Let’s talk about you and me (sorry — had to! But since you’re here, let’s talk about sex. Seriously). Because, whether or not you have “lived in sin,” you have lived in Sin, for we live in a fallen world.

When we say, “Sin,” we don’t mean your sin (you gotta take that up with Jesus), we mean the inevitable, overarching darkness that we face as products of humanity — a compilation of our parents’ sins, and our grandparents’ sins, and the sins committed against us, and our iniquity. It isn’t a goal of ours, dear reader, to condemn you — far from it. Rather, it’s an honest reminder that we live in a world that has seen mankind fall to the depths of darkness at the hands of Satan, and as much as we bear the image of God, the Prince of Darkness, the Father of Lies, the slanderer is here, and he’s at work.

Sexual immorality is plaguing our generation.

Sexual “freedom”, or promiscuity, is the devil’s idea. It’s certainly not God’s best for us, for we know that the “boundary lines have fallen in pleasant places” for his children, a kind reminder from Psalm 16:6. Let’s get real for a minute, because we are family — brothers and sisters in Christ. Satan has come after all of us in this area; not one of us is immune to temptation.

For many of us, this looks like a past of sexual impurity and immorality. This looks like a past of brokenness, and of redemption. We dot the spectrum of sexuality from pure to promiscuous and everything in between. Perhaps, if you fall into the category of the latter, you have been saved by the grace of God and know just how vast, and all-consuming, and kind, is His grace. Or, perhaps this is something you are still learning.

A friend of mine recently — in a discussion over sexual purity — confessed, “I sometimes envy people that get married as virgins, because they’re set. They have it easy.”

To further clarify, she meant that virgins that marry should consider themselves blessed, because they enter into marriage without a history marked by sexual immorality. And yes, this is true, but only to an extent — and it probably stops shorter than we often think. We get confused and assume that a virgin coming into marriage is as good as saintly, but God cares so much more about your heart posture than he cares about all the ways in which you’ve sinned.

Someone that has been born again might have to fight harder to maintain their purity. The enemy knows your weaknesses; he tracks the way temptation catches your eye. He knows your history; he knows what has caused you to stumble, and will try it again and again and again.

Rest assured, child of God, that Satan is lazy and unimaginative. He knows what has caused your stumble before, and he will stick to the pattern of his devilish ways — but you are smart, and you know to watch for it.

And, you have the strength of God to lift you up when you cannot make it on your own.

Luke 18:10-14: “Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: ‘I thank you God, that I am not like other people — cheaters, sinners, adulterers, I’m certainly not like that tax collector! But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorry, saying…

‘O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner. I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

He sings over the souls of the humble; He delights so much more in a humble heart than a past without flaw. Like the story of the Prodigal Son, He runs to us to celebrate our return. Every time. Even when we fall, His grace is morning dew, fresh each day with the rising of the sun.

A human is a human, and sin is sin and lust is lust and impurity is impurity (manifest in an immeasurable number of ways), but redemption reigns over us all.

Redemption is our common denominator, our saving grace, our gift from God, a powerful and eternal residual effect of the resurrection. Praise God.

British Theologian NT Wright says it so encouragingly in his book, Surprised by Hope: “Only in the Christian story itself — certainly not in the secular stories of modernity [which, by the way, emphasize your sexuality and your desire and your power so much that these things become you first and foremost] — do we find any sense that the problems of the world are solved not by a straightforward upward movement into the light but by the creator God going down into the dark to rescue humankind and the world from its plight.

The Psalmist reminds us in 34:18, “ The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”

He is near to you, son of God. He will save you and redeem your crushed spirit, daughter of the Most High. He does not love anyone more than He loves you. He loves His children, desperate to know us and restore us and love us ‘till no end —

Yes, even you and me (baby).