“Boys and girls in America have such a sad time together; sophistication demands that they submit to sex immediately without proper preliminary talk. Not courting talk — real straight talk about souls, for life is holy and every moment is precious.”
― Jack Kerouac, On the Road
I’ve always loved this quote, especially since it sounds like it was written by any scene (or perhaps some of you prefer the term “emo”) band from the past 15 years, but no, it’s from Jack Kerouac’s On the Road. Kerouac’s contribution to the culture at large housed, in this single thought, something that has always struck me as inadvertently Christ-centered.
We’ve all heard it; when you have sex with someone, you are connecting to them; your souls are becoming one. The problem is that our culture has made it alright to connect with as many people as you want. As a male, I know that has become our species’ M.O. as well has having become not only acceptable but something we strive for in order to become “more of a man”, I guess? Is that still a thing? However, women see things a little differently.
I was listening to a podcast by one of my favorite speakers and band dudes Tommy Green (grab their podcasts on iTunes by searching Revolution Reality) recently and something that he and his wife touched on was one of those things you’ve probably heard a million times, but for me, it was something that hit me at the right place at the right time. Besides holding back from getting down before you’re married, they really urged restraint in the area of even using the “M” word before you’re ready. Sure, it’s such a romantic idea, especially when you’re still in the honeymoon phase of a new relationship but what we don’t realize is that that topic can also begin the soul-binding process. Whereas a guy might throw it out there in a moment of joy or romance with his girlfriend, a female (in Krissi Green’s opinion) will grab onto that word much more strongly than the male.
Whether you know it or not, you’re stepping into a very serious arena of conversation by even jokingly throwing that word into the mix. Kerouac says “Your life is holy and every moment is precious”. This sentiment is more than a Hallmark greeting card waiting to happen. We waste too much time in unhealthy relationships. We waste too much time with the one we think we’re supposed to be with rather than pursuing what God wants in our lives and praying for a partner in the meantime. We think that a significant other is the cure to all we have going wrong in our lives. This simply is not true.
“Sophistication demands…” Kids think that because they’re 14 or 15 and in the midst of puberty and they’re feeling new feelings and beginning to notice the opposite sex at school way more than usual, that they’re ready for sex, that they’re SUPPOSED to be having sex. This sucks. I know that at that age there was no way I would be able to fathom the idea of souls let alone allowing my soul to merge with another’s. I’m pretty sure I still don’t understand it fully! I hate this idea that the youth ofAmericais a perpetually sad generation. I can go back now at 27 years old and listen to the music I loved as a teenager or even early 20-something and laugh. I can take it for what it is and crack up at myself for ever thinking that these lyrics were so important, that this song or this band knew exactly what I was feeling about this girl or that situation. But truthfully, I have to wonder, did we create the art out of real life angst or did we mimic the real angst after what we heard or saw in the art in some sort of desperate attempt to attach and relate? The chicken or the egg?
There is so much pressure on teens today. It’s crazy to think that I’m only eight years removed from those years and I know that things have changed so drastically in that short time span that I can no longer relate to the struggles that are going on in teenagers today. But for anyone reading this, young or old, I urge you to seek truth, to seek the path that God has for you, and trust that if you follow what He wants for your life, that all else will be given to you. It’s not worth adding heartache to your future relationship with your spouse by messing around now in your teen years. Everything done in the dark will be brought to the light.
I’d love to know your thoughts on these topics.