12- The benefits of abstinence

heart If a couple has been in a sexual relationship, it will make them re-focus on how to show love without always resorting to sex...this will be important because there are times in marriage when you must abstain, and learning some self-control will result in a happier marriage.

heart They will have the joy and pride to remain in God's will and grace and they will be able to receive the Eucharist.  The Catechism states,  The sexual act must take place exclusively within marriage. Outside of marriage it always constitutes a grave sin and excludes one from sacramental communion." CCC 2390 .  This means that when we are in conflict with God’s will, we cannot be in communion with Christ, therefore we cannot receive the Eucharist.

heart They will truly receive each other from God. God blesses a hundredfold this sacrifice they offer him.

heart It will make sex something a lot more special and meaningful and a lot less casual. It will teach them a greater respect of this act that is belittled in every way.

heart They will have to focus on each other's heart and mind more and get to know each other in more depth, without being blinded by the excitement of sex. A much greater respect for each other will come out of this!

heart It will make their wedding vows and their wedding night a lot more important and valuable. They'll have something very special to look forward to from their wedding ceremony: the becoming of the two in one flesh. This will make the wedding a lot more meaningful.

heart It also teaches self- mastery and will-power which we need all lifelong. Everyone has temptations, including Jesus. What a proof of character to train ourselves in this way.

heart Another plus, talking from a woman's point of view: it is a great proof of true love if the future spouse is capable of waiting! She'll know he loves her for her, not just for sex!
Click title to read this interesting article:
If You Were Sexually Involved Before Marriage

heart It will be a strong testimony for many around them: friends and relatives. It will show them that love is not all about sex and that there is more to it! They will be going against the culture’s flow and not conforming to what everybody does. It will be again a proof of character and can incite many to follow their steps.

heart When their children become teenagers, how are they going to teach them about exercising self-control before marriage if they have not modeled it within their own marriage? How can we oppose other kinds of extramarital sexual behavior (adultery, pornography, premarital sex, masturbation, homosexual sex...) unless we uphold the dignity of marriage by embracing God's purpose for it?
Several of our couples have told us that they kept their pledge-card in their family keepsakes as a testimony for their future children!

Couples’ testimonies:
“We have found that we can communicate better than our friends who have decided to not abstain. We listen to one another, and we respect each others feelings. Our friends use sex as a tool to “make up” instead of communicating with one another.” Dan and Stefanie.

“We know that we love each other with the dignity God gave us, and not just for sexual gratification. We know more fully that love is not only expressible through sex, and we will be more able to abstain in marriage, when it is necessary or appropriate for some reason (illness, NFP etc), and also to help us to deal with temptations to infidelity. If we can say no now we can say no later.” Mike and Veronica

We have now been together (dating and engaged) for almost a year and established from the beginning that we would be abstinent. Although we are very attracted to each other, love each other deeply, and struggle at times with temptation, abstinence has been absolutely wonderful. We have really gotten to know each other, keeping God first in our lives, and there has never been any of the pressures/disappointments associated with living in sin. Our lives have been richly blessed by our decision to wait until our wedding night, as we have grown in love with each other and Christ. As we go forth into marriage later this year, we know our firm foundation of being abstinent during our courtship will keep us strong, no matter what challenges are thrown our way in life. We have found so many different ways of making love to each other in ways other than physical relations, and we know this will help us during times when we may by physically separated from each other (we ARE both in the military, after all, and these times will come), so that we can keep up the strength of our relationship even during these times.” Mike and Courtney