I Kept My Virginity, But Not My Purity: Part One

Danielle RenfrowFood for Thought, Inspiration265 Comments

For a followup post visit,   “I Kept My Virginity, But Not My Purity: Part Two”

A few weeks ago I got a phone call from one of my girlfriends announcing that she got a boyfriend. I asked her what she intended to say to him about how they will protect their purity. She continued to tell that they have already talked about it and that they are “taking things slow,” and he “values” her virginity just as much as she does. This got me to think about two things:

  1. What does “taking it slow” mean?
  2. What do people think is the difference between “purity” and “virginity”?

Couples all over the world will claim they are “taking it slow” but what does this really even mean? Does it mean the same thing to the both of them? Where do the physical boundaries start and end? Does “taking it slow” mean only kissing? And what kind of kissing? Kissing standing up is totally different and not nearly as stimulating as kissing each other while lying on the couch.

I think when many people today discuss protecting one’s purity, they confuse “purity” with “virginity.” The value is placed on whether or not one is a virgin, not if they have compromised any other part of their body or mind to maintain their virginity.

As a result, in many cases, one is technically physically still a virgin, but has compromised their body, mind, and heart to maintain their physical virginity. Consequently, failing to protect their purity. There is much more to living purely than abstaining from sexual intercourse. Purity is a life style. It is an everyday mode of being. Purity is not a choice. It is an instruction from God.

God created sex as something good. Genesis says He created it for us to enjoy and to reproduce, “to be fruitful and multiply.” This is why He has given us body parts that were specifically made for sexual pleasure and baby making. However, God reserved sexual intimacy for the marriage relationship, and it is approved and blessed by God only in this context. Sexual activity represents a deep and powerful level of intimacy and vulnerability. By God’s intention, the only relationship God designed to thrive on and sustain this level of intimacy, is a godly, devoted marriage between man and woman, husband and wife.

All physical intimacy between man and woman was created by God. Physical intimacy (holding hands, touching, sex, etc) is natural. Of course, it feels good. It is natural for a man and woman to want to further explore the nakedness of one another. It is natural to be stimulated or aroused by the sights, sounds, touch, or even smells of one another. I believe this is why it is so hard to live purely, because it is a constant fight against our flesh, of what is natural. However, we have to remember that purity is a sacred gift from God.

“Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun. And all of this is a gift from God, who brought us back to himself through Christ. And has given us this task of reconcilingpeople to him.”
(2 Corinthians 5:17-18)

When we surrender our hearts to Jesus we share in his glory with a renewed knowledge of God, a transformed way of thinking and behaving that begins to reflect God’s purity, His holiness, His spiritual wholeness.

So, what is the truth about sex and purity? God created sex; therefore, it is natural, but God gifted purity. Therefore, it is supernatural. The only reason we are called virgins is because we have not had sex, thus we have not progressed in the natural timeline of humanity. The only reason we call ourselves pure is because God called us pure. The definition of purity is to be morally clean without blemish. The only way we are morally clean without blemish is because of the blood of Jesus. Through Jesus’ perfect sacrifice on the Cross He calls us pure. Impurity is something that is unacceptable to God. Therefore, by logic, purity could be defined as something is acceptable to God.

So then, are you pure if you have never had sex? Not if you’ve been cheating the system in other ways. If purity was only based on sex, then after I got married I would no longer have to strive for a life of purity.

Sexual abstinence is good, but your purity is NOT defined by your abstinence. It goes all the way back to the heart of the matter. Before you were kissing, before you were holding hands, before you were flirting – What were your intentions? What were you thinking about? What was your flesh saying? What were your desires?


I never understood the value of my purity until I freely gave it away.

I compromised my body, my mind, and heart because I was more concerned about how it felt and what my boyfriend at the time would think of me if I said no. I always grew up with the desire that I would wait until my wedding night to have sex. After college, I started dating a man in my church. We never really discussed boundaries…I mean, why would we? He was a Christian. I was a Christian. No worries there, right? (Newsflash: Christians aren’t immune to temptation!) Discussing physical boundaries never took place until the heat of the moment when we potentially crossed lines. The temptation to further explore one another’s bodies was constant and the pressure was great.

In my mind, I always thought I would never do more than kissing before marriage. Just like all temptations, when we flirt with it for so long, it is only a matter of time before you do something you never thought you would do. I let him touch me in places that belonged to my husband. Lies of the Enemy bombarded my mind. I became more concerned with the question, “How far is too far?” rather than understanding what God meant by purity. We Christians love the already defeated game of, “How much can I get away with and still be a Christian?

