Houston native Angela Zatopek recently starred on NBC's Ready for Love, a reality dating show where she "won" the guy and got a proposal. But her stand for "no sex before marriage" seemed to attract the most attention.
The 26-year-old blonde beauty from Houston beat out 35 other contestants on the NBC matchmaking series to win her man: 31-year-old Ben Patton, a hospital CEO in Dallas.
But Zatopek said it was her decision to stay a virgin until she marries that became a major focus on the show.
CBN's Wendy Griffith spoke with Angela, who said that when she first arrived on the Ready for Love set, her dating coach told her that her virginity was a problem and would hurt her chances at winning a proposal.
"She told me, 'I'm not sure how Ben is going to feel about you. Ben is the bachelor because he's looking for a modern-day woman, and the physical is so important for a relationship,'" Zatopek said.
"So essentially, she was saying you couldn't be a modern-day woman unless you were willing to sleep with these guys?" Griffith asked.
"Exactly. Yes," Zatopek replied. "It's sad that women are under the impression that you need to do that, because you don't need to do that to get the guy. I was the only virgin on the show out of 36 women. I'm no better than anyone else just because I made that choice; we're all sinners."
Zatopek became a Christian at 16 and made the decision to save the ultimate intimacy for one man—her husband.
Inspiring a New Generation
Zatopek hopes her decision inspires a new generation of young women to stay sexually pure before marriage.
"They were taking me back to wardrobe, and this little girl who was 12 years old broke through security. And she just came to me with tears down her face, and she just said, 'I just want to let you know, I'm waiting, too, until I'm married,'" Zatopek said.
"She was like, 'I'm scared to tell my friends or boys about my choice.' And that broke my heart," she continued.
In response to Griffith's question, "Well, what about Ben, the bachelor—what did he think about your stance for no sex before marriage?" Zatopek replied, "He was honest with me in that he had never dated somebody who had those beliefs and it was something new for him. But he grew to respect it."
God's Bigger Plan
Griffith: "Why do you think God opened the door for you to be on this dating show?"
Zatopek: "I think God knew that I could take this on because I knew what it was like to be criticized and people can make fun of it. There were a lot of people who speculated, 'She's not going to win—she's the virgin.'"
Griffith: "But you did win! The virgin won. Yeah for virgins!"
Zatopek: "Whew! At the end of the day, I have an audience of One to please. And people can say all they want, but I really feel like it was His will for me to go on this show and show women that you can still be cool and sexy and be in the world but not of the world."
The Chosen One
Griffith: "Back to Ben. You were Ben's choice?"
Zatopek: "I was. Ben is a great guy. Since filming wrapped we have been apart for the last year. Basically, they kept us apart because we're under contract and we can't see each other. Being apart for that year, not being able to see each other, we really got to talk on the phone a lot and have a lot of heart-to-heart conversations. And I just knew that it wasn't who God had for me at the end of the day. I know God has somebody great out there for me, and I still held on to my values. And that's why you wait."
Griffith: "That's why you wait."
Today Angela is happily single and working on a new line of jewelry called The OneLove Collection.
She's also finishing a book about her upbringing, dating and why it's important to guard your heart and wait until marriage for sex.
Griffith: "Why is waiting so important?"
Zatopek: "I just truly believe that through waiting and preserving that for marriage and for your husband, God will just bless you. I just think it's an awesome testimony to be able to stand there on the day that you say, 'I do,' and to be able to say, 'Baby, I waited for you! I told all those other guys no.'"