” Can humility and honesty, community and accountability, protect us from the looming consequences, and allow us to enjoy the good that can come from these friendships?
Every relationship — all intimacy — flourishes with the right kind of boundaries.
Patterns of one-on-one intimacy between members of the opposite sex cultivate the kind of intimacy that leads to romance. ” If your attitude about your intimacy is relaxed, it is likely set to blaze.
All the effort we put into boundaries and clarity both honors and enacts this gift — a gift that shouldn’t be prohibited when there are appropriate lines of sight with people informed and involved enough to protect both parties.It’s interesting that Paul contrasts “sexual immorality” with “walk properly as in the daytime.” When our texts aren’t private, our meetings aren’t sneaky, our intimacy not shrouded and smirking, we can participate in the kind of pure intimacy in male-female friendships that is public and commendable, filled with grace and truth.“Love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord” (Leviticus ).What may be a beautiful and holy male-female friendship in one instance may not be translatable to every male and female, and certainly cannot be absolutized to every male and female. But when the risks have been weighed and the rewarding structures have been established, we can, with a clear conscience, come before God and ask him to bless our friendships with the opposite sex. And like all beautiful things, it requires patient investment, open-handed humility, ruthless selflessness and self-awareness, and self-control.This confidence is earned through a mature and godly track record: “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap” (Galatians 6:7). Paul encourages us, “Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality” (Romans ).
Is it because we are subtly aroused by flirting with the boundaries of something that feels off-limits?