I Really Hate Porn

What is so degrading about pornography? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

In my office where I write my blog from, I have two pictures. One is on my desk. One is on my bookshelf. There are some other pictures in here, but these are my favorite ones. These are both pictures of my wife Allie.

I look at them and I think that I married a beautiful woman.

I also think that I am the man she trusts her very self to and all of her beauty to.

That is not to brag about me! Not a bit! I still don’t understand it! I’m just a nerdy little apologist. The song Angel Eyes with the line of “What you’re doing with a clown like me is surely one of life’s little mysteries” fits so well.

I’m not the only one who wonders this. There’s a story that when my mother found out I was dating Allie, my sister showed her some of Allie’s pictures on Facebook. My Mom apparently said, “Good grief. How did he get a girl like her?” Allie thought I would be insulted hearing it. Not a bit. I took it as a compliment. How could I be insulted when I ask myself the same thing?

There’s also the reality that as an Aspie, my diet has always been unusual. My parents tried to work with several people for years to get me to change. Didn’t budge an inch. Allie did it easily within marriage and hardly had to try. Could it be female beauty is a motivator?

I have been terrified of water for years. It was a long time after my conversion before I was even baptized. When we went on our honeymoon at Ocean Isle Beach, Allie got me in five feet of water in the pool away from the edge and into waist deep water in the ocean. I was still scared silly, especially in the pool, but I did it.

Could it be female beauty is a motivator?

I don’t care for the movie or the book, but I did watch Heaven Is For Real and there’s a scene where the husband of the family is saying he does not want to go somewhere, I think it was Denver. The wife comes out and talks to him. She says something like, “Really? Because I thought we could” and then goes and whispers in his ear.

The next thing you hear is him immediately telling the kids to pack the bags.

Every husband understands that scene.

You see, Allie sharing her body with me is an expression of love and trust to me. It is a great motivator and confidence builder. Many women think sex is a physical need for men, and while the physical is there, it is also a great emotional need. It is what makes us feel close and desired by our wives. It resonates deeply with the heart of a man. It’s the loudest way my wife tells me that I am her man.

That’s why I hate pornography.

Now I know some women could be reading this and saying, “Pornography is also a struggle for many women!” I know it is. I’m not denying that. I am speaking as a man and from the perspective of a man. You can try to extrapolate what you can for the female.

I don’t struggle with porn, but I have a sympathy for guys who do. I understand it some. I mean, God made women beautiful. It is no sin to think that. It would be crazy to not think that. We men always notice beautiful women. I can’t go through the grocery store without noticing beautiful women. If the only argument I had for the existence of God was the beauty of the human female form, it would be more than enough.

Pornography cheapens that. It tells me that if I want to get a woman’s beauty, all I need to do is click a button on my computer. Really? How does that make me a man? Any guy can do that. I can click a button if I want to buy a book on Amazon. Doesn’t make me a man.

If anything, I think watching porn will make you less of a man. After all, no need to go out there and win over the woman. Can’t do it? Go watch porn. Wife’s not in the mood tonight? Okay. Go click on a link and just watch some other woman. Get your fix in. (Which also means you end up treating women like objects.)

That requires no real effort. Anytime Allie trusts me with herself, it is her telling me that I have shown myself to be a trustworthy man and she knows she can be completely vulnerable to me. You don’t get that from porn. Porn requires nothing of you.

And let’s be honest. The woman on the screen you’re watching? She doesn’t know about you. She doesn’t have any passionate thoughts about you. She doesn’t care about you. She is not aiming to please you. She is just doing a job for her.

By the way, let’s also be clear. Some women are not in the field by choice. The sex trafficking industry captures a number of women and they are forced into this kind of thing. Yes. Watching pornography could be also encouraging the sex trafficking of women.

Pornography would also be me telling Allie that somehow, she is inadequate. Her body is not enough. I need another female body. Why on Earth would I want to do that? I’m more than amazed I got the woman that I got! Am I tempted? Of course. We all have struggles of the flesh, but I would not want to give up a lifetime of Allie for a quick glance at another woman.

It’s also why I have no desire to have an affair and why I watch myself around other women. I don’t want to have something come back and haunt me later on. I don’t want to raise the slightest rumor that I’m in any way unfaithful to my wife, and I realize there can indeed be set-ups like that. I fully support the rule of people like Billy Graham and Mike Pence.

I also have a theory about the commercials I often hear driving. I hear so many commercials about erectile dysfunction here. I think pornography could be one of the reasons. I think some men have spent so much time being aroused by fake women and they need more and more that a real woman no longer turns them on.

It’s been eight years for Allie and I and she is still the woman that drives me wild and her beauty never gets tiring.

Also men, pornography will not tell you what real love is like with a woman. Anytime we see a sex scene even in a movie or a TV show, my wife and I know it’s unrealistic. In the movies, everything always works and flows perfectly. No one makes mistakes or has a learning curve and there’s never anything that goes wrong. Not at all realistic. Sadly also something that is missed is that you don’t hit your peak immediately, but that’s a good thing. It just keeps getting better. Why would it not? I spend my marriage diving into the ocean of one woman instead of wading in the shallow pools of many.

Keep in mind what I am agreeing to guys. Women are beautiful. That’s something clear in reality and clear in Scripture. We might hesitate to speak sexually, but Scripture sure doesn’t! I happen to think woman as the last creation of God was meant to be God giving us an image of beauty. If we ever have a daughter one day, I want to name her some variant of Eve. Why? I want her to know that she is a representative of God’s beauty on this Earth and every man out there better treat her beauty as sacred.

That’s what it comes down to in many ways. Pornography does not treat a woman’s beauty as sacred. It treats it as cheap and common.

Now of course, many men are struggling with porn out there. I think we need to give them support and understanding if they are really wanting to get past it. This includes wives of such men. Don’t compromise, but try to work with them. If they really want to get past it, give them your support.

If you are married, be thankful for your wife. Enjoy her love. Scripture commands you to, but hey, that’s a pretty easy command to follow. When Scripture tells me to rejoice in the wife of my youth I can playfully say, “Well sure, God. If you really insist….” As if I needed any encouragement!

