Does Sexual Identity Really Matter?
Who knew how much insight you could mine out of the TOP10 Signs You’re on a Bad First Date? This weekend, we begin with the same questions which concluded last week’s Date Night Advice: Why does sexual identity matter so much in our modern culture? What does this preoccupation with our sexual identity say about us?
In short, it clearly indicates that one of the most important aspects about us – indeed the characteristic which defines our very identity – is our sexuality. Is there really any other explanation as to why sexual orientation is spoken of with the frequency of the weather and the passion of religious conviction? (If there is, please fill me in.)
Is that what you think? Whether you “identify” yourself as gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, transsexual, straight or asexual, do you believe that is essentially who you are? Whether you believe it genetic or chosen, do you really want your sexual proclivity to define you? Is it who you want to be known as first and foremost; the part of you from which you derive the most pride, import and purpose?
I hope not, because you are so much more than your sexuality! So much more, in fact, that to wear your sexual identity on your sleeve (or to continuously contemplate the same of others) completely undermines our value as human beings.
Do you understand that? You’re sexuality is not your identity! We’ve been sold a lie! And it didn’t begin with gay pride parades either. It began with the heterosexual male who thought getting the girl in bed made him a man. It began with the straight female who thought she could give her sexuality in exchange for the love she so desperately desired.
Having sex doesn’t make you a man. It makes you a mammal. Being sexually desired doesn’t mean you’re special it merely means you’re – well – sexual. If you don’t understand this then you will spend your entire life looking for validation through sexual experience which cannot be found there.
And that journey will likely lead you into the arms of one “lover” after another. It may have already led you down dark paths of sexual deviancy, perhaps some you were forced to walk. (Please know my heart aches for you.) Or maybe you’ll manage to make it to the marriage bed a virgin. (I sincerely hope you do, but even then you may not find what you were looking for. I know I didn’t, but that turned out to be OK and that’s part of my point.)
Do you even know what you’re looking for? Do you know what’s driving your sex drive? If you thought it was merely animal instinct or the pursuit of pleasure you haven’t thought enough about it. If your sex drive was so simple you wouldn’t be driven by it so relentlessly. And you certainly wouldn’t feel compelled to orient your life around your sexuality.
But what does the Bible say about your identity? Something truly wonderful! You are a child of God; the handiwork of a creator who knew you before you were born. Even better, you weren’t merely made out of God’s marvelous imagination. You were made in His very image!
So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. – Gen 1:27
You’ll notice two genders, but there’s no sexual identity mentioned here, because unlike the fertility gods of the cavemen, or the philandering gods of the Greeks or the multi-breasted gods of Eastern religions, the God of the Bible doesn’t have gonads. Scripture certainly refers to God in the masculine sense, but it also reveals that it required two completely unique versions of humanity to capture the fullness of His image – His identity.
So if we’re made in God’s image and His image isn’t sexual, what are we? That’s the best part! And understanding it may set you on the road to freedom from the slavery of sexual identity; free to be who you were really made to be! We’ll discuss that in next weekend’s Date Night Advice.
DNA: It’s What’s For Dating
It’s NOT for couples, but for any wise individual who thinks they might want to get married sometime before they die. And would like to learn how to better build healthy relationships in the meantime.
Check out all three study guides in our store. You can walk through them on your own, but it’s more fun with friends (that and it kinda makes sense to grow in relational success in actual relationships with others), so consider putting together an FMU LoveEd small group study.
Even better? And ask a rock star married couple you respect to lead it!