Increasing Intimacy in Relationships Without Sex

You may have seen actress Meagan Good in Jumping the Broom, Think Like a Man, or on the arm of her husband – preacher and producer DeVon Franklin, who just recently celebrated the release of Miracles from Heaven.

Meagan says, “It's incredible. It's so, so good. And I'm not just saying cause he's my husband, like it's so good.”

DeVon chimes in, “You can say that reason too, that's cool.”

Meagan says, “Well, I mean, you know, I acknowledge for that reason, but I’m saying it like…It's pretty darn good.”

DeVon and Meagan met during the filming of Jumping the Broom back in 2011. Not long after that, the two started dating. As the months passed, it became clear that something was different about this Hollywood couple, and everyone wanted to know why.

DeVon says, “People would come up to us and ask, ‘Well, how did you get to know each other? And what was going on?’"

Then the truth came out – DeVon and Meagan were waiting until marriage to have sex. As expected, their decision created quite the buzz in Hollywood, but to the couple’s surprise, many were intrigued by the idea of abstinence.

DeVon remembers, “As we started telling our story, more people were interested and people began to really want to get real information that could help them in their love life.”

Meagan says, “What I found is…a lot of people, not just in the world but – that are here in Hollywood as well, that are practicing it that would never talk about it, they're too embarrassed, they thought they'd be shamed or that they're old school.”

DeVon had made the decision in his early twenties, when he began serving as a pastor.

“I wanted to be the same person that could get up and preach and the same person that would go home at night…didn't want to be a liar, didn't want to be a hypocrite,” says DeVon.

He also recognized the ideas that pre-marital sex was acceptable and even beneficial were based on a lie.

DeVon says, “It’s just the mere presentation of doubt that maybe it's actually not as bad for you as you think, or maybe it's actually better for you than you think…And that is…where the lie comes in that we don't need to follow God's plan, that there is a better plan out there, an easier plan…a plan that will make you happier. And the truth is, there isn't a better plan. God's plan is the best plan and it does require a sacrifice and it does require obedience, and it's not always easy. But it is deeply rewarding.”

Meagan, on the other hand, bought into those lies. At nineteen, she started making compromises, hoping to hold onto love. She discovered years later, that it did more harm than good.

Meagan says, “You give a piece of yourself away…you lose the confidence and the essence of who you were created to be to begin with. And so as you go from relationship to relationship or if you are being promiscuous throughout those years, it damages you.”

Those decisions also affected her relationship with DeVon.

“When we first got together I had so much baggage and so much damage and so much pain…We had to unpack it,” says Meagan. “And it was difficult…It was a lot of…pre-engagement counseling where we literally just talked and…we found that for me…I had this deep-rooted feeling of, ‘I'll never be enough for somebody, no matter what I do, no matter how hard I try.’ And it took a long time for us to really get to a place where we got past that.”

After 13 months of dating without sex, DeVon and Meagan tied the knot in June 2012. Now coming up on their 4 year anniversary, they’re convinced that their decision to honor each other and God has strengthened their marriage.

Meagan says, “I've never been in a relationship before where I have so much trust.”

DeVon says, “It's just given, you know, us a whole lot more peace, a lot more understanding…Honoring God in this area He has blessed every other area because when you present your body as a living sacrifice he honors that.”

In their new book called The Wait, the couple shares their story to encourage others that a strong marriage is worth waiting for.

“Because practicing it had benefited our lives in such an incredible way, we felt like we wanted to share it so we could help somebody in their life,” says DeVon.

Meagan says, “Our goal is not to be preachy or be judgmental or tell people how to live…their lives – it's just a ‘This is what we did and it changed everything.’”

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