Pornography treats women in a cheap way. If you treat one woman like that, you treat all of them like that. Treasure the woman that you have. If you love the one woman you do have, you are showing love to all women.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Book Plunge: I Wish He Had Come With Instructions- The Woman’s Guide To A Man’s Brain

What do I think of Mike Bechtle’s published by Revell books? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

So why would I, a married guy, read a book written for women on how to understand men? Because a married man likes myself is always trying to understand myself as well. We guys are often seen as simple creatures, and to some extent we are, but there are also facets about ourselves that we don’t understand.

Bechtle’s book helps to bring these out. One rule he starts off with seems obvious, but it’s one we often forget. Don’t make assumptions about what the other person is thinking. They’re usually wrong and will only lead to trouble. Don’t bother. Try to find out in their own words what they’re thinking.

He also points out that women usually see men as having faulty thinking. It’s amazing that in our culture, men are told that they need to be more like women in the name of “equality”, but strangely enough, women don’t get the opposite message.

Bechtle says that we need to also not focus on our differences, but first on what we have in common. Those are far greater. Some of those differences, after all, will never change because one person is male and the other is female. At this point, it’s good to point out that the material in this book is not just good for husbands and wives, but other relationships, like mothers and sons.

If you want to see the other person changed, don’t try to change them directly. Don’t try to fix them. No one likes that. Instead, show them they’re loved and accepted as they are and give them a safe place. Many a man will change on his own.

It’s also important to note that Bechtle writes what he does assuming good and healthy males. This does not apply to a situation where abuse is taking place. If this is you in a relationship, this book is not for you and you need to get some help immediately.

Another recurring theme is that when men are little boys, they want an audience to see what they’ve done. I remember I wanted to show my parents my beating video games and when I got together with the other boys, I was always happy to show them how it was that you were supposed to beat the boss. Well, what happened to that boy when he grew up? He got taller. He’s still the same boy and especially in a marriage, he’s more often than a woman realizes trying to say to his wife, “Look at me! Look at me!”

In the marriage relationship, which will be my primary focus, this is another reason a man will often want to do anything to make his wife happy. He is still trying to impress her and if he feels rejected, it strikes him greatly. This is another point. All men are really insecure. We put on a brave face, but there’s a hidden insecurity.

Every man is in competition it seems with every other man. To go back to video games, this is one area where my friends and I constantly challenged one another growing up. I remember I got Chronotrigger after my best friend at the time had had it for a week. We were still in a competition to see who could finish it first. Naturally, the only reason I bring up that competition is to point out that I did finish it first. I think four hours before he did actually.

This is why praise from a woman means so much to a man. It tells him that the relationship is still good. If men experience or don’t experience something in a relationship that leads them to think something is wrong, they’re not as able to function. Their mind is going back to what they think a problem is and trying to fix it. We aim to impress.

There are also several quotes he has from men that they wish women knew. The ideas are ones I’ve felt in my own marriage. We think you’re pretty as you are and mean it so please stop arguing with us when we say it. We understand you put on make-up, but we think you look great naturally. Confidence is extremely beautiful to us and we want you to have confidence around us.

He also pointed out that men connect with activity, which did help me understand some things. Why is it that I want to watch that TV show only when my wife is around? Because it’s not just about the show, but it’s also about connecting with her. This is something we do together.

Also, men want to feel desired. We don’t just want to be a duty necessity that you have to please. If you flirt with us, it can change our outlook for the day. For me, something I like is holding my wife close and just having her rest her head on my chest. It means a lot. It tells me she feels safe with me, something I thought a woman would never ever think.

Men also tend to be more singularly focused. Now this might not apply to me as I do tend to multitask in everything that I do, but it does explain why we can zone out. Have a man watching a game and his wife talking to him and he won’t hear everything going on. She doesn’t understand it. For him, he’s just caught in another world. He’s not trying to be rude.

Men also have a desire to be a hero. Listen to a news story about a guy who suddenly becomes a hero one day, like Sully. What is every man thinking? “I want to be that guy.” Look at the video games he plays and the movies he watches. Those usually involve a hero the guy wants to be like. (It’s also amazing how many times the hero does something to impress the woman. That’s how men see romance.)

So ladies, your man might not ever be a Sully and receive worldwide acclaim for something, but you know what will suffice for him? If he gets to be your hero. If you treat him as the man who has rescued you and swept you off your feet, you will leave him walking tall.

Let’s go a step further. Your guy could be the hero to everyone else out there, but if he doesn’t think he’s your hero, he doesn’t care. None of it matters. Your man wants to be your hero more than anyone else’s. He would rather be a failure to everyone else and a hero to you than vice-versa.

This also means ladies that be very careful about criticizing your man. If he goes and cleans the dishes for you and does it wrong, if you start immediately telling him what he did wrong, he will get the opposite message. He has been criticized and his ability, which means his masculinity, has been called into question. It’s safer to not risk that again.

Start off with praise first. Praise is huge to a man. Give him praise when he does good and he will listen. Praise him when he does the dishes and then show him how he can make it even better and he will wash the dishes every time for that praise.

This is definitely true ladies. As I heard a man say years ago, many a man will do something absolutely stupid and reckless just to hear some other guy say, “You the man!” It means that much to us.

Some women will also wonder why their husband was Prince Charming when dating but turned into a slob when they married or just didn’t seem to take it as seriously. Let me also bring out something Becthle doesn’t mention. Many men I know say “My wife couldn’t keep her hands off of me when we were dating and now that we’re married she’s suddenly switched.” Yeah. It frustrates us also. Men do this because we are better at conquering than maintaining. We got your heart. We won the prize. We tend to think it’s time to go on to the next endeavor in the relationship. (I will say I do not think I am like this. I am still always trying to sweep my Princess off her feet.)

Also, for the most part, men don’t understand emotions. They tend to have fear or anger as their main emotions. Be aware of this in disagreement.

