God-Honoring Pleasure in a Shades-of-Grey World

Even when it comes to sexual pleasure, God wants the best for us.

Dear Mr. Grey

I want you to know why I felt confused after you spanked, punished, beat, and assaulted me. Well, during the whole alarming process, I felt demeaned, debased, and abused. And much to my mortification, you're right; I was aroused . . . What really worried me was how I felt afterward. And that's more difficult to articulate. I was happy that you were happy. I felt relieved that it wasn't as painful as I thought it would be. And when I was lying in your arms, I felt . . . sated. But I feel very uncomfortable, guilty even, feeling that way. It doesn't sit well with me, and I'm confused as a result.


The letter above is a direct quote from the series Fifty Shades of Grey, which has now sold more than 100 million copies. Ana's letter to Christian is just one example of the many ways that women are confused about right and wrong—particularly related to sexuality. The whole spirit of the Christian bedroom is to bless each other. We should avoid anything that causes harm or humiliation, and the sadomasochism mentioned in the letter above involves both.

Christians commonly justify what the Bible has stated as sin . . .

Satan has always had the agenda to confuse us about right and wrong, and he has succeeded. Christians commonly justify what the Bible has stated as sin: Christian couples sleep together before marriage. Christian friends openly gossip and slander one another. Christian wives harbor bitterness and unforgiveness for an offense committed decades ago. Christian women unabashedly read "mommy porn," justifying the explicit sex scenes because of the seemingly redemptive elements: It's a story about healing and about love, they think. It gives you ideas that can revive your sex life.They end up getting married in the third book, so it's all okay.

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Juli Slattery

Juli Slattery is a TCW regular contributor and blogger. A widely known clinical psychologist, author, speaker, and broadcast media professional, she co-founded Authentic Intimacy and is the co-author of Passion Pursuit: What Kind of Love Are You Making?

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