Anonymous asked: I’m in a relationship, and we’re both strong Christians. We’ve never “gone too far”, in terms of wandering hands or sex. Ever since we started this relationship, however, lustful thoughts permeate my thinking a lot more. I think we respect each other when we’re with each other, but the temptation or distraction is harder to resist when I’m by myself. Do you have advice on how I can shift my thoughts away from the physical?
Unka Glen answered: Well, let’s start with this word “lust”. If you would define lust as sexy stuff that makes you feel excited in your bathing suit areas, then you’d actually be wrong. The word (epithumeó) means to reach a point where passion boils over and you lose control.
You see it’s the control part that’s important. When you made a commitment to accept God into your life, you agreed to make Him the LORD of your life. He is meant to be in control, not sexual desires, not greed, not drugs or alcohol. You’re meant to take control, and give that control to God.
You may not know exactly where you lose control, but I’ll bet you have a pretty good idea of the general neighborhood. And you’re right to avoid that neighborhood. We can (and should) pray for the strength to be self-controlled, and we can do lots of practical things like hobbies, or even use exercise to burn off a few hormones.
But I also explain all this to say that I think it’s important to let yourself feel a controlled passion and excitement and physical attraction to your partner. Expressing that attraction (again in a controlled way) is an important part of any relationship. We all want to know that our partners find us desirable, both inside and out.
And that leads us to our second question…
margefu asked: Hey!! I have a quick question. You and the guys always talk about letting God set the physical boundaries in a relationship, and I was wondering how exactly you tell where God is putting them? I mean, I know it won’t be put in neon lights in the sky, but still, it’s often pretty darn hard knowing where God wants you to draw the line.
Unka Glen answered: Sure, and when you say “you guys”, I assume you’re referring to myself and the fellas from the only podcast that’s beamed… into the FUTURE! The key here is to recognize: the simpler the question, the easier it is to discern the answer.
So, when we go into prayer, and we’re asking God to give us a some direction, and a sense of peace about having the right answer, it’s easier to get a simple “thumbs up-thumbs down” or “green light-red light” kind of thing, as opposed to asking something complicated like, “what’s the meaning of life?”
So in this case, it breaks down real easy. It’s a 5 step process.
- Touching bathing suit areas
- Touching bathing suit areas to orgasm
- Oral sex
- Intercourse (babymaking)
Furthermore, we can look at this list and make it even simpler, by eliminating the last item on the list, as the Bible is clear that intercourse is only for inside the marriage bed (or couch, or you know what… that’s none of your business). And kissing, while intimate, isn’t all that sexual, so if you’ve been dating for awhile, I can’t imagine why God would restrict a simple peck now and then.
So that leaves three yes or no questions, and if you get a “no” you can assume of course that everything else further down the list is off limits. Both you AND your partner should pray this decision through, and keep praying it through until you both get the same answer (And check back frequently, in case it’s changed one way or the other).
But in the case of both of these questions, the main thing is to remember that we’re meant to enjoy some of the sweet, simple passions of young love. We’re meant to be attracted to one another physically, and we’re meant to enjoy what God allows, as long as we know the boundaries, and keep our sense of self-control.
As Acts 10:15 says, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.”