Also, men do connect with doing as I said, but men all still like to play. They want to play with the women in their lives. This doesn’t mean just sex, although it sure does include that, but it means any activity together. Maybe it might not seem like fun to you, but it does to him. We want the relationship to be fun.

Men also do indeed need sex in a marriage, but something they want more is passion. They want to know you’re excited. You see sex with them as a privilege and not just a duty. Think about it women. How many of you want your guy to treat you to a dinner date and then just say, “Well let’s just make this quick” or “I guess if we have to go out we have to.” You want him to really enjoy his time with you and consider it a chance to connect. That’s how your man views sex and when you are passionate and eager for him, it tells him that he is desirable. When you are not and he is just duty sex, it tells him he’s not. Actions speak louder.

Becthle’s book is full of great insights. Not just women need to read this. Men do too. Perhaps even, dare I say it, husbands and wives go through this together. I can imagine a wife many times saying “Is that true?” and hearing “Yep” and being amazed. Men are simple creatures, but maybe we’re not as simple as you think.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Book Plunge: What Wives Wish Their Husbands Knew About Sex

When I’m reading books that aren’t apologetics, I’m usually reading marriage books, and when I’m reading those, it’s not a shock as a married guy that sex is one of the favorite topics. When you see the topic of what wives wish their husbands knew, that’s even better.

However, to be fair,  I do wish a book with such a title was written by women. I understand that the men all have professional experience as counselors, but still, going to the source is good. Nevertheless, these men want to have a frank talk with us fellow men.

They also want it to be fully Biblical. At the start they say that if Christians are mean to be exemplars of love, we should be the greatest lover of all. Think about it. When have you heard about women getting together chatting and if one says she’s dating a Christian will be told, “You are going to get a great guy. Those guys really love their wives!”

It doesn’t happen often sadly. That’s something we Christian husbands need to be aware of. Christian husbands should be seen as the best lovers in the world.

The authors also point out the problems of the attitudes of Puritanism and pornography. Now I’m skeptical that the take on Puritanism historically is accurate, but let’s go with the attitude for now that we all know is being talked about. Puritanism of this sort makes it that we should have no sexual desires and it’s something dirty to not be talked about. Pornography does the exact opposite saying that anything sexual is good.

Both turn us into cowards. As the authors say, puritanism makes a man about as passionate as a wet chihuahua. Pornography makes a man settle for a virtual image instead of going out and getting a real woman.

The authors also ask us to think about how many times we’ve heard sermons on sex. Did they focus on the negatives instead of the positives? The only positives I can remember is as a boy hearing someone from Hope Resource Center in Knoxville speaking about sex.

Sadly, the other main time I remember is being a college student at a Silver Ring Thing service which is like True Love Waits. The associate pastor got up and he started talking about sex. He told the people there that if they gave in before marriage that it would be for selfish reasons. Okay. I can agree with that.

Then he went on to say “What if you get pregnant? Think about the shame you’ll feel. Think about what you’ll tell a future spouse. Think about if you get an STD.”

I was sitting back there thinking those were selfish reasons as well.

And oh yeah, I was getting bored.

And if you are teaching about sex and you have a college age guy in the audience getting bored, you’re doing it wrong.

The authors also want us to know that men need to be patient. We guys are ready to go from the get go. Usually, if you are a wife and want to get a husband in the mood, just ask him if he’d like to have sex. He’ll likely be in the mood already. Women aren’t like that, and that’s not always a bad thing.

Guys. If it takes more to get the wives excited, go with it. That’s more time you get to spend with her anyway and more time giving her happiness. Isn’t her happiness worth it?

Also, there’s a saying I heard years ago that the authors go with though they never say it. Sex begins at breakfast. Cultivate a relationship throughout the day with your wife. Too many guys come home after doing nothing with their wives all day, including sending loving text messages, prop their feet up on the footstool, turn on the remote, ask for dinner, and then expect their wife to be lovey-duvey at the end of the day.

Guys. Court your wives. Treat her the way you did when you were dating. Yesterday, my wife and I were leaving somewhere and I was getting her in the car and a girl comes out and said, “Awww! He holds open the car door for you.”

Well, of course, I do. Why wouldn’t I? That’s being a gentleman! I also want Allie and everyone else to know that I’m serious about her. I desire her. Because I’m married doesn’t mean that I need to coast.

And guys, women really struggle with feeling beautiful. Look at all the women that they see in public. Sure they’re airbrushed and everything else. It doesn’t change things. Women think they need to look like supermodels.

The authors also stick a lot of times with the Song of Songs. Great place to go to talk about sex. Look at the way the woman speaks in there. She doesn’t see a problem with talking about the flesh. Her body is not sinful or dirty. It is to be appreciated and enjoyed. A lot of women sadly think that anything dealing with the body is dirty. Not at all. Your body was designed to be enjoyed and so that you could experience that joy fully.

And ladies, that’s how God designed it. Men have a need to be physically close with their wives. You can be with your husband all day and in the same room and everything else, but without physical contact, you might as well be miles apart. I know many a man who has bemoaned a lack of sex in his marriage. It’s a real issue. Without sex, a man does not feel close to his wife.

At the same time, the authors want to give a caution. Men will not feel like they’re in the mood all the time. Sometimes, we do think about other things. (It’s rare, but it happens.) Meanwhile, women can actually get in the mood without being warmed up first. It happens. There’s nothing wrong with them.

The writers also talk about a comedian who was mocking monogamy saying monogamy is like having the same box of cereal for breakfast everyday. They give a good jab back in saying that if you are comparing sex to cold cereal, you’re doing sex wrong. Monogamy is a wonderful way to experience sex. You get to dive deeper and deeper into that love.

The authors tells us that if sex is only for your appetite, then you’re not going to enjoy it. If it’s to get to know a person and come to embrace a person, welcome to Paradise. The best thing about sex really is not that you have sex, but that you get to have it with that person.

They also say good sex is not about technique really. It’s true. Honestly, much of what is needed is simply just active desire for the other person. Ladies. It’s okay to be active in the bedroom. If anything, your husband would love it.

