19,20 "Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies."
1 Corinthians 6:19,20 (NIV)
Athlete, you are attuned to your body. You probably don’t think of it, but you have more body awareness than most people.
I was recently talking to the mother of a 13-year-old. The mother was reading about how to raise a new teenager and came across this: “This is a crucial age for sexual exploration. You need to encourage them to explore. You cannot stop them, nor should you, from being sexually active.” Sadly, many people hold that belief.
Thank God there is an alternative view.
Here is the far better truth: God made you, and your body belongs to God who bought you at a high price.
It’s true, if there is no God or if God does not love you, there is no basis for self-restraint. You can do whatever you want whenever you want with whomever you want, because ultimately nothing matters.
But you have a solid basis for practicing self-control over your thoughts and body. You also have a God who knows, loves and accepts you.
Athlete, you of all people know what it is like to practice self-control over your body. You tell your body what to do and it does it.
You jump, and tell your arm to do one thing and your leg to do another while you are in midair. Meanwhile you perceive and predict the movements of those around you in a split second. That is amazing!
In our hypersexual culture we prize autonomy, permissiveness and indulgence. Satisfaction, happiness and acceptance are promised. It is a lie.
Look at the consequences. It is obvious those things cause frustration, anger, pain, insecurity, divorce, loneliness and heartache.
God has a far better plan for your body and sexuality.
Martin Luther said that one way to know if God has your heart is if He has your pocketbook. That may pertain more to people with full-time jobs. For college students we could say, “One way to know if God has your heart is if He has your body.”
In college I had a friend who put black tape over his W.W.J.D. bracelet on Friday and Saturday nights. For a few hours he did not want to be reminded of what Jesus would do. Do you give yourself that permission?
Athlete, you have various opportunities to treat your body as less than the temple that it is. Do not forget the 1 Corinthians reality. Believe the far better truth.