We have all heard various phrases about opposites such as, "that's like oil and water." Lust and love are polar opposites, much like oil and water. The origin of lust is our own self. Love, on the other hand, not only comes from God, it is God.
When we lust, we are moving in the opposite direction of God. We take a woman and reduce her to an image or object. We depersonalize her for our consumption. A loving behavior is to expand her by seeing her as God's child, a wife, mother and friend. Love expands who she is. Lust reduces her.
You can always tell which direction you are going with a woman by how you are expanding or reducing her. You can always grade where you are with lust and love anytime by using this guideline. Simply ask yourself if you are reducing or expanding her. Once you have your answer, you know whether or not you are living a lust-free lifestyle. Practice this when you are out and about publicly. To become loving will lead you to become and stay lust-free your entire life.
One thing I have noticed about men is that they see windows of opportunity everywhere. They see them in business, getting praise and even in lusting.
It's true that some women make it easier to objectify them by the way they dress. However, lust is always our choice and responsibility. Lust will highlight the fact that there's "opportunity."
Lust uses opportunity because men like opportunity. When we capitalize on opportunity in other areas of life, we feel a sense of accomplishment. However, when we follow the lies of lust, we will do something. This "something" will bring harm to us, and later, guilt and shame.
The real opportunity to be lust-free is to see a woman as a daughter of God. Begin to pray for her, yourself, and your wife and kids. Make an accountability call when lust highlights an opportunity and you will win. At that point you will have done something good, something you won't later regret. You will feel the confidence that comes from accomplishment. All opportunities are times to live lust-free. It's your choice.
Going back to the Garden of Eden, we realize that lust can be very sneaky. Lust tells you every woman is potentially yours and because of that, you are allowed to inspect and assess any woman you want. Lust makes you believe women in general are yours to do with as you please.
The truth is that only one woman is yours, and that's your wife (or future wife). For most men, God has or will give you one woman as an inheritance. She is yours to bless, maintain, protect and provide for. She is the jewel in your proverbial crown.
This truth means that no other woman, real or imagined, is yours. Other women are God's first and they were made for His glory, regardless of whether they act in accordance with this truth.
In most cases, each woman will eventually become another man's wife. That woman is some other man's inheritance. She is not yours to objectify, lust after or to view her image for the purpose of lust. She is not yours to behold. Simply put, God has not given you permission to lust after another man's inheritance.
Doug Weiss, Ph.D., is a nationally known author, speaker and licensed psychologist. He is the executive director of Heart to Heart Counseling Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and the author of several books including, Lust Free Living. You may contact Dr. Weiss via his website, drdougweiss.com or on his Facebook, by phone at 719-278-3708 or through email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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