The Struggle To Save Sex For Marriage – Real Truths & Practical Tips

Jun 30, 2021Challenging Topics + Faith, Relationships + Faith

In the first season of The Simple Mission Podcast, we came out with an episode all about purity knowing very little that it would be our most listened to episode still to this day. So, we decided to write a blog post on this subject since it’s not a very common topic that people are willing to talk about.

{pssssst….listen to the podcast episode if you rather listen or haven’t listened to it!}

This was a difficult topic to dive and share with you all, but we know God opened our hearts to share. We are going to be straight up, real, and honest, share the real truths behind saving sex for marriage. With that, we will share practical tips on how to accomplish this to please God.

 Full disclaimer before you read more: we are both Christians and we believe in God’s command to stay pure and wait to have sex with each other until you are both officially married under God and with witnesses.

As you are reading this blog post, we have implemented helpful bible verses that are correlated to the topic that we are writing about.

(And, you can always do your own Bible study within those Bible verses to get more context and understanding of what God means).

Applying the word of God to your life and relationships have always helped us when we were struggling or rejoicing.

To this day we try our very best to center our marriage around God’s word, instead of what the world says. Of course, we are not saying it hasn’t been difficult, but when we were struggling with staying pure during our dating days and engagement, we found ourselves praying together and going to His Word for help and guidance. But you all will read more about that later in the blog post. 🙂

Don’t worry, we also will write a list of tips to help you in your journey of pursuing purity and saving sex for marriage with your partner – it will be at the bottom of the blog post!

“Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” – 1 Corinthians 6:18-20


“Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” – Genesis 2:24


“I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or the does of the field, that you not stir up or awaken love until it pleases.” – Song of Solomon 2:7


The Choice To Save Sex For Marriage Is Ultimately Yours.

But to accomplish this can only be done with God’s help.

This is a journey that is different for each one of us. Staying pure during dating and engagement is very black and white as it gets in a relationship. But, then there could be areas that are not so black and white and could be blended into a blob of gray, and without God, there would be no way to understand or navigate through these situations and temptations.

In all reality, the choice is yours to listen to the conviction of your heart and soul if any gray areas pops up to go to God for help or follow into your desires.

If you are in a relationship right now and if you ever feel convicted or something is tugging at your heart, pray about it and find someone you trust to talk things through to help you with decisions and seeing the black and white side of things. We all know our minds can hop over to the gray area extremely quickly if we are not careful.

We do want to point this out first, if you or your partner, or both of you have had sex before marriage…

We all have a past – even if we have had sex before marriage. But, what matters as Christians is what we decide to do to pursue purity moving forward. Here are some truths for you or both of you to cling to:

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” – 2 Corinthians 5:17
“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.” – Romans 8:1-2

But, what does pursuing purity look like for one or both people in a relationship when they’ve already had sex before marriage?

Saving sex for marriage is important, but it’s not *the* most important thing to God. It can quickly become an idol for Christians, either a badge of self-righteousness or a badge of shame & guilt.

And, know this truth: the choice to save sex for marriage can start anytime, when you come to God to change your heart. And, this can only be done with God’s help & strength. Even if you trip up & make mistakes along the way, God is still a God of grace + redemption.

We are just going to be straight up and real with you, starting now: we both waited to have sex with each other until after we got married. But it was not without a long string of struggles throughout the journey to getting married.

But, we know we could not have done this without the help from God. If God was not at the center of our relationship, we know we would have failed. Committing to stay pure and honor God and your dating partner/fiancé is no easy feat; in fact, we know ourselves this will be the most difficult path to take, alongside with your dating partner/fiancé. But, it is so worth it.

Read This Below Before You Get Mad At Us

However, we need to say this. We know that many people, even Christians, have crossed the physical line of having sex in their dating or engaged relationships. And, you may be married to that person or you may have broken up, moved on, are dating again or with someone else. We do not ever want to shame, guilt, or disrespect anyone in their journey of purity.

Just being real here, we almost, like almost, crossed that physical line of sex and yes, we are Christians too. This is a huge topic that we will address and want to help you with later in this blog post, so please don’t click off. Please keep reading!


