My favorite wooden spoon and sexual purity

I have a wooden kitchen utensil that’s not exactly a spoon because what ought to be the bowl of a spoon is just flat across.  Other than that, it’s exactly a wooden spoon.  I love this thing because when I mix cookie dough, the shortening/flour/butter mixture doesn’t “glop up” in the bowl of the spoon since it’s flat.  I have never seen another one like it – it was a gift – I have no idea where to get another one.  I would hate to lose it. 

It reminds me of sexual purity in some ways.  (I know this is corny, but it does make a couple of points pretty well.)  So, please, just let the little Oklahoma boy be corny. 

I didn’t know what the thing was for, but when I found out, I was delighted

The friend who gave it to me said “you’ll figure something out”.  And he was right.  I found out it scraped the bowl and didn’t pocket unmixed flour and was the best flour-cutter-inner I’ve ever seen.  But until I used it, I didn’t know.  In a way, I had no possibility of knowing what it was for until I actually used it. 

The same thing is true of sexual purity.  When I converted to Christianity, I did my best to give up sex, and that was what I thought chastity was — giving up sex outside marriage.  But chastity is way more than giving up sex.  Giving up sex outside marriage is just the beginning.  (Do notice, however, it is the beginning.)  

It took a while, but as I got further into chastity, I stopped looking at half the people I met as potential sex partners.  After a longer period I even began to stop viewing pictures of good-looking people as fantasy sex partners.  In other words, chastity gave me the gift of looking at people as people.  It let me approach them on the level of humanity, rather than biology. 

I stopped being a consumer of people on a physical level and I began the journey of becoming a lover of people on a human level.  That’s huge.  

You don’t have to be a Christian to know it is good not to view people as something to be consumed, as objects.  Yet, maybe you have to be chaste in order to realize that chastity is how you prevent such a horrible form of consumption. 

Now that I have this spoon thing, I take good care of it since I’m not sure I could replace it

I don’t leave the wooden spoon thing in the sink.  Being wet isn’t good for the wood.  And I don’t use it for anything but baking.  Furthermore, when the dough is pretty thick, I’m careful about how much stress I put on the handle.  Wooden handles can snap.  

Now that I am chaste, I guard my chastity.  Pornography is deeply alluring to me for some reason.  You probably haven’t noticed (hah!), but a guy is two or three clicks away from online pornography at any time.  But I guard my chastity.  I make sure I do not “flirt” with soft-core stuff online.  I avoid TV that glorifies sexuality, not because I’m some sort of church lady who is “shocked, just shocked”, but because I know how weak I am.  I know I have failed in sexual matters before.  

My chastity was hard to win.  It cost me much, I suffered for it, and I will not treat it like something cheap or disposable.  It is precious and, who knows, I might not be able to replace it next time. 

It replaced every other spoon in the drawer

I bake something every week.  The wooden spoon thing is the only spoon I use.  It’s that good.  I guess it’s kind of silly, but I get a minor sort of pleasure just handling the spoon and seeing how well it does what it does. 

Same thing with chastity.  It does what it does awfully well.  Here’s a Bible verse from Colossians 3: “Set your mind on the things above, not on the things on the earth”.  That instruction includes not loving money, avoiding personal ambition for power, and it also includes sex outside marriage.  My personal experience is that sexual purity makes the other disciplines a bit easier, too.  There’s just something about sexual self-control that is almost existential in its significance.  You know that’s true just by looking at how the marketers use sex to sell cars and toothbrushes and hamburgers and beer – I mean, what does sex have to do with hamburgers?  But if they can associate sexuality with the product, they know you’re more likely to buy it. 

And it works the other way, too.  If you can divorce yourself from sexual sin, really and honestly the other virtues get a little easier, too

Please consider chastity as a Christian lifestyle

Please consider the possibility that God knows more about what makes you happy than even you do.  Through both Scripture and the Church, God has always required sexual purity from his people.  He has always required that human sex exist only within the structure of marriage.  He doesn’t do this to shut down the party.  He does it to maximize the happiness of his people and to strengthen the family (which in turn strengthens society). 

Can you honestly say that the sexual revolution of the 1960’s and the developments many associate with it (STD’s, more divorce, media saturation with sexuality, casual acceptance of contraception, abortion, serial sex partners) – can you honestly say this has increased the happiness and stability of Western societies?  The moral issues with these developments are staggering, but all I’m asking here is whether you could even argue that people are happier because of them.

2 thoughts on “My favorite wooden spoon and sexual purity

  1. Thanks, Rebecca. It just seems conversion in general and chastity in particular are hardly ever considered as alternative “strategies” for happiness anymore.
    Thanks, too, for your contributions to CatholicDaily. It’s great to be here, isn’t it?!

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