[tweetthis]He gives me life! @theharvestmag http://theharvestmagazine.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=1482&action=edit[/tweetthis]
The Harvest Magazine Contributor
My first time was nothing like I thought it would be. I didn’t plan for it; it happened quite unexpectedly one uneventful and unremarkable Saturday afternoon. As I reflect on the experience now, I can see that there were a series of events leading up to it; I just had not noticed or been fully aware of them.
I don’t know how I missed it…
You know what it’s like when you’re preparing to be intimate with someone. It’s very involved, at least it is (or was) for me. Typically–before this particular experience–, I made sure that I was well-groomed, had my hair together, had my natural-looking make-up together, smelled good, and wore a figure-flattering ensemble on top of lingerie in an alluring color. The entire lead-up to “it” was all about making myself appealing, desirable, irresistible. My confidence level soared the more a man found me desirable. That’s the way things normally went, but there was no way I could have prepared myself for this, for him or for the experience.
This was different. Very different.
I didn’t get all dolled up, but I did get naked. Even though I got naked, there was no seduction, not on my part. If anything, He seduced me. I was seduced but it was nothing like the seductions, or assaults, of my past encounters. This seduction was peculiar. Here I was completely naked, stripped of make up, perfume, sexy attire, and I showed “my ugly.” “My ugly” is a package of all of the things, nasty things, we try to hide from other people. My package was oversized and very heavy. It contained unforgiveness, unGodly relationships and soul ties, abandonment, rejection, people-pleasing, finding comfort in sex instead of God’s love, promiscuousness, anger, and hatred. I hated others and hated myself even more.
So, what made this encounter so strange was that He saw all of “my ugly,” every bit of it, and he still wanted me as nasty and disgusting as I was.
I had become so accustomed to wearing a mask, that I was effectively out of my element.
I remember the time when I was riding home from the skating rink with a fellow high school classmate. Going to the rink was a popular and safe activity for the teens in our small, rural town, and I loved to skate. Loved it. On the way home, he pulled the car over, and began to sexually assault me. I’m not sure why he stopped short of raping me, but I was thankful. When I didn’t cooperate, he got mad and never talked to me again.
I remember the time I had sex just to get home. My car wasn’t working, and I asked my co-worker to take me home. On the way, he said he had to stop at his place to pick up something for his second job, which is where he was headed once he dropped me off. He drove to his place and told me he’d be back “in a minute.” Several minutes passed, and when he finally came out and said, “Come in for one sec. I wanna show you something.” I followed him in to his place, and when he closed the door, he calmly stated that we were not leaving until we had sex…
There are countless other times like these in my big, oversized box of ugly. Times when I felt like all I was good for was allowing some random man to have his way with my body, like that’s all any man would ever want from me, like sex was the only thing I had to offer.
Sex was my escape, my confidence, my validation, my approval, my pain and my prison all at once. It didn’t make me happy. It drained me and made me feel dirty and worthless. And I kept at it. Even when I contracted diseases, I kept at it.
I never worked a corner, but I brought the corner, and the traffic to my home.
I was not sexually abused. I was not raped. I was not neglected. I had an enjoyable girlhood. I don’t know why I used sex to fill the holes in my heart. I just know that every time I did, it felt like I was pouring isopropyl alcohol over an open wound. It hurt badly, and the sting of the pain reverberated in my soul. Every man took a piece of me, and dimmed my light. Why sex? Why my body?
[su_box title=”Hooker in My House” style=”glass” box_color=”#11661d” title_color=”#c9fbe2″ radius=”4″]I was a mistress. I was a one-night stand. I was a friend with the benefit of my body (There was certainly no benefit in it for me). I had sex with my physical and emotional abusers. I had sex with my high school sweetheart who professed his love for me, and then married someone else a few months later. I had sex with a professor. I had sex with my boss. I had sex with co-workers. I had sex with men who lied about their identity and marital status. I had sex with my self.[/su_box]
The more sex I had, the uglier my ugly got, the darker my soul grew, and the more my heart broke.
That Saturday was my first time being my authentic self. It was my first time being completely naked and not feeling ashamed or worthless or like an off-road hooker. It was the first time someone courted me, and poured out pure love on me without expectation of me giving him anything in return, or giving him anything before he gave me something. He saw and smelled ALL of my ugly, and he seemed to love me and want me even more. We both cried, and danced with each other. We sang to each other. He spoke to me gently, in whispers, and held me in his arms. I had never experienced intimacy like this— I had never experienced intimacy at all. He adored me, I felt it. I could feel His love, and that He genuinely wanted my well-being. He didn’t give a care about my hair or what I was wearing. He simply wanted to pour love on me, and I wanted to do the same to Him.
Our time together was In.Credi.Ble. I was overwhelmed to stillness and speechlessness in His presence; I could not move or speak. No one had ever made me feel that way…it was easy, and gentle and sweet, and powerful. I fell deeply in love that afternoon—with myself, and with Him.
My first time bearing myself in utter nakedness to the Lord was life-giving, life-affirming and life-saving. I could have been dead by now. Physically dead. And even though I was saved, I was dead on the inside. He brought me back to life that day. His love and mercy began to heal my heart, mind and soul; His love and mercy delivered me.
As I dirty as I was, He didn’t care, and He loved me and kissed me like I was pure. He saw something more; He saw greatness in me. He saw His greatness in me. And His perfect, selfless love did make me pure — and it made me love myself.
He did a lot of work in me during that encounter, but the work is not finished. I keep meeting Him, and dancing with Him. We pour love on each other every time we meet. I don’t have to dress up. I don’t have to wear a mask. I don’t have to pretend. I don’t have to do anything but love Him, and trust Him.
That was my first time. My first time was the beginning of a new life.
He. Gives. Me. Life.
Maedee Ford is a Southerner. She loves the Lord, and shares her pain through writing to help set others free.