Our Personal Journey Of Struggling to Save Sex For Marriage

Y’all it was a struggle within our love story, during our dating and our 6 month-engagement to stay pure and save sex for marriage.

Dating Stage:

Recap: At the beginning of our relationship, this was not something that was a struggle for us, not getting crazy in our feelings. But, it was whenever we were alone, at someone’s house, in the car, or on the couch, that’s when lines started to blur. We started kissing more and more, and sometimes when you kiss, you start thinking crazy thoughts and your mind and body starts to want to go even further.

It was difficult in retrospect because we did almost everything right as Christians should do:

  • We had the “talk” very early on in our dating relationship where we laid everything out in the open of our expectations of dating (dating with the intention of marriage), boundaries, and saving sex for marriage.
  • We each had a daily marriage devotional that we followed to keep Jesus Christ at the center of our relationship AND to keep the Holy Spirit between us!
  • We were rarely alone, always hanging out in groups, family, church friends, or in public.

Here’s a funny (maybe cringy) story that we tried to implement to keep us accountable on our purity journey during dating and engagement. This was called the Pure and Holy Challenge (no joke!). It was a reference for 1 Thessalonians 4:3-4,7,

“For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor…For God has not called us for impurity, but in holiness.”

And, I (Lianna) thought this would totally keep us accountable and so we would say these Bible verses almost every day or every time we started pushing the physical boundaries a bit too much.

Engaged Stage:

But, whenever we got engaged, we got even more crazy for each other and our purity and holiness began to go downhill. Especially when we were alone – and we were alone a lot. Sometimes, by accident and sometimes, intentionally. We understand that it’s so difficult to find ways to NOT be alone.

For example, you could be at someone’s house, and one person has to run to the store or go somewhere else, then you have to get out of the way and get somewhere in order to not be alone. But, our flesh desires more. So, we would fall into our fleshly desires many times, but know this truth that kept giving us hope:

“No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” – 1 Corinthians 10:13

We know that every time we kept pushing the boundaries a bit more, it was all because we were kissing and making out a ton. So, think on this: make it a rule to not kiss more than pecks on the lips or cheeks. We know, we know that this is extremely difficult, especially if you both have kissed and made out many times. It will feel strange and foreign to be sitting right next to them and not make out, even though you really want to.

But, it is a way to respect and honor yourself, your partner, and God. That is completely up to you – pray to God about it and talk on this, especially if this is something that pushes you to want to do more that could lead to sex.

Another tip is to stay busy (no, not in that way lol). Stay busy means to fill your life with fun activities, things that need to get done, run errands, focus on school or work, join a Bible study group, etc. When we first got engaged, I (Lianna) was on winter break during my senior year of college, so I had much free time, TOO much free time on my hands.

But, whenever we decided on the wedding date which was 6 short months away and I went back for my last semester of college, it was go time. We were too preoccupied to even think about getting crazy due to the wedding planning and finishing up my senior year strong.

Here is the thing: if you are struggling too much together to save sex, dabble in other gray areas, or have slept together multiple times, there are TWO options.

OPTION One: Pray and ask God over the relationship or engagement you are in. Are you called to marry this person or not? I know this is not an easy question to hear and to face the truth, but it is better now to see if it’s time to break it off with this person or to stay together, rather than wasting time and energy into something that will not work.

You can also ask your trusted family, friends, and mentors on what they truly think of your relationship and truly listen to their encouragement or concerns.

OPTION Two: Get married. Yes, go and get married – this could be a courthouse wedding and elope or plan a quick 1 to 3 months wedding ceremony with a few of your loved ones and get married. If this is the person God called you to be with only after praying to God first and asking your trusted people first 😉

If you have been dating or engaged for a long time, what is really holding you back? And, Paul even said this in 1 Corinthians as well,

“To the unmarried and the widows I say that it is good for them to remain single, as I am. 9 But if they cannot exercise self-control, they should marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion.” – 1 Corinthians 7:8-9

This next section is something that we wrote in our blog post, Preparing for Marriage For Singles, Dating, & Engaged:

We thought this related heavily to our encouragement for anyone that have had sex before marriage and wanted to give you insights from the Bible and from a place of love. if you would like to read more from that blog post too, head over here!