I was alone, ashamed and had no one to talk to. I was so confused because I still had my virginity. I grew up in the church and so many of the teachings on purity was about being a virgin for your husband. So, why was I so consumed with the shame and disappointment as if I had had sex? Even though I maintained my virginity, I gave away my purity. It was clear to me that my actions in that moment were not acceptable to God’s standards. When I chose to be impure, I butchered the gift of purity in which Jesus died for. I realized that if I did not value my purity, a gift God gave me, then did I really value what Jesus did for me on the Cross?


I learned a lot about the difference between purity and virginity during this season of my life. Purity is a way life, and my virginity is something I give. What mattered, was what I chose to do with what I now knew about the value of my purity.

I wondered a lot how my future husband and I would protect our purity before marriage, and if I really had the strength to fight it. This was when the Lord began challenging me with the idea to not kiss my boyfriend until he was committed to me enough to be my husband.

My first response to the Lord was, “Absolutely not. What kind of man would even want to be with me once I told him we cannot kiss?

However, as the Lord began to soften my heart I chose to take a huge leap of faith – I decided to wait until I was engaged to kiss my husband. (Let’s get things clear here before you go jumping to conclusions – I’m not saying kissing is a sin or that everyone has to wait until marriage. I’m simply telling you my story and how God chose to challenge me to trust Him more.) I made this commitment before my husband and I were even dating. The funny thing is that God was already dealing with my husband about waiting to kiss his future bride. When Rony and I chose to not kiss, God introduced us to so many new avenues of romance that I never knew even existed. It truly awakened something special.

The choice to protect my purity, a gift that God gave me, began in my mind and in my heart first. Sometimes we have to get to a point where we are willing to do whatever it takes to keep us from compromising.

So, I would ask you – Are you willing to do whatever it takes? Are you willing to destroy any DVDs, magazines, websites, etc. that keeps you tempted to pornography and hurts your marriage, or lack there of? Are you willing to stop talking to someone who continually causes you to lust? Are you willing to set physical boundaries with the person you are with, even though the world would say it is not normal?

Are you willing to pray and truly listen to what God has to say to you in his Word, or are you too afraid to even go there with Him? Often, we deliberately choose to avoid God’s Word because we know that it may say something we don’t really want to hear. Some portions of Scripture can be so clear that it’s almost frightening. Let’s take 1 Corinthians 6:18-20 for example:

18 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. 19 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, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

In conclusion, we must be willing to do whatever it takes to protect ourselves from falling into the sins of our biggest temptations. Purity is now!

For a followup post visit,   “I Kept My Virginity, But Not My Purity: Part Two”

265 Comments on “I Kept My Virginity, But Not My Purity: Part One”

  1. hoopin4.03_17@yahoo.com'

    This was equally encouraging and challenging! Thanks for the vulnerability it took for you to write/share this!

  2. antoniustheprime@gmail.com'

    I really enjoy the concept you have preveyed. I think I agree. I know not only from example but from talking to people , even children of preachers who boast that I’m still a virgin but I do this and this and I always kinda had that mindset like that is for lack of a better term stupid. Its a very snake way to loop whole a system that shouldn’t need to be loopholed.. This is a very well worded thing and it really gets at me in the sense that I just agree..

  3. elanafaith@hotmail.com'

    Danielle- Our mutual friend Hillary Hill gave me the link to this blog post and I LOVE it so much. Thanks for being honest and writing out what so many are afraid to but what so many need to hear!!!

  4. 4mariehansen@gmail.com'

    Thank you so much for writing this post! It makes me think I am not in the world, wanting to keep my purity and virginity for my future husband… My purity and virginity was compromised when I was only 5 or 6 years old with a boy who was my neighbor. He came from a broken home, where his mother moreover had died tragically, and his dad was into pornography and magazines where easily available even to his young boy…!!! During my teens I struggled with shame and sexual temptations, and so when I finally received the purity Jesus purchased for me on the cross, I was interested in living a pure life… I thank God for the way he has been keeping me since that time, always teaching me more about purity of emotions, mind and body. I have not officially been in any relationship, but I have been in situations with guy friends where I have been flirting and been tempted to compromise… My precious Lord has since a long time challenged me to not kiss my future husband until I am engaged to be married!! When I have been telling some of my Christian friends about this commitment, they have thought that I was being too serious… But, I believe keeping myself pure for my future husband is vital!! Thank you for standing for the truth, and sharing your own struggles with virginity and purity… this generation need voices that stand up for what is pure and true <3 Sincerely, your sister in the Lord!

  5. dmfesmire@gmail.com'

    Thinking of printing this for my sons to read when they start dating. I gave too much of myself away before I dated my husband. But God blessed the standards we held to when we dated and we are happily married, almost 21 years and have 4 handsome young men to show for it. Praying they can one day share in the blessing with their future wives! Thank you for your honesty.

