True Love Waits

from by Tom Smith

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I find the True Love Waits movement to be an exercise in denial. The idea is "challenging teenagers and college students to make a commitment to sexual abstinence until marriage... encourag[ing] moral purity by adhering to biblical principles... utiliz[ing] positive peer pressure by encouraging those who make a commitment to refrain from pre-marital sex to challenge their peers to do the same."

I feel the philosophy behind this has a great deal of merit on several levels. There is no denying that the surest way to avoid pregnancy and STDs is to not fool around. Unfortunately, there's this little thing called reality. In the first place, humans are hard-wired to have and enjoy sexual contact. A lot. Like, more than almost anything, shy of breathing. Still, many people can control themselves. But there are other problems. The methodology insists on pretty much no alternative sex education -- they don't teach you about prophylactics, STIs, etc., because, after all, you're abstaining from sex and therefore don't need to worry about them, right? Not to mention that, apparently, many of the young people who enter into the commitment [a] flat-out lie about it, [b] sincerely mean it but break it later, and/or [c] don't think oral or anal sex "count".

I tried to do the same tightrope walk with this song that I did with "Happy Conception Day". Please let me know how it works.

And, yes, when I first heard the phrase "true love waits" about six years ago, my first thought was a Tom Waits style riff. As with the Dr. John riff of "Neckbolt Love", I figured hinting at how Waits sings would work much better than trying to actually do his unique gravelly bass for a seven-minute song.

lyrics

There's a building on the corner,
You know it's the House of God.
And the man inside says makin' love is wrong
And nobody finds that odd.

'Cause he's never made love in his lifetime,
He's never been held in the night,
He's never shared laughter or tears in the arms
Of the one who could make it all right.

His God is his comfort, his God is his shield,
Against all temptation to which he might yield,
And he never wonders why God gave him flesh
whose desires lead him so far afield?

He's never imagined it otherwise,
And pleasure ain't part of the plan,
And true love waits for the faithful
To be more than a woman and man.

They tell all the young men and women
To give themselves over to God,
For the Kingdom of Heaven awaits you
If down the right path you have trod.

And knowledge denies what we're sure of,
And faith is a beautiful thing,
And everything's suddenly different when
She slips on his wedding ring.

Their God is their comfort, their God is their cause,
Their God's more important than reason or laws,
And they never wonder why God makes them wait,
The purpose behind the pause.

Their own feelings aren't as important
As pleasing the man up above,
And true love waits for the faithful
To show that they're greater than love.

It don't matter what all the facts are,
'Cause facts are from secular schools
And God in his Heaven will love and protect you
So long as you follow the rules.

The next life is gonna be better,
As long as you answer the call,
Amidst all this thunder I can't help but wonder
Why bother with this life at all?

There's a million young men and women
Who've promised themselves to the Lord.
They know sex distracts you from thinkin' 'bout Gabriel
Wielding his mighty sword.

And their destinies lie before them,
To be the best husbands and wives,
They only need stifle the instincts God gave them
The rest of their natural lives.

Their God is their pillar, their God is their rock,
Their God is their shepherd, and they are the flock,
And they never wonder why God makes them do things
The rest of the world will mock.

And denial is a river in Egypt,
And all the best people abstain,
And true love waits for the faithful
To learn how to live with the pain.

And those who may falter aren't worthy
They've failed themselves and their kin,
And true love waits for the virtuous,
Who've never committed a sin.

And what you believe's more important
Than truth that might get in the way,
And true love waits for the righteous
To go up to Heaven one day.

credits

from iTom 3​.​0: True Love Waits, released May 11, 2007

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Tom Smith Ann Arbor

Weird Al with more books, JoCo with more jokes, Carlin with more Cthulhu. Since 1985, Tom Smith has been breaking hearts, minds, and laws of propriety and physics with his insane blend of sf/fantasy, Life With Computers, pop culture, politics, and puns. More than twenty albums later, he maintains the best is yet to come. ... more

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