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Where Lust Leads

Lust and sexuality–an easy topic. First, a couple of links about men, our culture and sexuality. First, Katherine Kirsten uncovers how our culture increasingly provides easier access to the dark basement of the soul. Second, Mike Adams over at Townhall offers five rules for rule men.

After looking at these articles, I went back to Rob Bell in Sex God where he writes about the deceptiveness of lust, “It isn’t just what lust does, it’s where lust leads.” 75 God created us to enjoy life, but when lust is in control, there is a loss of joy. Lust can lead to addiction and Bell says, “Addictions often rob people of their appreciation of things. . . Whether it’s food, sex, shopping, whatever what was supposed to fill the hole within us didn’t. It betrayed us. It owned us. And it always leaves us wanting more.” 76

But, the emptiness of lust leads to other problems. “. . . lust, over time, will always lead to despair. Which always leads to anger. Lust always leads to anger.” 78 This ties in with what Terrence Real says the connection between depression in men and addiction (in his book, I Don’t Want to Talk About It).

What do we need to do? Bell provides some questions that require a courageous and honest look inward. “To be free from lust, we have to move from being darkened in our understanding to being enlightened in our understanding. And to be enlightened, we have to ask lots of questions about the things we crave:

  1. What is this craving promising?
  2. Can it deliver?
  3. Is this lust about something else?
  4. What is the lie here?
  5. Where is the good in this person or thing?
  6. Where is the good that has been distorted?
  7. What good thing has God made here that has been hijacked?
  8. Have I been tempted like this before?
  9. Have I given in before?
  10. What was it like?
  11. Did it work?
  12. Was I more satisfied or more empty?
  13. What will the moment, the morning, or the week after be like?
  14. Is there a pattern here?” 81

A prayer that Bell suggests, “Maybe the most important thing we can do here is simply to pray, ‘God give me eyes to see the lie here.’” 80 And for any of us that have struggled with lust, we know what Bell means when he warns that it is foolish to fight the “lust” battle alone; we need others. “To be honest, if it’s us against the craving, we will often lose. It too hard. . . And when we give in, it can start to feel pointless. Why resist today if tomorrow we won’t be able to?” 80

There are others that want to walk with us in our journey of faith, even through the rocky and treacherous valleys of lust. Sometimes, we just need to reach out and ask for help.

  1. December 12, 2009 at 5:14 am

    This is an excellent article.

    • December 12, 2009 at 9:49 am

      Thank you, good timing for me to personally go back and look at it too!

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