men and women individually and collectively. They can provide emotional support and suggest resources to help you in this journey.

Tip #4: Understand Your Triggers
What are habits you’ve formed that lead you to wrong decisions?
What do you allow yourself to hear/see that may cause you to want to have sex?

Ask yourself these questions and answer truthfully. Y’all know I love a good list so of course I suggest to make a physical list of things you do, places you go, and even people who influence or make you lustful. No one has to see the list but you. It’ll help keep your intentions pure and subconsciously help you deprogram yourself. Now, because we live in a world that emphasizes sex and uses sex to sell everything from electronics to hamburgers, some things are unavoidable. You cannot help if a commercial emphasizes sex. You can, however, turn the channel briefly when the two main characters of your favorite push each other into the wall lustfully before heading to bed. It sounds stupid, but it won’t change your viewing experience. You will not lose out on experiencing your favorite show by turning the channel for 10-15 seconds (TV can only show but so much). Record your favorite show so when the sex scene comes up you can fast forward. Change the music you listen to. At night, don’t play the slow 90s R&B jams at night when you’re alone. Play some upbeat pop music or listen to a podcast. The answer doesn’t always have to be turn on Christian music and open your Bible every time you feel lustful. In my opinion, that’s not realistic or helpful!

Tip #5: Redirect
Don’t be in denial with where you are at with your journey. some people will be further along than you and that is okay.
Don’t leave a gap, replace it.

The biggest mistake I have found is that people get rid of sex and masterbation without putting something else in its place. Before I became celibate, I was having sex for 8 years. It was a part of my weekly/daily routine. Sometimes the sex was with myself and other times it was with a partner. The first time I tried to be celibate, I ended up with a lot more free time on my hands which made me yearn for sex more. Take out your pen and paper again, I have somethings else I want you to write…yes, it’s a list. This list is a fun one. Make a list of all the things/activities you like to do. Mix the list with things that cost money and things that are free. Think of old talents you had that you want to regain like learning an instrument. Do you like arts and crafts or baking? Do you enjoy singing or going to the gym? Is there an old sport you used to play? These are the things you will use to replace your usual ‘sex’ time. Think of things you can do at night. Maybe you like Sudoku or playing video games. The only requirement is that all of these things are positive and fun for you. They can be group activities or solo missions. If you are a super organized person, create a schedule and fill in your down time with some of the things on your list. Include naps, volunteering and positive friends and time for your family.

This is how you create a world where you see sex but you don’t subcome to it. Instead you create a positive life filled with memories and fun times. Of course, if you are dating like me, include your partner in on your lists. Make sure they are willing to hold you accountable and uphold your standard. If they are not celibate, or not willing to be celibate, you may want to consider cooling a romantic relationship with them. Remember that while on this journey, God, will send tests your way to reveal to you what is already in your heart. The best thing you can do is prepared for these tests because there is 100% chance your celibacy will be tested. Pray daily and attach a scripture to your journey. If you can, get your partner to make their own list that you can combine to have date night ideas for the year.

Remember this journey is not for self-gratification, it is to glorify God and honor His request. In the time that I have spent in this journey, it has been hard but the mountains that God has moved for me because of my sacrifice, have blown my mind. I have a better relationship with Him, I am more sensitive to His will and his direction and best of all it makes the devil so mad that I’m successful! Good luck friends!