And that's something I'm not willing to lose right now.

When people hear the word "celibacy," they make jokes to me about romantic comedies.

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The smallest argument between us would end in fits of rage. The decision to move toward my own personal goals—and away from whatever would have me—came after a few months of going on a series of let-down job interviews and lackluster dates. For me, getting rid of the distractions of casual dating and hooking up was the only way to meet both these ends. By the time I reached 31, I wanted to have established myself professionally, financially, and emotionally.

The relationship was violent, toxic, and completely unhealthy. Since the opportunities being presented to me were just so sub-par, I decided to take a stand: I simply wouldn't participate until conditions improved, whether that was in my personal or professional life. This included cutting out dating and relationships altogether. I wanted to be in a steady career, preparing to purchase my own home, and be comfortable putting myself first after backburnering my needs for so long.

because these are improper for God's holy people" (Eph. In his book , Joshua Harris does a great job of exploring the biblical call to holi- ness as it relates to sexual temptation— on an honest and practical level.

Harris points out that there are some pretty compelling reasons to practice self-control in this key area of our lives.

Is it really impossible to control our sexual desires? In one sense, as long as we have a sinful nature, we'll continue to struggle with sin. "We do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin" (Heb.

The Seattle Seahawks quarterback just can't get enough of his new girlfriend Ciara, and is willing to shout it from the rooftops. PHOTOS: Celebs who love athletes Of paramount importance for the couple is their connection to God, and part of that includes their shared decision to remain celibate. If there's a 10, she's a 15." PHOTOS: Celebrity sex confessions Ciara, who was previously engaged to Future, with whom she shares a 13-month-old son, is equally as smitten with her new boyfriend.

It's only been a month, but I already feel so welcome in this work environment by my kind, respectful colleagues.

The pace is demanding but I wake up truly happy every morning to start my nine-plus-hour days.

The topic raised many interesting and sensitive questions from our readers, including the first one below. As a Christian single, I accept that celibacy is what God requires of me. I've been told that masturbation— while not specifically forbidden in Scripture —is a sin, because I'm supposed to "keep my thoughts pure." Am I supposed to pretend my sexuality doesn't exist?

Try to put it out of my mind a thousand times a day? There are thousands of believers who struggle in this area. Sex was His idea in the first place, and He calls what He created "good." He gave us marriage so that we would have the freedom to enjoy and celebrate our sexuality in the most healthy and satisfying way. Or those who have married, only to lose our spouse to death or divorce?

Everything is unequivocally about me right now—and it's glorious. My friends often note that they can see that the assertive, self-assured Nicole returning.