I don’t know exactly what it is like for you, but I am a 26 year old male and it’s not so long since I was a single frustrated teenager. Since those days I think things have got a lot worse for us guys. To me it seems that every time I turn on the TV there is a semi-naked girl either being used to advertise something, or to motivate a character in a film. In the world of satellite TV it is even worse as you innocently flick through the channels to find something to watch after the UK’s 9pm watershed.
I have needs and desires and although I am a married guy I find myself tempted to watch these programmes and settle in for some titillation! Sometimes when I am weak or depressed it is so easy to slip into something that feels good, and after all it’s not really that bad is it?
GUYS GET REAL! This is serious sin we are talking about. We are being bombarded with images and ideas that virtually mould us into longing for what we shouldn’t be after. If you are a young single guy what is it you are looking for in a girl? For most of us our first thoughts turn to their physical appearance, we describe our ideal look and then just in case someone thinks we are bigoted we add a little disclaimer which goes something like “and of course a good personality!”
Mate I know that in the past I have been totally ruled by what the eyes see and what the mind creates in our fantasy life. We need to get real in our expectations of what God wants for us. FHM and Maxim may tell us what we want in a girl is a 36DD bust measurement but relationships are built on more than that. Do you really know the qualities of a good woman? I know that there may be some jokey, blokey type responses along the lines of being chained to the sink here but have you ever thought about what the Bible has to say? In Proverbs there is a definition of the Godly and virtuous wife – the type that we should be searching for!
A truly good wife is the most precious treasure a man can find! Her husband depends on her, and she never lets him down. She is good to him every day of her life, and with her own hands she gladly makes clothes. She is like a sailing ship that brings food from across the sea. She gets up before daylight to prepare food for her family and for her servants. She knows how to buy land and how to plant a vineyard, and she always works hard. She knows when to buy or sell, and she stays busy until late at night. She spins her own cloth, and she helps the poor and the needy. Her family has warm clothing, and so she doesn't worry when it snows. She does her own sewing, and everything she wears is beautiful. Her husband is a well-known and respected leader in the city. She makes clothes to sell to the shop owners. She is strong and graceful, as well as cheerful about the future. Her words are sensible, and her advice is thoughtful. She takes good care of her family and is never lazy. Her children praise her, and with great pride her husband says, "There are many good women, but you are the best!" Charm can be deceiving, and beauty fades away, but a woman who honors the LORD deserves to be praised. Show her respect-- praise her in public for what she has done.
Chances are you have never considered that passage when looking for qualities in a girlfriend! I know that for many years I never did, until I realized that I was fixated by looks and not on personality, knowledge, wisdom or skills.
Don’t get me wrong here it is helpful to have physical attraction, but it shouldn’t be only physical. Reading magazines we build ideas about the ideal women and we see them in the heavily edited teasing photos. If you set your physical attraction standards too high you may miss the outstandingly marvelous partner that God has lined up for you.
Looking in the lads mags is a dangerous pastime, even the tame ones. While they may not have full nudity and you might only read them for the articles there is still an element of fantasy, not much is left to the imagination. Our eyes dwell and we dream and we begin to look at girls, even the Christian ones, as sex fantasy objects. People call it lust; whatever you call it we’re talking about dangerous sin.
You know the commandment which says, "Be faithful in marriage." But I tell you that if you look at another woman and want her, you are already unfaithful in your thoughts. If your right eye causes you to sin, poke it out and throw it away. It is better to lose one part of your body, than for your whole body to end up in hell. If your right hand causes you to sin, chop it off and throw it away! It is better to lose one part of your body, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.
This statement is from Jesus and it is merely about looking at women lustfully. There is much more danger if we allow things to progress in our fantasy life and we can get ourselves in dangerous situations. You’ve just been out to the cinema with your girlfriend, you missed most of the film because you have been kissing and cuddling in the back row and you are pretty hot and turned on. Before you drop her off you decide to go somewhere quiet and spend some time together. As you are talking and cuddling you begin to reach for places that you know you shouldn’t be going. If your thought life has taken you to this place before it is very easy to slip up and make a mistake you will regret. It’s a situation that is easy to get yourself into, and hard to force yourself to get out of!
It is important to remember of course that sexual sin is not the end of the world. It is no worse than any other sin if you have made the mistake there is still forgiveness with God. We must break the cycle of looking and responding to it. Trouble is it’s very difficult when we are continually bombarded with images of half naked women in precarious situations. We need to have the strength of mind and of character to not take a second glance and to do what it says in 2 Cor 10v5 by “bringing into captivity every thought into the obedience of Christ”
I’m not going to fool you and tell you this is easy, because it isn’t. Even as a happily married man it is something where I continue to be tempted. As a final thought; remember Jesus was tempted and tested in every way that we are and He withstood it. In order to get our sex life in order and wait patiently for the partner that God wants for us we must get our eyes and mind in order.
Read more articles by Robert Allwright or search for articles on the same topic or others.
So much wisdom from such a young man! There was a song out, when I was a youth that said, “If you want to be happy for the rest of your life, never make a pretty woman your wife, get an ugly girl to marry you.” (NOT!) Get a Christian girl to marry you! Her radiant beauty will make the rest of them look like blurs…and keep saying…I only have eyes for you!