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WOW!  God is working so much in Kayla’s life this week!  I LOVE IT!  Thanks, Kayla, for sharing this.  I think that MANY, MANY women will benefit from this post.  I can’t wait to see what God plans to do!  (You can find Kayla’s blog at www.lessonsofmercy.wordpress.com)  For those of you who are not married – I believe that a godly mentoring woman or some godly girlfriends or godly parents – or a godly boyfriend/fiance may be able to help fill in the role of protecting and providing accountability that Kayla describes husbands needing to provide in marriage.

We all know that men are visual.  While that is often expressed among Christians as being a “problem” or “evil temptation”, I actually think it’s a pretty awesome blessing.

We really must admit women, that we feel wonderful that our men are attracted to our beauty, and feel incredible fulfillment when they comment on that attraction.  Few words feel as wonderful as hearing “You’re so beautiful.”

I’m not dismissing the obvious battle.  It is hard for a man to keep himself pure, especially with so much visual temptation flaunting itself around.  Every where you look AND click, visual images are getting racier and down right embarrassing. Men have to address and deal with this issue – but believe it or not, it might actually be an even BIGGER issue for most women.

When something is on TV that shouldn’t be, on a magazine cover in the check-out line, walks herself into a room, *I* notice BEFORE my husband even has the chance to.  My eyes are like radars.  And I’m pretty sure I’m not alone.

I’ve always known that visual images affect women.  I mean, there is a race for beauty and it isn’t coming from some imaginary image that magically appeared in the mind of every woman to walk this earth.

However, the dirtier the images get…. the MORE I believe women are actually affected in greater ways than men.  This battle for men has always been the same battle.  Yes – it is getting harder to keep from looking and to take your thoughts captive the more “naked” is acceptable in public;  But what about what is happening to women?

We face depression. We feel deflated that we will never look like that. In all our best efforts, we will never be able to follow some silly exercise routine and come out looking like the girl in the picture…or more popular “pin” on pinterest.  Because let’s face it, if we could get her abs, we’ll never get her acne free skin, white teeth, perfectly proportioned nose, gorgeous long hair and so on.

We live in fear.  We’re constantly pelted with the reality that men are visual, and with so much temptation out there….we’re positive our husband can’t be faithful.  We doubt. We question.  We assume.  We don’t believe.  We sabotage our marriage and steal from it trust and confidence.

We feel insecure.  If the click of a mouse can bring up some wonderful image, how could what I have to offer really even turn my husband on?  Why would I take off my clothes, let the lights be on, take a risk when 15 minutes earlier we were watching the television and viewed this other girl do these previously mentioned things, who is so beautiful it even made me blush!

We resent.  We start to hate pretty girls.  We find reasons to tear them down or point out all their flaws.

We get INCREDIBLY jealous.  We can’t handle the thought of our husband even working at a place where women are present.  We get grumpy when they share stories with women in them. And sometimes we even get mad that our husband is a gentleman and holds open doors like he should for another woman.

We compare ourselves. Somehow we start to believe that our worth is comparable to the number on the scale, the size of clothes we wear, the color of our hair, the length/style of our hair, and on and on and on. (Women have been known to compare elbows for crying out loud!)

Do you know what I think?  I think these images and racy clothes are not hurting men as badly as they are hurting women.  And the more the women hurt, the harder the man’s battle to stay pure, and the more challenges the marriage faces to stay faithful and joyful.

Men know about their issue.  And many of them put boundaries in place to protect themselves.  Women however don’t even realize how these images and dress are affecting them, and so they crash and fall. Miserably.

The more miserable they are, the less they trust their spouse, accept his compliments, believe his statements, and the more they doubt, resent, accuse and wreck the unity that honestly might have existed otherwise.

Practical Application:

Women – are the images everywhere affecting you?  May you have accused your husband wrongfully because of the effects on your own life? Might you be trapped in some of these above situations and sins as a result of what you’re letting your eyes notice?

Name it. Own it. Confess it. Repent of it!

Men- this is really big…. so hear me on this. As weird as this might sound to you… it is YOUR responsibility to protect your wife from these images, just as much as she  needs to help protect you.  It’s team work to keep the level of purity at the standard God calls us to keep it, so we can remain healthy, happy, faithful, and loving in our marriages.

Both men and women need to guard their hearts.

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