I'm in an odd situation, one that led me to this forum to begin with.
Recently, I've been trying to use a prayer journal and pray for specific individuals. In that time, I've felt a very strong desire to pray for an individual that I used to be infatuated with, whom I have not been in contact with in some years.
The problem: back then, I idolized and lusted after this person. I genuinely placed them before God in pretty much every area of my life. Ex: he was on the worship band, so I stared at him during worship. He was funny, so I always thought of his jokes during church services. I would be so upset on days that he wouldn't talk to me, but I rarely ever prayed. (I know, I'm ashamed just thinking about it.)
God told me in no uncertain terms that this person was not the one for me, even when I was still trying to hold on.
Back to the present: I am actively trying to stop thinking about this person, and though it's taken some time, I've been mostly successful. I've been more focused on growing in my relationship with God than ever before, and I'm almost always in prayer. I have felt a call to pray for that person, their walk with Christ, their resistance to temptation, finding a community of believers, and so on.
However, I do not trust my intentions. I don't know if this is truly God moving on my heart to pray for this person, or if this is me trying to stay attached to this person through prayer.
If this is God's will, I don't want my fears to stop me--especially if this person really is wrestling with their faith. However, if this is just my flesh, I don't want to let myself fall back into old patterns of sin (lust and idolatry).
So I guess my question is, is this God or my flesh talking? What advice would you give me on handling this situation?
I have asked God for confirmation on whether or not this is Him. I have also asked a family member, a couple people who are more spiritually mature than me, and a couple friends. Now I'm asking for your input.
Please help! Thanks!
Hi guys! I hope I posted this in the right section.
I wanted to share another perspective of modesty culture through what I have learned from the following blogger (I will also put the link below; not all of the article is below.):
I’m going to go even further than that and say that the principle of modesty is the foundation of rape culture and objectification. The assumption that women need to cover their bodies in order to get respect from others or to have self-respect for themselves is what makes people think it’s okay to say that a woman’s dress contributed to her rape or sexual assault. It’s the assumption that women’s bodies are always sexual when exposed that makes people think that exposing _____ amount of skin means she’s there to be looked at or used for sex or that she wants to have sex. And further, it’s that assumption that an exposed body is a sexualized body that makes people think it’s okay to degrade and objectify women who have exposed their body, without regard to the reason for the exposure.
Modesty isn’t just another way of reducing a girl to her body parts. It is the way of reducing a girl to her body parts. The obsession of covering or uncovering a woman’s body is the same obsession. And it comes from the same mindset—that women are there for men, either as temptresses or toys. Either way, her body isn’t there for her. It’s all about how it looks to someone else—specifically some other man. Her body loses its function as the vehicle through which she lives and instead becomes the measure of how others determine her virtue.
And there is no winning!
Modesty teachings range all over the place. I used to get emails on modesty when I attended Bob Jones University. Everything was a “stumbling block.” Pants drew attention to the butt. Skirts drew attention to the butt. nude hose made legs look sexy. Colored stockings made legs noticeable, thus indecent. Bare legs made guys think of sex. The only “safe” option was to not have legs!
Oh, it is such an effective way of keeping women confined. It’s such an effective way of keeping them feeling guilty for their bodies, ashamed and hyper-aware of every aspect of it. It is the perfect method of reminding them that their primary function in life is sex-appeal.
How convenient to put the responsibility on women to be viewed as human beings.
How convenient for men to be told they can’t control themselves when it comes to sex. It’s so much easier to believe it’s uncontrollable and to blame someone else for the prejudice, superiority, and privilege than to admit that one is prejudiced, views women as inferior, and is too lazy to fight against the culture that reduces women to body parts.
But newsflash! My humanity isn’t determined by my dress! Walking out the door butt naked shouldn’t in any way diminish my personhood to anyone.
I don’t have a problem seeing a guy as a lesser person because he’s shirtless. And before we get into the “but men are visual and wired to view women that way,” let me just remind everyone that I’m attracted to women too. I’m attracted to the exact same body parts as men. And I’m very much a visual person in my attraction. But I don’t have a hard time remembering that a beautiful girl is a person, EVEN IF SHE’S DRESSED IN NEXT TO NOTHING! I don’t stop seeing her because I see her cleavage!
It’s time to stop focusing on what women are wearing and take a good hard look at the cultural mindset that allows men to think of women as “less than.” In the end, if, like this guy, you have a hard time seeing me as a whole person, it’s not my clothing that makes it difficult for you to view me as a whole person; it’s your prejudice that makes it difficult for you to view me as a whole person. And that isn’t my responsibility to change. It’s yours.
My world doesn’t revolve around men. When I get dressed in the morning, I’m not thinking of men. I wear what makes me happy or what serves my needs, regardless of whether someone else likes it or not. If I wear shorts, it’s not to get a guy’s attention. If I wear an ankle-length skirt, it’s not to “protect” a guy’s mind or prevent him from thinking about me. I dress for me and no one else.
Show a little modesty, guys, and stop thinking that everything to do with my body has something to do with you."
For more in-depth reading, I really liked this second link, which is a 12-part series. It was so interesting, read it all in one sitting:
I personally don't agree with his 1 Timothy interpretation, but anyway- both are very insightful and thought-provoking and I thought I would share.
By Jonathan BeWell
Open Letter to Rock Bottom
Dear Down in the Dumps,
You are not in a nice place to visit or indefinitely live. I know, I have been there too many times. Since then I have burned my passport and remain grounded, gladly. The local authorities and citizens do not understand my alien presence. They cannot keep this message out. I will explain later. You will not complain sooner. Listen, look and warm yourself up to light versus darkness. Defect from that infected wasteland. Walk this way for freedom!