The authors are right that if we could learn more about sex and making it great, how awesome that would be. What would it say if the world knew that if you wanted to learn how to have a great sex life, you go to the Christians? Why shouldn’t they anyway? Our God literally created it and He wrote the book on it, the Song of Songs.

They also encourage men that they need to be men and not Peter Pan. Embrace their manhood, which could include dealing with past father wounds. Do what you can to take care of your body as well. It is the temple you bring to your wife after all.

Vulnerability is also essential to sex, and the more you’re comfortable and willing to be vulnerable, the more you can enjoy it. Trust is huge. Really. Husbands and wives both need to learn that they’re accepted just as they are. For my part, it blows my mind that my wife accepts me just as I am. That makes me so happy to be around her. This is the one woman who really accepts me as I am so why not enjoy it?

There’s also a chapter in there for the ladies. What do your husbands wish you knew? One thing is we wish you would just tell us what you want. We can’t read minds and we’re very slow to pick up cues. Just tell us.

Also, believe it or not, good husbands spend a lot of time thinking about their wife’s happiness.  That includes in the bedroom. If we think we’re not making you happy there, we see ourselves as failures. If you don’t desire us, we see ourselves that way.

That’s why we love it when you initiate. It’s not just one-sided. No man wants to be just duty sex in his marriage. He wants you to love not just being a woman, but being his woman. If sex is a delight for you like it is for him, you will have a happy man.

By the way, try to understand him on this. If you want to understand why your husband looks at your body with such awe, realize God wired him that way. Men have a whole lot more testosterone flowing through their bodies. We will think about sex a whole lot more. We have to control it, but it’s not an evil about us really.

Overall, I think this is a very good book and it’s very humorous at times. I do hope men will get this to learn how to be better lovers. Hopefully also, our wives will want to help us in our learning experience.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

The Struggle Of Men

What does a man have to deal with in today’s world? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I have seen two different things this past week and yet, I think they’re both related. One is a female friend of mine who posted about what it is like probably for seminarians and ministers who are men. She is not justifying any struggles that they have with pornography, but is wanting us to understand why they turn to pornography.

When you go to seminary or enter ministry, you sign up for a hard life really. I went to Southern Evangelical for quite awhile and sadly, thinking back, I don’t really remember anything being said about pornography. Maybe it was and I’ve forgotten it. I don’t doubt looking back that some of my fellow students were struggling with pornography.

Often while driving with my wife down the road, we hear commercials here for men who are struggling with ED. I tell my Princess regularly that I suspect the reason for much of the struggle is pornography. There are men in their 20’s who have to be on Viagra. This is many times because they’ve got so used to airbrushed and fake women in porn that they don’t know how to get aroused by a real woman. That’s too tame for them.

Btw, let’s keep in mind also that many people in porn could be there because of human trafficking. Watching porn can, in that case, be giving power to this kind of thing. I find it interesting that many atheists who complain about slavery in the Bible can have no problem with porn which can lead to sexual slavery easily.

Many men turn to this because, first off, we tend to be very visual and have a high drive. This is not the case for all, but it is our natural tendency. We also live in a world where sex is all around us. You can say that we can turn off the TV and things like that. Yeah. Not going to solve the problem. A man just needs to go to the grocery store. I’m not even talking about the magazine rack. Men are drawn to beautiful women and in our day and age, women do dress to be beautiful.

I am not saying that is wrong at all! Women should do that! Women are beautiful and that should be celebrated. If a man cannot control himself, that is the fault of the man. Of course, there is a difference if a woman is trying to deliberate show herself off. There is a fine line here where both sides need to be considerate of the other.

Men often feel the pressure and pornography will make a man feel like a man. This is something all men long for. All men want to be men and if a man feels aroused, he certainly feels like a man. The problem is it’s all fake. It really requires nothing of the man. It is not a challenge. All he has to do is click the right web sites on his computer today.

In the past, women complained about being treated like objects, and rightly so, but today the women are often objectifying themselves. It’s too easy to go out and give everything you have to a guy immediately or have these topless marches and put yourself out there on display. If anything, this allows women to be treated more like objects. Abortion on demand doesn’t make it any better. Now men don’t have to worry about consequences, like children.

Many good guys have suffered from this. This past week I have seen good guys struggle with being single. It really touched me, because I do remember those days. What really irked me was hearing women talk about how they just wanted a nice guy who cared about them and their feelings. Never did believe it. Good men often get overlooked and the guys who are often some of the sleaziest do not.

These men really struggle.

Getting married doesn’t necessarily end all the problems. It can help, but many times our society has taught women that men are dirty perverts because they think about sex so much. While for the most part, we do, that’s not because we’re perverts. This is a good thing that God made and He made men and women to enjoy it.

For we men, there’s great misunderstanding on how essential this is to us in marriage. Often a man will complain about getting duty sex where the wife just goes along because she knows her husband needs it, but there’s no real desire on that part. For a man, duty sex beats no sex, but it’s not really satisfying. Men want to be wanted. They want to know they are appealing and attractive and bring joy to their wives.

A man will often measure himself by his accomplishments and for a husband, one of those is bringing joy to his wife. If a man brings joy to his wife everywhere else, but he doesn’t seem to in the bedroom, he feels like a failure. This is really such a great area in men’s lives that many women just don’t understand. (An excellent place to go to is the XY Code by Paul Byerly. He writes from a Christian perspective to help women understand men.)

Here’s the good news for you wives. If you do desire and pursue your husband, you will make this so much easier for him. You have great power. It’s really hard for men and they struggle more when they don’t feel desired and they’re trying to work with this burning question of their own masculinity looming in the background. (Women wanting help in this area can be blessed greatly by going to To Love, Honor, And Vacuum.)

Men struggle today and I am convinced our society is in a war against men. Masculinity is looked down on in our world. Men are in a struggle to determine if they really are men and sadly, they think going out and having sex will prove that they are. It won’t. It can give that feeling no doubt, but the best way to be a man is to properly love the women in your life, and this includes even if you are single. You do not have to be sexually active to be a man after all.