So, this ties into what the next important tip is this: do not give your partner or fiancé the privileges that only your husband and wife should have! I know this can be a touchy subject for many people including Christians; however, we feel that God has called us to gently teach and share this tip in love and gentleness.

“Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. Perhaps God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth. 26 Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil’s trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants.” – 2 Timothy 2:25-26 NLT

Just because you are wanting to get married or are engaged, does not mean they have the rights or privileges that only your true husband and wife should have…we are saying this hard thing because this will prevent many problems down the road. And we do not want you to have these problems because Jesus loves you too much to not share the truth.

We’ve had many people in our lives that wish they had waited, many couples we’ve known have said they were going to get married someday, some lived together for years as engaged couples and never tied the knot; some couples that everyone assumed they were going to get married because they were “perfect” for one another, or some couples who were engaged and shockingly broke up. And these included people raised in the church.

There were many issues in their relationship that they did not work through or were not founded on the right foundation until it was too late. They were following their own desires and plans together and not placing God first and not following what He says is right.

We are writing this not to scare you or to make you feel bad, but this is your life. We want to truly help you prepare for marriage, to have a beautiful, Jesus-centered marriage, free of any deep sin, baggage, and problems being brought into your marriage.

This also ties into the section where we brought up the question, “Are you meant to be with this person you are with and to marry them?” earlier in this post, to make sure God has blessed the relationship before taking it to the next level, like marriage.

If there is an issue, sin, behavior, or habit that is not dealt with outside of marriage, it will be amplified to extraordinary levels within marriage. If you are currently struggling with something in this season, it’s perfectly okay to get some help. Take that first step in the process of healing and restoration by acknowledging that there is some sin in this area of my life that I have not properly dealt with.

Go to the Lord in prayer and find someone that you trust that will tell you the honest truth and your life and the lives of others that surround you will change.

Here are some encouraging Bible verses to pray on & to celebrate that God is so merciful to forgive all of our sins:

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.”
– Psalm 51:10-12
“If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
– 1 John 1:8-9

As promised, here are all the real tips that we had implemented into our relationship in our pursuit of purity together. You can take any one of these tips and use it, change it up, or add your own spin and ideas to it!



  • Hang out in groups, as much as you both can.
  • Try not to be alone.
  • Create and agree on boundaries to not cross very early on in the relationship, not when you are heated in the moment.
  • Do a devotional or Bible study together.
  • Read a relevant Christian book together on dating/engagement or learning more on love through God’s Word.
  • Be clear on WHY you are dating each other, (example – for marriage or for fun.) This can save you more heartache later on if you are both not on the same page or not in the same stage of life.
  • KNOW that it’s never too late to bring the relationship back onto the right path. (if you or both have struggled with purity or sin, whether now or past)
  • If you cannot help it but to kiss, don’t allow it to ever go past more than just on lips.
  • Do fun hobbies or other things together to have fun and stay busy (keeps your mind off the purity struggle & get you out and about, instead of Netflix and chill)
  • If you are going out of town with your partner to visit family or friends, have sleeping arrangements ready ahead of time to ensure ZERO opportunities, separate rooms or even separate houses is even better!
  • Have an accountability partner and actually listen to them and tell them when you or both of y’all have fallen off the track. And, follow through on their advice too!
  • Don’t have Netflix and chill dates alone, ever.
  • If watching TV or movies, stay in the living room with people at home, so they can walk in anytime 😉
  • Don’t lay down together, not even on a couch. No going into bedrooms alone.
  • If you do end up alone together under any circumstances, ask Jesus for strength and remind yourself and your partner of the commitment to staying pure.
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Thank you for reading,


David & Lianna Bond

The choice to save sex for marriage is yours, but cannot be done without God. We share honest tips & truth on what saving sex for marriage looks like.
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