When you talk about sex and church in the same sentence, for most folks, hairs go up on the back of their necks.
Heck, it does for me, too.
Sex and Church — An Unlikely Pairing
In our North American culture, sex and church go together like water and oil. Merlot and fish. Obama and Palin. S&M and Every Man’s Battle.
In the recent years of my sexual recovery, I grew wary of any kind of sexual reference in church simply because I came to believe that God is the author of my sexuality and it’s a huge part of my spiritual expression. My church sanctuary ears came to expect sex to be either vilified as the source of evil or sidelined as irrelevant in the life of the sanctified.
Until Valentines Day.
I knew this church was different when I saw the text in the bulletin listed as the Song of Songs. It’s daring as most preachers feel the need to peg the writing as symbolic and then explain its meaning — way more work than any theologian wants to do before roast beef on a Sunday.
Then the pastor read the text from Song of Songs — slow and expressive called it — erotic poetry. This was Sunday morning. Sex is for Saturday night, I thought.
My ears perked. My jaw dropped.
After the reading, the pastor called it “delicious”.
Delicious? Did I hear that right?
I leaned in. I wanted to hear more. I wanted to hear more of this sex talk in church.
I took in every word of a straight-shooting message of love, sex, and the mystery of God.
I loved worshiping with a group where sexuality wasn’t stripped of its essence. I heard words like touch, messy, bodies, and mystery. I loved wrestling with this raucous thing of love and sex in the huge context of God, creation, and man.
And I especially loved grinning at the irony of being horny on Sunday morning and anxious to worship where there’s sex in church.