For those of us who are Christians, that means definitely avoiding pornography which treats women as objects and doesn’t require any challenge of going out and winning the heart of a real woman, a real accomplishment. It is far better to win the heart and then body of a real woman than to go out and do nothing to get a fake one, and sadly the fake one can make it harder to act with the real one. Also, save sex for marriage. Make a covenant with the woman first and then enjoy the fruit of the covenant.

And women, we men should understand you, but understand where the men you encounter are coming from. I know many men who struggle with porn and wish that they didn’t and are working to overcome it. (Women can struggle too, but this post is about men.) Your husband also is not a pervert because he thinks about sex so much. This is the way God made men and they function best when kept happy. What they really want is not just a release, but they want you. They want to feel close to you and accepted and loved by you and sex does that best.

It’s a hard time to be a man in today’s world. The church needs to recognize this as well and be there for men, especially those struggling with pornography. Condemn the action, but remember the man can often be a victim of his own desires.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

The Risk Of Love

What does it mean to love someone? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Recently, my wife posted an article about Borderline Personality Disorder. The person talked about their past romantic relationships and how hard romance was for someone like them. A friend commented saying how hard it can be to love some people and sometimes you might have to take a break for your own well-being.

Being married to someone who has been diagnosed with BPD, I had a few things to say.

Can it be hard to love someone like that? It can be, but that depends first off on what is meant by love. Second, it can be because it can be hard to love ANYONE. As C.S. Lewis said years ago, we are all very hard to live with.

So let’s start with love. We have four kinds.

Storge is the familiar love. It’s the love we show to just random people on the street we meet and also associated with family. Sometimes for family, they’re seen as people we probably wouldn’t love if we weren’t related, but because we are we become invested in them. There’s not much risk involved here. Someone could be a jerk, but it’s not the norm.

Phileo love is a bit more personal. It’s when you refer to someone as a friend. This is a love Lewis wrote a great deal about as did Aristotle. This is indeed a much more risky position and some friends you will open up to more than you will to others. It depends on how close the friendship is.

Agape love is often seen as godly love. I would think of it as passionate or self-sacrificial love. It is often used to describe the love of God. This requires a good deal of risk from us because we can make ourselves very vulnerable.

Eros love is the romantic and sexual love. For us, this can be one of the biggest risks of all. At full fruition, it requires total vulnerability as one’s very body has to be openly displayed and shared for it to reach the goal. This is one more reason I think the full expression of eros should be saved for marriage as at that point, one has made a total commitment worthy of the action of total commitment.

Let’s also consider something else about love. Love is not having warm fuzzies for someone. Love is not a feeling. It can produce feelings, but it itself is not a feeling. Love is a commitment of the will. It is a commitment to seek the good of the other for the sake of the other.

That’s hard for any of us. It requires that we put someone else above ourselves. Often when I read what newlyweds say about marriage, I notice something is left out. You get used to getting to have sex, sleeping in a bed together, sharing a budget, sharing personal space, what you’ll watch on Netflix, etc.

Very few if any seem to say something about learning more about putting the other person above yourself. That is a real challenge. It doesn’t help that marriage really gives you a good picture of what you’re really like.

Perhaps I’ve just sat down and Allie needs me to go to the store. I really don’t want to. I want to watch Netflix or read a book or play a game on the Wii or something like that. Nope. Allie needs something so off I go.

But you know, the more you do that, the more you become a better person. It’s almost as if doing the right thing helps you become a good person. It’s almost as if once you stop looking out for #1, you find your own happiness and joy waiting there for you.

This is what makes love so hard. It is dying to yourself. If you do not love someone as you should, it says very little about them. It says a lot about you. Lack of love cannot be blamed on the other person. It can only be blamed on you. Love is not just love when the other person is easy to love. Love is there when the other person can be hard to love, as all of us can be at times.

Our society has often confused that, mainly by thinking love is a feeling. You will not always feel love for someone you do love or are supposed to love. Love rises above the feelings. If you do the loving thing just when you feel like it, what love is that? Love is doing the loving thing also when you don’t feel like it. You rise above what you want and seek the good of the other above your own.

If you do stop loving, it says a lot more about you. Does the other person have faults and problems that can make it hard? Yes. So do you. None of us is perfect. Ironically, the only one who is perfect is the one we can sometimes have the hardest time loving. It’s not because of anything on His part. Once again, it’s entirely on us.

Over time, loving my wife has become more and more natural because the more you do something, the easier it can become. Love has become more of a second nature. As I consistently seek that which is good for her and give of myself, I find it actually becomes my joy. I have often said that if we came into money, I would be more prone to buy her whatever is good for her. It could be that trip to Japan or that horse farm or those dance lessons. Whatever it is. It means more to me to see that smile on her face than any of the things that I want.

Loving Allie is its own reward now. Loving God is its own reward. Loving anyone is its own reward. What am I going to do to grow in the love I am supposed to have for my fellow man? It’s easy to ask how others can change for me. I need to ask how I can change for them.

And to my Princess, know always love is a risk, and one you are worth very much.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

 

Sacred Beauty

What role does beauty play in our lives? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

As an apologist, I have my own arguments for God’s existence. The ways of Thomas Aquinas work great to me. Despite that, there is one argument that I personally find extremely convincing. I do not think I use it in debate because it is a more intuitive argument than one that will hit the mind. I have used it on a friend dealing with doubt before.

That is beauty.

When you’re a single guy wanting to marry, you look around at the women in your world and think you’re beautiful. Then you marry and you realize that you were right. That woman that you have in your life is beautiful. My Princess is a sacred gift to me.

You see, I realize something that I didn’t really before. When a woman shares herself, she is sharing something sacred. I have exclusive rights to my wife that no other man does. My wife is a great treasure and no matter how many times I see her, it is still always new and amazing to me. I cannot even explain why it is that way. Before I was married, I did not understand why the human female form was so beautiful. I have now been married eight years and I still don’t really understand it. I just know that it is.