  6. terrterr2@hotmail.com'

    I totally agree and will be sharing this article with others. I had a man who claimed to be born again persecute, pressure and put me down because I was abiding by what we had agreed to regarding waiting to ‘kiss on the lips’ til marriage. Surely his attitudes were self serving, and of course, the relationship ended. I am so glad I didn’t cave in to his unGodly pressuring and humiliating tactics (including in the knowing hearing range of my teen daughter) and though it will be my second marriage if God allows, I’m grateful to hold out for that 1st kiss on my wedding day in honor of God. This man never followed through with writing a letter to my daughter seeking forgiveness and offering encouragement for her to like her Mom, not respond to male pressures to compromise God’s ways to please a man. I shouldn’t be surprised, but I am disappointed. Life goes on, and I’m thankful for God keeping me strong in my faith.

  7. cd_jbfoster@yahoo.com'

    I wish I had read this a few years ago. I was a virgin when I got married but I definitely was not pure. My husband and I are still married and we were both virgins when we got married but it IS different from being pure. There was so much guilt and shame in the beginning of our marriage. I wish I had learned the difference to this before I fell into temptation. It has taken me a long time to get through this. I think this should be taught in more churches.

  8. hephzibah.deborah@outlook.com'

    Thank you so much for this post Danielle, it has truly blessed me!!!! There is a difference between being a virgin and being pure and i wish i had known that before getting into some sticky situations in my past and foolishly believing that i was ok because technically I was still a virgin. I’ve been feeling God impressing on me to learn about what purity is, this article has given me a great place to start. I am so excited for the privilege to have a fresh new start, to have brand new beginnings in Christ Jesus!!!

    Much love and blessings my dear sisters in Christ

  9. s_spencer@hotmail.co.uk'

    It is nice to finally read a blog post that I can relate to. It is great to hear someone else’s testimony in this area of purity, sex and relationships. It is nice to hear how you dealt with the situations and the lessons you learned from it. Definitely food for thought… THANK YOU!

  10. hollandanabella@gmail.com'

    I struggled with purity when I was 8-13…until it finally had to stop. Like you, I still had my virginity, but I was so shamed by my actions that sometimes I would sit in the shower crying for God’s forgiveness. Now that I’m older, I have made the decision to remain pure. I don’t think I will even kiss my future husband, like you, because what I’ve done before has caused me much shame. I can’t go through that again, and if my future husband loves me, he will wait, and he will want to wait for me.

  11. charlesdarwin@cj.net'

    This is sickening. While teenage sexual intercourse is of course a bad thing, it is GOING to happen. It has nothing to do with a god, or any higher power, it has to do with science & biology.
    Why would you restrict what our bodies are MADE to do? Why limit it unnaturally to just one person your whole life? Our bodies were not designed for this.
    Shame on you for continuing to fill nonsense and misinformation into our younger generations heads.

    1. cdjme@hotmail.com'

      Ummm, how in the world did you end up reading this article if you are not someone with moral standards? This article is true and even if you believe in “science and biology” you would know that there are many, many animals that only have one mate. If, like you say, we are created to have more than one partner then why do we have STD’s from multiple partners. Why have we had to create a vaccine to prevent cervical cancer, which is caused by having to many partners. This is the problem with our society today. Judges 21:25 : every man did that which was right in his own eyes. Whether you want to admit it or not, EVERYONE has standards, the difference between a born again, sold out Christian, is that their standard is to do what we can to follow the Lords standards. Purity and virginity!

      1. hermanson.timothy@gmail.com'

        I think it’s funny that just because someone doesn’t share your religious beliefs, you assume they have no morals. I’m atheist and quite moral.

      2. wardel11@wfu.edu'

        Cervical cancer isn’t necessarily caused by having too (not “to” by the way) many partners. Human papillomavirus (HPV) isn’t the only cause of cervical cancer, so please don’t imply that a woman with cervical cancer is promiscuous.

  12. davidsmattie@gmail.com'

    Thank you for what you said here and the clarity you used. As my daughters get older and we get closer to talking about this, I have really wondered how to really drive this issue home. This gives me hope that I maybe able to really teach them something important. Thank you!

  13. mariyais@hotmail.com'

    So what a guy who wants to marry me should be looking forward to the most isn’t the chance to spend his life with me while figuring out my quirks and secret dreams and frustrations – but to claim ownership of my untouched vagina. That makes sense. I am sorry you felt ashamed when you let your boyfriend touch you – that is a result of your upbringing and society. So do everyone a favor and stop trying to make other young girls feel guilty when they do the same thing. Sex with someone you care about is completely natural and healthy and the guilt trip you’re sending countless girls on by continuing to spread this message is just sad.

  14. kuksprat@yahoo.co.uk'

    Thank you Danielle. This is really inspiring and so true. I thank God for your life that you have shared your testimony with us and shown me that my struggles are real. God bless you.

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