Lecher. 色狼. Pervert. 变态. Sex maniac. These are words that we often use to describe people who watch porn or are satisfied by R-rated movies—typically, guys.
But I would like to tell you this straight up: Girls do talk “dirty”, look lustily at guys, and watch pornography. Girls are prone to having lustful thoughts too. Except we do not express them as explicitly as guys do. One does not need to commit sexual acts to commit the sin of lust. In fact, it is subtler for us girls.
We lust when we quietly entertain sexual images in our minds, thoughts, and fantasies.
We may play out sensual scenarios in our heads; we stow away our desires for crushes in diaries; we ‘stalk’ attractive celebrities and post images of ‘hot’ or ‘sexy’ people on social media like Tumblr, Instagram or Pinterest.
Dear sisters, like guys, we do lust. We are visual people who get stimulated by what our eyes see. Being visual creatures is not just a ‘guy thing’. Actually, it has never been just a ‘guy thing’. It has always been a human thing, because all of us are gifted with an imagination.
The Gift of Sight
Seeing is a gift from God. Seeing allows us to appreciate the beauty of nature. Seeing provides concrete visuals for our imagination to work. And without imagination, we cannot enjoy or write stories, neither can we visualise imageries in the Bible (e.g. The rainbow after the flood in Genesis 9; Psalm 23; Isaiah 55… Almost the whole Bible is descriptive, really!). But after the Fall, our gift of seeing and imagination became corrupted.
Look, You're No Freak
Let me tell you something about myself. God has blessed me with a great imagination. On a good day, people call me creative. I easily conjure up images and string together fantastic scenarios in my head with something as simple as a word. It's very useful for creating videos, advertisements, church plays… You know, clean and fun stuff.
But let me tell you the secret part of it: This imagination belongs to a fallen human being. On a bad day, I call myself perverse. I easily conjure up images and string together fantastic scenarios in my head when I hear a word that has sexual connotations. I find myself wondering about how making out with my crush feels. Or how nice it would be to lie in the arms and pressed against the hot bod of that Korean drama actor.
I thought I was keeping a safe distance from lust by not speaking about it or literally acting upon it. But I found that when I indulged in my fantasies, I opened myself up to the world of lust.
From my experience, these were some things that happened eventually as a result:
1) I was so caught up in my make-believe fantasies that it became my escape when I faced real problems. But I soon realised that this escape is temporary, and my problems turned worse when I didn’t face up to them.
2) When I met a ‘hot’ guy, I allowed him to do anything to me–living out my sexual fantasies. Even though it was exciting for a while, it left me empty and disillusioned.
3) I battled guilt and shame about my struggles, and was not able to live the life of peace with God that He wants me to experience (Romans 5:1-5).
I was past my teen years when I finally mustered enough courage to share my ‘bad day’ struggles with one of my best friends. Before that, I had never told anyone because I was always afraid that I would be seen as a sex-maniac or a freak.
But I was shocked when she widened her eyes and told me, “I have the same problem too! And I thought I was the only one!”
If you are starting to realise that you are possibly struggling with lust, I would also like to tell you this straight up: You are not alone.
To read the rest of this article, you may purchase a copy of Issue 10 here.
If you struggle with lust like Brenda, follow her on her journey in our devotional 'Made For More'. You can purchase it here.