Sometimes, we will hear the horrendous lie that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. It certainly is not. Beauty is real, and if we miss out on beauty being real, truth and goodness are not far behind. A drawing that a small child makes of a stick man will not be nearly as beautiful as the Mona Lisa.

And yet our world cheapens beauty. Sadly, many women do it themselves. They treat their bodies like common goods and give them away to anyone who meets minimal requirements. One of the best ways a woman tells how much she’s worth is by making a high price on her beauty, and that would be a lifelong covenant in marriage.

Pornography is a great way to devalue female beauty. I realize women watch porn and there is porn of men, but most of us, even most women, would agree that the woman is a whole lot more beautiful then the man is. I still look at my own body and wonder what the heck there is that my wife sees.

In the past, if a man wanted to see a naked woman and have sex, he had to be an honorable man and get married. That encouraged men to build up qualities that were fitting for a man to have. Not so today. Today, a man is encouraged to not be a man but really to be a user. If he wants to see a naked woman, he can just open up his browser and see one in seconds. If he wants to have sex with a woman, he could just go post on some internet site and have a hook-up that evening.

In doing this, we have lost the sacredness of beauty and sexuality. Sex is no longer a great good really in our society. It’s common. It’s just something people do together for fun. It’s not about building up a serious love commitment one has already made and that is exclusive and definitely not about having children one day.

We think our society knows a lot about beauty. Look at all the investment we have in make-up and supermodels and such. We don’t. We talk about it and display it and chase after it, but we don’t think about it. The same is true with sexuality. Our culture doesn’t think too much about sex. It thinks too little. It does everything else but think.

While we should think about it, one thing we can also do is live it out differently. Live our marriages like the other person is the most beautiful one in the world, because they are. Ladies. Hold out for the man who is worth it and guys, honor the women you are pursuing. Both sexes. Abandon any pornography now. Beauty and sex are sacred. Don’t put them on open display.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Preparing For Sex In Marriage

How does a guy get ready? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I had something else in mind to write about, but I saw Sheila Wray Gregoire had a post on this topic on her blog, except for the women. Tomorrow is mine and Allie’s eighth anniversary and so I know that eight years ago, preparing was just what I was doing. This is an area that many men, especially Christian men, can struggle with. These are some thoughts I have on this. This is for the men, but women could be benefitted by reading.

#1. Ditch pornography.

I hate that I have to say this, but pornography is such a huge problem in the church even with a number of pastors. Get rid of pornography. It won’t do you any good whatsoever. Pornography will just give you a false idea of what women and sex are all about. It will also cheapen your view of women as simply objects for your pleasure, which will include your wife.

Your wife’s naked body should be the most beautiful sight you ever see. For me, this is definitely the case. We’re about to hit eight years and I am still driven wild by the sight of her body. Sure. I’ve seen her body several times. It still never gets old to me. If all I had was the beauty of woman and the joy of sex, I think I would have more than enough evidence that God exists.

A great benefit I have also is I don’t have several other naked women in my head for Allie to compete with. Of course, as a guy, there are other women that can get in one’s head from one’s past and anywhere else, but when it comes to a woman in all her glory, there is only one. Avoiding pornography has been a great benefit.

Also guys, none of you ever want to get to the point where you can’t perform in the bedroom do you? Nah. Of course not. Well if you’re watching porn, it could make it more likely that you will reach that point. That is because more and more of pornography will make real women seem undesirable and they can’t compete. There are men in their 20’s on Viagra right now.

If you want help, get a program on your computer that can help with this, such as Covenant Eyes or XXXChurch. Also, get an accountability partner. A group like Celebrate Recovery can also help you with pornography.

#2. Movies and TV shows are not accurate.

Yeah. I get it. You see that sex scene in that movie or TV show and you think “That’s what I want it to be like someday!” Sorry, but not a single one of those shows is ever accurate! In media, everything works together magically and there are never any problems. No one ever needs lubricant and no one ever needs to put down a towel and undressing one another is always so easily done. Sorry. It’s not realistic.

I’d even warn you guys to not think the first time is going to be the best time ever. It will likely be good, but it won’t be the best. That’s because you’re just getting started. More time together will make lovemaking far better and you will enjoy it more and more. It’s a beautiful circle in fact. You two are more loving to each other which results in more sex which results in you two being more loving which results in more sex which….you get the picture.

#3. Get a mentor.

You’re entering new territory. Do not go it alone. When I was getting ready to marry, I had a number of guys that I was talking to. I remember being at the bowling alley with some friends even and their Dad was a doctor and he was talking to me about the realities of sex while his sons were bowling and we waited for our turn. Find a guy you can trust.

#4. Pray.

When the night comes, this is something I recommend doing. Before you have your first time together, pray. I hope you’ve waited, but even if you haven’t, ask God to bless your sex life. Thank Him for the gift you are about to receive.

#5. Don’t go straight to the hotel after the wedding.

Okay. We didn’t exactly do this. We had a limo driver and we forgot to tell him to take us to our favorite pizzeria. What to do then? We ordered a pizza and had it delivered to the hotel for us. Why do this? Because you’ve been exhausted quite likely by a wedding all day. Have a good meal together first. You’re about to get a workout in after all. Protein bars can also be good to have.

#6. Do things ASAP. As slow as possible.

So your new bride comes out of the hotel bathroom and she has that lingerie on that she picked out just for you for this night. (And by the way guys, don’t march out of the bathroom naked with a full salute. It’s not appealing to women and you don’t want to miss her undressing you anyway.) She comes over to you with a flirty attitude ready for you to share your love with her. What do you do? Pull that thing off in thirty seconds.

Don’t.

Seriously. There’s no rush. Take your time. You have enough of it. She spent 30 days picking it out for you. Give her some mystery and wonder too. You see guys, we tend to be ready to go at a moment’s notice. All a wife often needs to do is just quickly flash her husband and he’s ready to go. Women aren’t like that. Women have to be emotionally ready beforehand.

