As women try to understand how men think, there is a danger sometimes that we may develop a skewed understanding or maybe a caricature kind of picture. Because we are not men, we depend on men or other sources to help us understand men. We hear messages like:
- Men are visual.
- Men are only after one thing.
- All men think about is sex.
- If a man sees a beautiful woman, he has no choice but to lust after her.
- A man noticing a beautiful woman’s existence is the same thing as lust.
These things may describe some men – particularly some men who are struggling a lot with lust and the flesh. They may describe some women who are struggling with lust or sex addictions and the flesh, as well. Men (and women) who are struggling with lust, porn addiction, or sex addiction may find help at resources like www.xxxchurch.com.
We do a disservice, particularly to our brothers in Christ, when we think that men have no control over themselves, their thoughts, their sin, and their choices. Apart from Christ, we are all slaves to sin. But with Jesus, we can walk in victory over sin – even the sin of lust.
Godly men don’t fit the ideas at the top of this post. Yes, they may be visual to varying degrees, and yes they may face a lot of temptation in our culture today – more than ever before. But Christian men who love the Lord have choices. They don’t have to be slaves to their eyes, hormones, or sinful nature – any more than we, as women, have to be slaves to our sinful nature. Jesus died to give us victory over sin! Godly men can take their thoughts captive for Christ. They can notice an attractive woman without lusting. They may need to seek to guard their eyes and hearts, but just because they see a beautiful woman, doesn’t mean that they don’t want to be with their girlfriend or wife anymore or that they can’t control their thoughts.
There are godly men who think things like:
- I really appreciate how this sister in Christ is dressing in a modest way, that is such a blessing to me.
- I’d like to get to know more about her faith and character.
- This woman who is dressing in very revealing clothes has a beautiful body, but I don’t want to even imagine being with a girl who dresses like this.
- I want to be able to focus on a woman’s face, personality, and spiritual life.
- I choose not to think about any immodestly dressed women I see. I’ll redirect my thoughts to scripture and the Lord.
The Lord holds all of us accountable for our thoughts. Men and women. And the Lord can give His sons and daughters victory over temptation through the power of His Spirit living in us as we abide in Him. We don’t want to purposely put temptation in front of our eyes. We don’t want to flirt with temptation. But as we seek the Lord above all else, He can give us His power over every kind of sin. What great news this is for us all!
SCRIPTURAL SUPPORT FOR VICTORY OVER SIN
God does not ask us to do anything that He does not give us the power us to do if we are seeking Him wholeheartedly.
Something that I really love about the Lord is that – He never puts us in a situation where we can’t obey Him. No matter what the details of our particular lives. No matter what our particular men, family, friends, or others may be doing or not doing. God never leaves us in a place where we have no option but to choose to sin against Him or to sin against other people. He always provides a way out from temptation and always is ready to provide us with the power of His Spirit and His truth to walk in victory over sin and to walk in holiness.
- For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. Rom. 8:13
- But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. Rom. 6:22
- But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. Gal. 5:16
- Do not rebuke an older man, but appeal to him as to a father. Treat younger men as brothers, older women asmothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity.1 Tim. 5:1-2
- No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. 1 John 3:9
Also, let’s note that we won’t see men acting like animals toward us nearly as much if we purpose in our own hearts to dress, speak, and act with modesty ourselves. Our own modesty is our responsibility to the Lord and it is an act of love and honor toward the body of Christ and those around us.
Just like all men are not completely evil, we also can’t assume all men are completely good and trustworthy. There must be balance. We must receive God’s Word and His truth about people and about our brothers and sisters in Christ. And we do need to use godly wisdom and discernment in the ways we interact with others, including men, even men we think seem to be godly. Our trust must ultimately be completely in the Lord, not in people. And we need to guard our hearts appropriately without mistreating our brothers in Christ.
What are your thoughts on this topic? I’d love to hear from you!
The Peaceful Girlfriend – by Lee Ann