Before I believed in anything worth mentioning, I desperately decided to buy into "Allen Carr's 'Easy Way to Stop Smoking.'" Heck, he wrote I could even smoke as I read the book! I took a leap of faith out the hole of butts and ash. I actually enjoyed and laughed at old cues to spark a dart. Nic fits were only a fading memory of how and what I used to be like. I had been deprogrammed from doom and reprogrammed for life. Thank goodness, because all drags from cigarettes had become depressing slave wage reminders of death. I could not prove or understand it but I believed it had worked, setting me free. I see that now was a good sign, open door and ray of hope. Major problems had potential solutions. I believed things could be better.
Before I met and surrendered to Jesus Christ, I waged war with myself and the world. I abused my being with alcohol, marijuana and drug experimentation. I sat much of my life in front of a screen playing questionable games. I cheated on God, my future wife and myself with pornography and masturbation. I was living the bad dream of a wicked party scene. My heart had holes, my mind was free for the taking, my body was in ruin and my soul was lost and bound. Mental health issues coincided with the start of all of the above. By my fourth psychiatric ward stay I actually enjoyed doing my time and running the show. Pride, lust, anger, gluttony and slothfulness as deadly sins were aiming to win. It was either end up a casualty of spiritual warfare or be saved by divine intervention. Enter my Saviour, Lord, teacher and protector.
I read the Bible out of curiousity. I thought I should for its major influence on the world and world view. Believing and in it does not change that in any case. Tragedy struck when my parents' dog died in my arms. What I was doing with my life and would come after hit me hard. God had spoken, my deaf ears had been opened. I quit pot on the spot. I mourned Baloo's death and a life I was not getting. I compensated by binge drinking. I started getting drunk in the morning. I was listening to Harvesters FM, a Christian radio station constantly. They suggested AA, Alcoholics Anonymous. I went and got on the sober wagon. Gaming got the boot. Pornography and masturbation were confessed, apologized for, repented from and rebuked. All of the above related to asking Jesus Christ into my heart and life through a simple, sincere to the point prayer. The Bible was now more than history and what Christianity was based on. It was God's word speaking to me, changing my life for His pure glory, perfect plan and purpose. Not the story of my life, but Jesus Christ's death for the church as his wife. It is thee book that's truth never changes as always relevant. Now I am part of the book of life, hallelujah!
Not the end,
Gregory Keith Jonathan Brumwell 2018
Testimony Saved by Jesus Christ as of December 18, 2016, GKJB-1973
11 Very truly I tell you, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony.
- John 3:11 New International Version (NIV)
31 “If I testify about myself, my testimony is not true.
- John 5:31 New International Version (NIV)
7 He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe.
- John 1:7 New International Version (NIV)
Ive been to churches across the modesty spectrum. But I'm very influenced my the church I went to where the women were skirt only. I waver, but I'm thinking of only wearing skirts and dresses because I now feel self-conscious in pants.
1. Are pants immodest?
2. Are skirts and dresses more feminine than pants for women?
3. Does Deuteronomy 22:5 apply to pants and skirts?
5 The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God."
Jenna Presley - From Porn to God (Brittni Ruiz Saved from Hellfire)
Jenna Presley (born April 1, 1987) was the stage name of Brittni Ruiz, a former American porn actress. Brittni began stripping in Tijuana, Mexico while still underage. At age 17 she began receiving treatment for anorexia nervosa, which lasted nearly two years. In 2005 she graduated with honors from Hilltop High School and briefly attended Santa Barbara City College. She studied broadcasting and journalism and worked as a telemarketer.
Brittni entered the adult film industry in September 2005 when she was 18 years old. Around one month into her porn career she caught gonorrhea. While active in the business, she was credited with performing in over 275 films. During her time in the adult film industry, Brittni used crystal meth and cocaine (to try to lose weight), ecstasy, and oxycontin to numb her pain, depression, and anxiety and to make it through the scenes.
After three years in the industry her grandparents took her to The Rock Church in San Diego, where "she raised her hand to receive Jesus as her personal Lord and Savior" after hearing a sermon from The Rev. Miles McPherson. Further inspired by Rachel Collins, a Christian pastor at XXX Church, left the adult film industry in November 2012. Since then, Brittni began working in business sales and studying psychology in college. In a 2013 interview Brittni discussed a book in the making about her past struggles with drugs in the industry and about her new faith in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In August 2013, she appeared on The View with Craig Gross, pastor of the Triple X Church, to discuss her salvation into the Kingdom of Heaven.
Romans 5:20: Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:
1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. 19 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.
1 Corinthians 6:18 Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.
Matthew 5:28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
James 5:16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
Hebrews 13:4 Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral.
Proverbs 6:32: But a man who commits adultery has no sense; whoever does so destroys himself.
Leviticus 18:22 “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.
1 Thessalonians 4:3 God’s will is for you to be holy, so stay away from all sexual sin. 4 Then each of you will control his own body and live in holiness and honor— 5 not in lustful passion like the pagans who do not know God and his ways. 6 Never harm or cheat a fellow believer in this matter by violating his wife, for the Lord avenges all such sins, as we have solemnly warned you before. 7 God has called us to live holy lives, not impure lives. 8 Therefore, anyone who refuses to live by these rules is not disobeying human teaching but is rejecting God, who gives his Holy Spirit to you.