If you go slow, you will make your wife feel safe and not like an object. Treasure her. Spend some time luxuriating over her. This is your big moment. Why rush it? Savor every minute of it. I know you want to see what she looks like under that outfit, but you will. Go slow. Let her tell you when she’s ready.

#7. Bring along anything you might need.

You might need a towel, although a hotel will have that. You might need lubricant. Maybe you need a condom. Whatever it is, bring it if you might need it. It is better to have something and not need it than to need something and not have it.

#8. Make sure all this is talked about in advance.

Pre-marital counseling is quite important. Guys and girls have different ideas of how sex should take place and what it will involve. Go to get pre-marital counseling and discuss these first. You can bring too many expectations to the event that will only lead to disappointment if things don’t go perfectly.

#9. Be gentle.

Guys. Your wife’s body is a treasure. Handle it with care. Unless she says she likes something otherwise, be gentle and slow. Remember you’re not the one about to have an object enter into your body. Keep in mind a woman’s first time can involve some pain and even bleeding. (Also, make sure your new wife has gone to have an exam with an OB-GYN beforehand.) Be gentle. Again, move at her pace. If you want to, you can also make her feel more comfortable by things like music and rose petals and such. Be a romantic. They always like that.

#10. Just have fun.

This one might seem odd, but don’t put so much stress on doing sex perfectly that you can’t enjoy it. You two are going to make mistakes. You’re going to have some times together that will be absolutely hysterical because of all the things that go wrong. It’s okay. Laugh. Laugh at yourself. Don’t go in assuming you’re going to be a master in the bedroom. You will need to learn.

#11. Love.

And the greatest of these is love. One of the secrets to truly great sex is simply to love the person you’re with. Really love her. Really cherish her. Further in marriage, it’s tempting to do most anything just to get into the bedroom, but never lose sight of love. Be loving even when the bedroom isn’t an option, such as if she’s sick.

This woman loves you so much she gives you something she shouldn’t give anyone else. She makes herself totally vulnerable to you. There is a great joy in seeing your wife when you’re out together and realizing you are the only one who gets to adore her in that exclusive way. Love her greatly, as Christ loved the church.

Speaking of which, if you are a Christian guy who is married, engaged, dating, or just hoping to date or marry, I do have a Facebook group called “As Christ Loved The Church.” Feel free to join in. Just answer the questions and I’ll know you’re okay.

Enjoy your married life guys. I know I am.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

 

Deeper Waters Podcast 7/14/2018: Abdu Murray

What’s coming up? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

If we went back a few decades, we would find many debates still, though not as common likely, and all of those debates would still have each side thinking there is an objective truth and it is worth knowing even if we can’t know it for whatever reason. Today, it’s not the same. We live in a world where truth is seen as just a matter of personal opinion. Feelings determine what you believe more and more.

Go on social media and you will often see people sharing stories. These stories are not even checked for accuracy. Many of them have been hoaxes. Some of our government officials have even shared such stories before thinking that they were true. People have had to ask if the Onion or the Babylon Bee can be fact-checked.

This has also come over into the realm of sexuality. Sex has been reduced to something that is more feeling-oriented instead of having a real purpose in society. We have reached the stage where people think they can mutilate their bodies and do whatever to them to match the true identity that they feel.

I don’t know how many times I have seen the story of a person who is married with kids and then leaves it all and proclaims himself a homosexual. Stories suddenly come about saying that this person has found their true self. It’s strange that those stories never work in the reverse when a person goes from homosexuality to heterosexuality.

How do we handle this? To discuss this, I’m having on Abdu Murray. He has written a book recently called Saving Truth. He will be my guest as we discuss it and what can be done to restore the concept of truth.

So who is he?

According to his bio:

Abdu is the North American Director of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries and is the author of three books, including his latest book, the bestseller, Saving Truth – Finding Meaning and Clarity in a Post-Truth World.  For most of his life, Abdu was a proud Muslim who studied the Qur’an and Islam.  After a nine year investigation into the historical, philosophical, and scientific underpinnings of the major world religions and views, Abdu discovered that the historic Christian faith alone can answer the questions of the mind and the longings of the heart.

Abdu has spoken to diverse international audiences and has participated in debates and dialogues across the globe.  He has appeared as a guest on numerous radio and televisions programs all over the world and hosts the podcast Embrace The Truth with Abdu Murray.

Abdu holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor and earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Michigan Law School.  As an attorney, Abdu was named several times in Best Lawyers in America and Michigan Super Lawyer.  Abdu is the Scholar in Residence of Christian Thought and Apologetics at the Josh McDowell Institute of Oklahoma Wesleyan University.  

Abdu lives in the Detroit, Michigan area with his wife and their three children.

I hope you’ll be listening for the next episode of the Deeper Waters Podcast. Please also consider going on iTunes and leaving a positive review. I really enjoy seeing them! Thanks for being fans of the Deeper Waters Podcast!

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Lysistrata 2018

What can we learn about a sex strike? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

As a historian of the New Testament, I think it’s important to learn about what was going on in the Greek word. One play in Greek history I enjoyed was Lysistrata. In it, the women of the communities are upset that their men are going to war and leaving them at home. They decide to work together and have a sex strike. The men wind up going berserk due to the lack of sex with their wives. It is a hilarious work to read.

Apparently, some people today are thinking this is a good idea with the possibility that Trump could place a conservative judge on the Supreme Court and Roe v. Wade could be in danger. There is a movement with the hashtag of Lysistrata2018. The idea is to not have sex with any man that would support the undoing of Roe v. Wade.

There you have it! Feminists are now encouraging abstinence! It’s about time!

It’s really also an exercise in futility. For one thing, Trump has not really been one to keel over and bow to the desires of his critics. When I hear a protest going on, I really have to ask “Do they think they’re accomplishing anything?” It’s the idea that if you get a mob together, the mob should have the power to make sure that they get what they want. Most of us watching aren’t swayed. Well, that’s not accurate. We are. We’re more swayed to agree with our current opinion.

