For Christians, the wedding night is a treated with sacred significance – and for many young women, a whole lot of fear. Because of the biblical emphasis on sex within marriage, Christian culture has placed a burden of weight on the wedding night that this one evening really doesn’t deserve.
That said, pretending the wedding night doesn’t exist and refusing to educate young women about their sexuality, their bodies, and the act of intimacy itself is a foolish decision. It is bad stewardship of a very good gift. So how much should one think about the wedding night before it happens, and should they do it at all? I think young women should absolutely consider this before the big day, but within some healthy boundaries.
How You Think Matters
If, each night as you drift off to sleep, you rehearse your future wedding night – this is an unhealthy, obsessive thought pattern. Not only does this create a space for idolatry to take hold, it makes the single season far more difficult than is necessary. How you think about your wedding night matters!
Too often, Christian girls use the future as a way to numb the present. They deal with anxiety and stress not by going to Christ, but by retreating into the recesses of their minds. The scenarios played out in their heads may seem harmless, but in reality cause significant emotional and spiritual damage.
But other girls don’t think about their wedding night to assuage the ache of singleness; they avoid the topic like the plague. They are terrified of the “first time”, often because of a limited or unbiblical sex education. Fear keeps them from understanding the beauty of their bodies and the incredibility of God’s design – fear of “awakening love”, even at the cost of a very necessary sexual education.
When I was preparing for labor with my first child, my mantra was “Knowledge removes fear.” When you know what to expect, and what your body is capable of, there is no room for fear! And what works for labor works for sex as well. You do not have to fear your wedding night (read why here) and if you do, it’s time to let God change your sexual perspective.
You are free to think about your wedding night – but how you think about it affects how you live.
How Often You Think Matters
Just as the patterns of your mind affect your sexual perspective, how often you think about sex in marriage reveals your priorities. Even if you’re engaged, it is far better to spend your time educating yourself about sex through great resources like The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex or Intended for Pleasure than imagining what it will be like. Reality is not imagination!
Your time is precious. Use it wisely, and remember that returning to the same thought again and again is only healthy if it points you to Christ. If it makes you impatient, discontent, or lustful, that is not a Christ-centered thought. Even “good” thoughts can become idols if we allow our eyes to be fixed on them. Stand your guard.
Who You Think About Matters
If you’re single, do not imagine your crush or boyfriend into a wedding night scenario. This is a gateway to lustful living! Until you’re married, fantasizing about a sexual relationship has no place in your mind – and when you’re married, fantasy should only revolve around you and your husband.
If you can’t think about the wedding night without imagining someone into it, it’s not a healthy topic for your mind. Even if you’re engaged, imagining you and your fiance won’t help you stay the course as temptation increases. When you discuss sex together (for premarital counseling, education, and other wedding preparations) do so openly and honestly, but in an environment that doesn’t let temptation get out of hand.
So Yes – Think About Your Wedding Night!
The answer is YES – think about your wedding night, if that means educating yourself about sexuality (and I wrote a book to help you do just that!), prayerfully changing your sexual perspective, and looking to the future with joy! Simply be ready to guard your mind when you sense idolatry or discontent setting in.
And the truth? The wedding night is meaningful, but it’s not the best sex you’ll ever have. It can’t be! Sex is a journey that only gets better with time. So there’s no need for fear or anxiety – this isn’t you’re only shot! You have the rest of your marriage to improve upon that beginning.
Because the wedding night is not a destination – it’s the beginning of something new.