Priorities are a funny thing.

When asked, it’s easy enough to name off a few things as priorities (you know, “faith, family, etc.”).  We even put pen to paper and make lists of these priorities on occasion.

Unfortunately, though, the things we say are our priorities, more often than not, are probably more accurately described as “desired priorities” rather than “actual priorities.”

Despite what we may say, the truth regarding our actual priorities will always come to light through our actions.

So what do I do when my girlfriend is pushing the limits?

That depends on my priorities.

The sad reality is that, in today’s culture, the question that’s asked more often is: “How do I get my girlfriend to push past the limits with me?”  It may not be verbalized that way, but our actions betray our priorities here.

Pursuing a life of purity isn’t easy.  Living a life of integrity isn’t without its challenges, especially when a girl is willing – and pushing you – to go too far.  But if integrity is a priority for you, then it has to be the decision you make despite how you feel in the moment.

If staying pure really is a priority, here are some steps you can take:

  • Set some boundaries.  It’s important to communicate the boundaries clearly regarding what you will and will not do.  This can involve locations you go, time of the day that you’re together, and obviously, how physical you get.
  • Stick to your boundaries.  This just makes sense.  What’s the point of having boundaries if they mean nothing?
  • Think beyond the moment.  It’s easy to get lost in the moment, and too many times we’re willing to put the future at risk to satisfy the present.  Think about the ramifications of snap decisions, and be willing to say “no” – even if it results in some hurt feelings in the short-term.  It will be worth it in the end.
  • Get accountable.  Ask someone who knows you well and cares about you (and ideally, both of you) to consistently ask you the tough questions about where your relationship is at physically.
  • Be willing to make the hard choices.  Again, your priorities will be put to the test here.  If none of these steps help, and the relationship is a toxic one for your integrity, then you need to be willing to end the relationship, or at least take a break for a while.  At the end of the day, your integrity is worth the sacrifice, and if there’s nothing holding together a relationship outside of inappropriate physical intimacy, it’s not a relationship you want to maintain in the first place.

It is possible to maintain purity in a relationship.  I pray that it’s a true priority in all of our lives.