Temptation: A Shortcut that Leads to a Dead End

Thoughts from Matt. 26:41 & Heb. 4:15-16. This past weekend, Frank jumped on Facebook Live to share some thoughts about temptation. Is temptation really all that bad of a thing? In the past, we’ve traditionally thought that temptation is simply the diving board that launches us into sin, but what if our various temptations and triggers are actually pointing to deeper needs and desires within us longing to be filled? We hope you benefit greatly from this podcast!


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If you and your spouse are struggling and would like help on your journey, please feel free to contact us! Or, if you’re a wife and need some extra help from another wife who’s walked through what you have, head on over to the “Support for Wives” section and shoot Tracey a message by filling out the contact form. All communication is strictly confidential.

3 Ways to Look and Not Lust

3ways-to-lookIf you are a guy and have been involved in some sort of accountability group (like an X3group), no doubt the subject of “lust” has come up. In my group on Wednesday mornings we talk about this often.

Usually the conversation focuses on 3 things:

1. What is lust?

2. How do I not lust?

3. What do I do when I lust?

All 3 of these questions could make for their own post, but for the sake of brevity I rather just focus on the second: How do I not lust? Or, more specifically, How do I look and NOT lust?

But before I do I would like to clarify what lust is and isn’t:

Lust IS NOT looking.

Lust is letting your mind wander to sexual thoughts AFTER looking.

You see, lust is not this thing that just happens.
It’s not spontaneous.
It’s not random.

Lust grows.
It’s in many ways organic.
And it has its own lifecycle.

So when you or I look at an attractive person, we aren’t lusting… but it’s at that moment when the lifecycle can start to unfold.

So, with that being said, here are 3 things you can do to make sure your looks don’t turn into lust (and no, I’m not going the whole “bounce your eyes” route either):

1) Count your “looks.” Around here at XXXchurch, we have a saying:

Look once, you’re human; look twice, you’re a man; look three times, you just disrespected your wife.

Now before you get all legalistic, realize that we don’t really boil lust down to the exact number of times you “look.” But the point here is simple; if you keep glancing and looking, chances are you aren’t doing it because you admire that individual for their personality. Most likely you’re continuing the looks because you get some sort of pleasure from what you see.

Simply put, this is a discipline and it takes practice. But if you are conscious of how many times you eye up someone, you’ll also be more aware of the when the lust monster starts knocking at your door.

2) Follow up your look with an action. Okay, so to be clear, not ANY action will do. There are, of course, some actions that would be really inappropriate or maybe even land you in jail.

What I’m talking about is more of a spiritual thing. When you see that “hot” lady jogging by in her form-fitting shorts and top, don’t just look and let your thoughts get taken over by something unhealthy. Be more intentional. This is what the Bible means when it says to take your thoughts captive.

Maybe pray for her (and not because she’s some sort of “Jezebel” wearing tight clothes—she probably isn’t). Or think about how that woman is someone’s daughter or wife and deserves respect, not objectification. Or just recognize that a moment of decision has arrived and you are deciding NOT to lust but rather to think about something else.

Remember, lust has to grow. You can kill that growth with some solid intentionality.

3) Give glory to God. What? Wait a minute? Give glory to God for the “hot” jogger I just saw?

Yes. Exactly.

The Bible tells us to glorify God in all things and give him glory for all things.

This means…

You glorify God for what happened in church on Sunday.
You glorify God for the promotion you just got.
You glorify God for the beautiful sunset you just witnessed.

And yes, you can glorify God for creating the beautiful jogger who just ran by.

Don’t be a legalistic tool and think it’s impossible to see an attractive person and appreciate their beauty without being some sort of perv. You can.

Remember … looking is not lusting. Lust doesn’t just happen; it’s cultivated.

Next time you see someone who hits a “10” on your hotness scale, take a minute and say, “Thank you God for creating that person.” Then, move along and continue with your day.

I hear so many Christians bemoan about lust and how visual distractions are all around them.

It’s true; you will always see beautiful people. Sometimes wearing clothes that leave less to the imagination. But remember:

Lusting isn’t inevitable. Lust is a choice.

You can stop lust by killing it at the root.

So next time you see someone who’s looking good, remember these three steps:

1. Count the looks.

2. Be intentional with your thoughts

3. Say “Thank you Jesus!

If you do these 3 things and go about your day, you will halt lust in its tracks. Because the “battle of lust” begins where it dies … in your mind.

Source: XXXchurch

Giving Power to Temptation

Temptations are only as strong as the power we give them..jpg

Remember 1 Corinthians 10:13 – NO temptation has overtaken you! Will we be tempted? Yes. Will we give in to temptation? Yes. But the reality is that temptation grows as we GIVE it power. If all we’re ever doing is taking a defensive posture against the things that trip us up, we’ll lose every time. But if we’re proactive and join arms with our brothers and sisters in the battle, we’ll grow stronger than we could ever imagine! As I tell many of the guys I work with: It takes practice, it takes work, but it’s worth every moment in becoming the person that God wants you to be! Fight hard today! Don’t give up the power & authority that is already yours through Jesus Christ!

No Temptation Has Overtaken You

This verse is loaded with truth…to the point that I think few people realize it’s power! Here’s the entire verse:

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.”

God acknowledges not just “if” we’re tempted, but “when” we’re tempted. Thankfully, the writer adds these words: “And God is faithful”. The Lord FULLY equips us with the power and every resources we need to overcome the temptations we face. Looking back on my porn addiction that spanned 13 years, I’m confident that I never really accessed the power or resources God provided to me for overcoming my temptations. Now, I understand His faithfulness and the way out of temptation.

If you’re struggling today with great temptations, remember that God won’t leave you hanging. He’s not interested in your destruction. He wants you to WIN with all the power and resources available to you from His Spirit. The most important thing is that your heart is open to being willing to do whatever it takes to be the man or woman that God has called you to be. You can do it!