As a high school graduate and now a twenty-year-old college student, for many years I've watched as young men and women's concept of love became completely distorted by what I believe was the cause of relationship's starting too young or lack of knowing just how truly valuable they truly are. I've had friends crying on my shoulder, devastated they gave away the most vulnerable and intimate parts of themselves thinking they were "loved", only to be left picking up the ugly and broken pieces that were left shattered on the floor. I've watched as people that I love with all of my heart bury themselves in meaningless relationships and searched for a love and fulfillment that I believe can only come from Him.

God's design for love and relationships does not include meaningless sex and throwaway relationships.

I think a lot of times, sex is not something we want to talk about. We feel that conversations about sex come with a side of awkwardness and comfortableness. I'll admit that up until recently, I was one of those people who didn't want to talk about it. When someone would ask me my views on sex outside of marriage, I'd shrug my shoulders and brush the question off with an answer on how it was my choice to wait. You know what? It's time we talk about it. God wants us to talk about it! Your purity is a precious gift from our Lord. To me, I like to think that our purity is wrapped in a box. When we find that special someone and on that one special night, that box is meant to be unwrapped for the first time with the person we are meant to spend the rest of our lives with. We can also think of it as a rose. Imagine this. On your day of birth, God places a rose in your hand and as you get older, each time that you have a sexual relationship with a person, you place this rose in their hands for them to touch and feel. For each new encounter, the rose slowly begins to die out and it's beauty begins to fade with the more partners that you have. Now, think about if you kept that rose in your own hands until the day of your wedding. On your wedding day, instead of presenting your future husband or wife with broken and dried out rose petals, you are presenting them with a perfect rose that hasn't been touched. Each petal is perfectly attached, beautifully red, and has never been touched by anyone except for you and God. You've spent your whole life protecting this rose, something special, for your someone special.

In my opinion, sex outside of marriage is a messy thing. Hearts can broken and those valueless physical encounters leave deep deep scars. Sexual relationships don't always have to be a messy and ugly thing. If we follow God's design and His standards, it can be something beautiful, just open your Bible to Song of Solomon and 1 Corinthians 7 where intimacy and love is encouraged between a bride and a groom.

"A godly woman will be faithful to her husband even though she doesn't have one yet..."
Now concerning the matters about which you wrote: “It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.” But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband. 1 Corinthians 7:2.

When it comes to the subject of this three letter word that it seems no one really cares to talk about, I pray that young men and women will seen their value. I pray that they know what they are worth to Him and to the person they love. Know that you are worth so much more than meaningless, passionate sex, and valueless relationships. Respect yourself to know that if he says sex will make him stay, take your heart and run. If you've made mistakes, know it's not too late to turn around. If you haven't, hold onto that sweet sweet purity box for your husband to unwrap.