As I care for men and receive care from other men to fight for sexual purity of eyes and hearts, what we encounter is the Gospel of Jesus Christ and relationship with the Living God. Avoiding this subject will never produce a life worth living. Facing it head-on with the Gospel of Jesus Christ produces deep joy and hope and ultimately a more intimate relationship with our Redeemer and God!
A mentor of mine tells me that he thinks of the women around him as daughters, particularly any that he might be tempted to browse images of on-line. I thought this was a very powerful thought, but I wanted to add to it what we as men are called to ultimately regarding women in our lives. We are to treat women around us as family – mothers, sisters, and daughters – in relation to where they are whether in actual age or maybe in spiritual maturity. I’ve had spiritual mother types who are younger or the same age as me for instance. Character and maturity, Christ-oriented hearts, inspire a great deal of respect in my heart for women I encounter as ultimately siblings in Christ.
When Heaven and our eternal rest together as God’s children is considered, we’re all siblings in Christ. However, in this life, it helps to keep this three-prong view of women in our view as men. Even non-believing women can be viewed this way from a civility perspective. We are all to be honorable toward all we encounter as we’re created in God’s image. I should be just as respectful to non-believing women as I am to believing women, keeping in mind the testemony my conduct bears to the Gospel and to the Redeemer Himself. As men who follow the Good Shepherd, my brothers and I should treat all women as sisters or potential sisters under the Father God. What a game-changer, right? Imagine if men more consistently did this!!!
Women understandably need to keep their guards up in this life. But, doesn’t it help sometimes to look forward to Heaven and how we will interact without sin? Doesn’t it help to seek to show some of this flavor of fellowship here? Men, we have an opportunity to conduct ourselves in a manner demonstrative of the grace we have received along with our sisters in Christ. We have a daily opportunity to guard our eyes and our hearts, to pray for the women in our lives, to serve them as our sisters, to watch out for all women whether on-line or in-person.
Now, in reference to marriage, the one exception to this mother, sister, daughter viewpoint… Isn’t it interesting that there is one exception and that it’s temporary? This one man marrying one woman picture of marriage demonstrates the picture we have in Scripture of One Triune God marrying One Body of Believers – His Bride. There is One God binding Himself to One People – all who know Jesus Christ as Savior. What a picture that pierces the dark recesses of our souls and brings hope of purpose and eternal joy into our view! My hope for the brothers I care for and for myself and so many more men is that we will get this more and more every day. My hope is that our marriages will be washed by this picture of the Redeemer doing His redemptive work in our lives and the lives of those we encounter. May we view all that we meet with chaste/purified eyes. May our wives be our one-and-only at every level when it comes to eros love. May our eros love be purified by the Gospel of Christ, and may we treat all other women as daughters, sisters, and mothers, remembering that the only eternal relationship to women will be sister, sister, and sister, all looking together as brothers and sisters to the Father God, worshiping Him in awe and reverence, deep and lasting satisfaction, hope perfectly satisfied due to the Redeemer’s death for us on the cross.
Much love, dear siblings in Christ,