I’ve only got eyes for you…(and you…and you…)
This week Danica is going to start a discussion on Maiden’s of Modesty about what it means to be pure and remain modest. She and I have been having an email discussion about it. (Keep in mind we have many young ears and while we will instruct our daughters in these things, I’d just as soon not discuss some of these concepts in front of our youngers….as would she.) 🙂
I have copied my most recent letter to her here. Please prayerfully read through it – especially if you have daughters.
I don’t expect everyone to agree with our standards – I mean, DUH, they’re OUR standards. But I do ask that you take it to your prayer closet and ask if the principles I’m sharing are Biblical. Ask the Holy Spirit if you are holding up the standards He has for your family.
In fact, I am not only asking that you do that, I’m imploring you to.
Hey Sis, I’ve got a few minutes and I want to share my heart based on our most recent discussion. There is such a warped understanding of Biblical relations between young men and women in the Body of Christ that I think you’re wise and brave 😉 to start this up. May Father bless the words of your uh…fingers.
One, If we were to view one another as brothers and sisters in the Lord, for whom we needed to exercise care of and concern for – which is the correct Biblical view – our desire would not be to have them like us (for that is a selfishly motivated response) but rather to make certain that our actions were in their very best interest.
SO, girls would be more mindful of what they are (or are not) wearing. The concern should not be for how good they might look for the guy in question, but rather “Is there anything about my attire that would could possibly cause my brother to struggle with lust?” This is not to say that you can’t look nice – but it’s more important that you lay your own desires down in order to consider someone else’s needs.
They need to listen to how they talk about their “other gender” friends. Do they say things to them that they’d say to their female friends? Are they always talking about their guy friends? Are they always hanging on their guy friends? Do they like these guy friends for who they are or the way that they make them feel about themselves? Do they see them as valuable members of the Kingdom – or do they see them as “tools” to validate them and make them feel important…or funny…or pretty…or clever?
I think that: Phil 2:3 is a pretty clear statement about that. (Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;) Humility of mind allows you to look at your brother in Christ and make the choice to NOT wear that dress that you may think makes you look killer, but also shows off too much thigh. This is true servant hood.
Two, the Church has done a TERRIBLE disservice to young women in the Body by not teaching them about their emotions. Emotions are a gift from the Lord. They are powerful and very heady. They are also liars. Your emotions will, if you allow them to, “make” you do things that may not honor the Lord.
Let me be very blunt – what do you think rape is? A man sees a woman, he wants to conquer her and hurt her. He is likely angry – and therefore, because his emotions tell him these emotions are real and justified, then he will act on that. What about the young woman that he hurts? His emotions were a lie and now, she is left suffering from his belief that his emotions were right on target….most likely for the rest of her life. (DEFINITELY for the rest of her life, outside of the grace and healing of God.)
If we operate from the perspective that our emotions are always right and always just, we will justify saying and doing things, generally out of anger, that will wound people – possibly for many years. I’m sure you have had someone say something thoughtless and unkind to you before. THAT was the handiwork of someone who believed/s that their emotions are always on target and always correct.
Having a crush a on someone is allowing your emotions to rule and reign in your life.
Three, I have yet to hear a young lady (or young man, for that matter) say that they had a crush on someone and NOT mention their looks. How sad that our culture has become so focused on the exterior. What that implies, when taken to its logical conclusion is, “Your looks are intended for my pleasure.”
Doesn’t that sound like the pinnacle of selfishness?
I don’t know of many young Christian women who would think that it was okay for a young man to look at pornography. However, I find many young women think nothing of looking at an actor and commenting on how good looking he is.
Christ is pretty straight forward when He says that anyone who looks on a woman with lust in his heart is committing adultery. It’s folly for young ladies to think that just because God said “a man” that they are exempt. What they are doing is committing adultery.
I think Job (31:1) was VERY wise when he said, “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a girl.” Young Ladies!! Pay attention to that!!! IT IS WISDOM!!!! And DO remember what God has to say about Job: ” Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” ~ Job 1:8 Wouldn’t we LOVE to hear the Lord say this about us?
Side note: Young ladies who think watching love stories in movie form or reading romance novels – I don’t care if they’re Christian or not – are not just asking for trouble, they’re asking for BIG trouble.
And for moms who are allowing their daughters to do this – SHAME ON THEM! They are not only allowing their daughter to have thoughts that God did not intend her to have at this point, but they are allowing her to develop an untrue perspective of Biblical romance.
Let’s be honest, if REAL marriage looked/read like a romance novel, you wouldn’t have time nor interest in reading it. But, because you’re married life isn’t as “exciting” as the story is, you allow yourself to fall into that trap. AND it IS a trap. One that is camouflaged by lies – because what is being written is not true and never will be.
Real marriage includes changing diapers, cleaning up vomit and unclogging drains. It’s about serving and dying to self. It’s about being willing to remain together even if he stinks and emits strange noises and scents after eating chili.
Five, in Scripture when the Lord is REALLY serious about something, He says it three times. Let’s pop open Song of Solomon – Chapter 2, verse 7….chapter 3, verse 5….chapter 8, verse 4. What do you see? Yep, “Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.”
Do NOT is pretty straight forward. Let’s talk about awaken – AWAKEN….HELLO?? This is not something that is full blown. When I first wake up, I assure you, I’m not at my fullest. (Unless of course one of you kids come up and stare into my face in silence. THAT wakes me up FAST!!)
So, to assume that it means not to fall in love with someone is an inaccurate assessment, I believe. I believe that this clearly is talking about crushes. A crush is the awakening of love and God is REALLY serious when He says DO NOT.
Last, but not least by any stretch of the imagination.
Your youth is the ONLY time that you are able to fully give your live unto the Lord. Once you get married, you will be required to minister to your husband and then family. This time of youth is the time for you to give yourself to the Lord and serve Him whole heartedly.
When you have a crush on someone, you are not focused on the Lord. You are focused on your feelings, you are focused on the young man and you are focused on how he acts and how you look and what he says and how you respond…. That is someone who is concerned about the affairs of the world, not the Lord’s affairs.
(I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord. But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife— and his interests are divided. An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband. I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord. 1 Cor 7:32-ish)
Danica, Dad and I made some very serious choices when we decided to require courtship of you and your siblings. This wasn’t made lightly and it certainly wasn’t made without prayer and much discussion. Since then it has required a great deal of “arguments” and “defense” against our family. As you know, they mostly think we’re loopy anyway, so courtship just seems to seal the case for them.
BUT as you know, Dad dated MANY young ladies. Several of whom were truly devastated when he and I got engaged. One young lady went so far as to tell him she’d wait until we got divorced. (I sure hope she’s not still waiting…hmmmm…) 😉 My point, however, is that he hadn’t even seen her in over 5 years when she said that. BUT, he had been careless with her heart – and she couldn’t get it back.
There are still some women that won’t speak to me because I married your dad. That’s crazy!! It’s been 24 years. And you know what? I’m betting they can’t even remember why they don’t like me. And furthermore? Dad didn’t date any of them for more than a few weeks. He changed women then, like he changes our bed sheets now. 😉
There ya go, Sis, my “initial” thoughts. Again, I pray that the Lord would work in the hearts of the young ladies who participate in this discussion. I pray that He would work in the hearts of their moms, especially. I pray that He would work in the lives of the young men that are the friends of these young ladies. I pray that He would glorify Himself through you, Sis. Be bold and courageous and do exploits!!!