Our modern culture encourages very little personal growth while it simultaneously drives us to “improve our look” with the urgency of a dog in heat. Lose weight! Grow hair, color hair (or eliminate hair)! Tan! Tuck! Tighten! Tease! And then obsess over what you’ll wear on that perfect body.
As one billboard in my town reads: “Better Legs. Better Life!”
Honestly?!?! That’s all it takes? Better legs? Who knew?
Why the elevation of physical health and appearance over personal health and wholeness?
It’s the natural result of the hypersexualization of our society. After all, if the main purpose of finding a mate is enjoying sex, than theoretically the most important qualities in that partner would be physical. But if the main purpose of finding a mate is not only sharing a bed, but actually sharing your entire life with someone, than the most important qualities you’d want in your partner would be character-related.
BUT HOLD UP JUST A SECOND THERE! At this juncture, I need to share a little secret with you: physical attraction doesn’t guarantee sexual enjoyment. Especially not in the long run. Mere physical attraction often works in the short run, because:
- They’re hot
- That gets you hot, and
- Enough said.
But judging from the duration (or lack thereof) of the typical sexual escapade between supermodels and superstars in Hollywood, how long does that kind of sex maintain its heat? And after a couple years of movie-scene sex with your spouse, with whom do you believe it would prove more likely to continue enjoying the marriage bed?
Type-H: Someone who still looks hot in their underwear, but is also a hot-headed, impossibly selfish person, whom you’re pretty sure is tired of you. And resentful.
Type-M: Someone you know so well and admire so deeply, you overlook their weight and wrinkles. And because of the relationship you’ve built together, they look past all your flaws too.
You really need to know the right answer to that question, because the wrong answer is a huge reason why almost every other marriage ends in divorce. (Not to mention the 1 out of 10 marriages impacted by infidelity.)
In truth, most people can’t even conceive of the kind of sexual relationship depicted by Type-M above, because we never see this kind of sex in the movies. It’s all youthful, impassioned and reckless.
So does “Type-M Sex” exists? YES! But you’re not going to experience it on a first date. Nor on your wedding night (not even if you maintain your sexual purity until then). You may not even enjoy this kind of sex on your 10th anniversary. “Type-M Sex” requires growing together spiritually, emotionally, and relationally over time.
So if you insist on setting your sexual dial to the “Hollywood Romance” setting, then the best you can hope for is a lifetime of transitory sexual relationships with partners who have “fine” written all over them. (And that’s the best case scenario.) However, I can tell you that after just 18 years of marriage, the sexual satisfaction of “Type-M Sex” is so much richer and more fulfilling than the intensity Julie and I once shared when our love was new, our bodies young and our hormones on overdrive.
In other words, our sexual relationship has improved as we’ve grown both as individuals and in relationship with each other, with no correlation to our level of grooming. You may have a hard time believing me, but I think you already know the media has been deceiving you, so give this idea a chance.
Your date should regard you as a person worth knowing and not a body worth having. Anyone can say you have “fine” written all over you, but you want to date someone who desires to discover what’s written on your heart.
There’s one last aspect of this parking ticket punch line that I want to address, but we’ll do that next weekend. Until then, ask God to dismantle the lies that lead you to groom your body for sexual/sensual/romantic attraction instead of grow your soul for spiritual/emotional/relational wholeness.
Date Night Advice (DNA) series: TOP10 Signs You’re on a Bad First Date
TOP10 Sign #10B: You’re date’s opening line is “… you got ‘fine’ written all over you!”
Click here to read the next post in the series.
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!