Also, keep in mind that a large number of evangelicals voted for Trump. Many of those evangelicals are also pro-life. Pro-life people are not likely to be in a serious relationship with someone who is pro-choice and even if they are, if we’re Christians, we’re supposed to be waiting until we’re married to have sex anyway.

And Christian men, do you seriously want to date a girl who is open to abortion? This is a woman who could kill the children the two of you conceive together and yes, she can do it without your consent. There are a number of fathers out there who never got to see their children because the mothers had an abortion behind their back.

So what does this mean? It means that the women are holding back from the men who are not willing to make commitments to them in marriage and who will have sex with them without it. In other words, they are holding back from men who are already willing to use them for sex. These are the very men that the feminist movement has railed against. Feminism has often said that women should be loved for more than sex, which is entirely true, but many feminists defend the very actions that allow them to be used for sex and the very people that will use them for sex.

If you really want to be a true feminist, be pro-life. If anything is feminine, it is what makes a woman unique from a man. A woman is unique because she is the only one who can give birth. This doesn’t mean that a woman has to be a mother to be a woman, but it does mean that this is a unique difference. There are many more, but this one is true without exception. Women have babies. Men do not. (I know about the transgender claims. I do not consider someone to be a woman just because they alter their body.)

If anything, right now the Lysistrata movement is showing why these people are not taken seriously. Now of course in marriage, the situation is different. Between a married husband and wife, I do not think withholding is a good policy. The marriage bed is meant to build up intimacy and the relationship. There are some exceptions that I could be open to, such as a spouse having a porn habit that they refuse to repent of or seek help for or a spouse who is abusive.

As for me, I just plan on sitting back and watching this kind of thing happen more and more. It is almost as if the left is becoming a parody of itself, if it hasn’t reached that point already. A bunch of women having a sex strike will not put a liberal on the court. If anything, it will make Trump want to pick the most conservative judge he can find.

We’re entering an interesting time in our history. We’ll just watch and see what happens. Either way, the church needs to keep being the church.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

 

Book Plunge: Atheist Manifesto Part 2

What more do I have to think of Onfray’s book? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

Reading Onfray is a task for anyone who tries. It’s hard to read without thinking that you’re really the temper tantrum of a child who doesn’t really know what he’s talking about. He will be talking about one thing and then suddenly seemingly jump to something else.

In part 2 of his book he talks about monotheisms. One of the first sections is about down with intelligence! Monotheism hates intelligence!

Remember? The monotheisms that are people of the book? The Christians who are responsible for copying and transmitting the ancient pagan works that we have, the founding of the university, and the rise of science? Yes. Those people. They were obviously haters of intelligence!

For Onfray, if you are a man of reason you will be on guard against magical thinking. I was unaware that just saying something is magical thinking is a refutation of it. Who knew? Some people might have questioned the idea I have of presuppositional atheism that if you’re an atheist, your thinking is automatically rational and if you’re a theist, it’s stupid. Onfray comes incredibly close by saying such statements about magical thinking and reason to saying exactly what I have been saying.

Of course, this comes to us well in the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Onfray doesn’t bother to say it’s good and evil. It’s not the tree of the knowledge of science or history or literature. It’s good and evil. In Hebrew thinking, this is a merism. It contrasts two opposite things to say everything between them. What is really at stake here is not knowledge so much as wisdom. It is mankind wanting himself to be the fount of wisdom instead of God.

We also have this part about the three monotheisms. It is the picture I shared last time. We are haters of reason, intelligence, books, and freedom. I say this, by the way, as I sit in my library in my apartment surrounded by my books and if you go outside of this room, you will find books scattered throughout our apartment.

We also hate women, sexuality, pleasure, the feminine, and desires and drives.

I am a married man.

I enjoy being a married man.

I enjoy the benefits of being a married man. I have yet to meet a married man who hates sex and the feminine and the body and such. Of course, such a person could be out there, but I doubt it. I find this especially bizarre to say about Islam since Muhammad had about a dozen wives and his followers could have up to four. Yes. They obviously hated sex and women.

Onfray also tells us that there were numerous apocryphal writings, more than those that are in the New Testament. Indeed. So what happened to them? Eusebius through Constantine is what happened! At this point, it is clear why Onfray doesn’t have notes in his book. Good luck finding this one.

He also tells us that Paul demanded the burning of forbidden books in Acts 19:19, but no such demand exists. From the account, the people themselves decided to do it. Besides, one would think Onfray would support this since these were books about magical spells, likely to ward off demons. Is Onfray upset that these books were lost to us?

Naturally, there is the idea of the hatred of science. The Catholic church impeded scientific research. Again, good luck with this one. There were plenty of scientists doing science in the time and the ones that were persecuted (All two of them!) were not in the Middle Ages.

Onfray also tells us the religions of the book detest women. You know, like how in Genesis man and woman are both equally 100% in the image of God. That kind of thing. Jesus having disciples who were women and openly communicating with them and Paul sending a woman to deliver, which would also entail and answering questions about, his most important letter, the letter to the Romans. For Onfray, we who are monotheists only see women as good for sex and only then when we want to reproduce. As he says “For a monotheist, there can be no more hideous oxymoron than a barren, sterile, woman.”

I wonder what monotheists he is talking to. I have not met any who think this way.

Now while Jews have some statements about women being impure during menstruation and after birth and the Koran has some negative statements, Christianity has not escaped! After all, in 585 there was discussion over a book called Paradoxical Dissertation in Which We Attempt To Prove That Women Are Not Human Creatures. Let’s suppose for the sake of argument that I granted that this is all historical and this is a book that a Christian wrote.

This is still ridiculous. One Christian wrote a book one year and it was discussed. Therefore, this represents the opinion of all Christians throughout all time.

Fortunately, at least in dealing with monotheisms, we have a section dealing with arguments for theism and…..oh of course we don’t! Onfray never bothers to deal with what his opponents actually say. That would interrupt the rant.

And next time we look at his work, we will look at obviously the most problematic religion, Christianity. (Funny how that so often works out that way isn’t it?)

In Christ,
Nick Peters