When it comes to sexual temptation it can feel like a very lonely battle, especially as a woman. There can be this false idea that women don’t struggle with sexual temptation, and that it is only a “guy thing”. But I'm here to tell you that you are not alone, and the reason that you don't hear about this struggle amongst women is because we are all really quiet about it. It's not normal in society for a woman to be sexual, and if we are, we are considered a derogatory term, yet men are considered perfectly normal. Just because there are not many women that come forward to discuss this subject, doesn't mean it's not an intense struggle for us.
There are many women who struggle with this temptation. Paul even says in 1 Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind”. There is literally no sin that you could ever commit that someone else hasn’t already done. You are not alone in your battle.
In fact, it was a struggle for me for years until I was able to break free with the power of God. It was definitely an uphill battle, but I'm so relieved that I've learned how to handle the temptations of it so I no longer have to be a slave to that sin. As a wife now, I am still presented with temptation from time to time, as I'm sure my husband is as well, but I refuse to fall and give that sin any more power over my life.
The road to overcoming any sin is never easy, but the sweet reward of freedom is totally worth it!
Also: I wrote a blog post called "Porn Isn't Just A Problem For Men".
There is this one quote that I absolutely love... "Watch your thoughts. They become words. Watch your words. They become deeds. Watch your deeds. They become habits. Watch your habits. They become character. Character is everything." I have always loved this saying because it couldn't be more true...Where we want to be, and who we want to be, starts in our thoughts. That is why it is so important to start our battles against sexual temptation in our minds. And that is exactly where you need to start if you want to live in freedom from your temptations!
Determine Who You Want To Be
It is hard to get to a destination without really defining where that destination is and why you want to get there. When it comes to sexual temptation, it can be easy to let shame be the driving factor in our fight against it. We know we shouldn’t be sinning and, out of guilt, we try to mask our sins by good deeds and reading our Bible more. However, motivation that comes from that kind of source will not last long. It will eventually run out and likely have you falling even harder than before. That is why it is so important to find a better motivation for our change.
So who do you want to be? Seriously. Who? Write it down. I remember when I had to ask myself this in the thick of my sexual sin a few years ago, I wrote down that I wanted to be a Proverbs 31 woman, one that loved and honored her future husband, and one that had integrity. That integrity meant that when no one was watching besides God, I would still do the right thing.
Envision the woman that you want your future husband to marry. Envision the woman that is going to raise your kids. If you aren't hoping to be a wife or a mother one day, just imagine the woman you want to be when God sees you for the first time in eternity. Once you write down who you hope she is, recognize that falling to these sexual temptations and sinning against God and your own body is hindering you greatly from becoming the person you want to be.
I hope the person that you want to be has characteristics of Christ. After all, as Christians, we should all aim to look more like Him. So let that be your motivation. This future you. The you that you long to become. The one that reminds others of Jesus. Shame and guilt is never a good way to accomplish your goals. Change your mindset and do it because of the person you want God to create you to be.
Change Your Habits
Think about the things that you see or hear on a daily basis. Are they pure? Are they holy? Do they cause you to wrestle with sin? When I was just dating Ronnie, I called him and told him to put a Netflix password on my account and not to tell me what it was so I could never see those raunchy scenes that sometimes grabbed my attention. I also had to do a social media cleanse where I unfollowed accounts that were too risky, and also unfriend people that I used to have a past with. I truly wanted to be free, but in order to do that, I couldn't have any skeletons in my closet.
It can be easy to lie to ourselves and think that what we are watching or listening to doesn’t effect what we think about…but it does. If there are habits or activities you are participating in during your day to day life that are tempting you to sin, then change your habits and cut the old ones out of your life. If you are used to listening to sexually explicit music in the car, delete that playlist and find songs that aren’t sexual in nature to replace them with. If you watch a particular TV show every night but it shows people having sex all the time or making crude sexual jokes, find a new favorite show and, if possible, block the old one from your computer or TV. It is almost impossible to live free from sexual temptation if what you are filling your mind with is impure. It is not a sign of weakness to protect your mind in this way, it is actually a sign of spiritual maturity and strength.
Ron and I actually have our own accountability partners, and we have shared passwords for all social accounts with one another. We both also have monthly check ins with each other to make sure we are on the right track. You can never be too careful when it comes to this sin. It destroys lives. Do everything you can to protect you and your relationship.
Find The Root
Often times, we like to deal with the surface levels of an issue without really understanding why it is there. Because of this, we are only able to temporarily fix the problems that we are facing, but by digging deep and finding the root of the struggle, we can eradicate it from our lives for good. If you don't know how to find the root of your sexual sin just yet, I would start with journaling and confiding in a counselor or mentor. It's amazing what happens when you begin to pour your heart out- You understand why you are the way that you are.
When it comes to understanding the root issue of your struggle with sexual temptation, it is important to think about when it arises and what emotions surround it. Maybe the temptation comes when you are feeling insecure or perhaps it comes when you are discontent with life. Whatever the trigger may be, when it happens, name the root cause, and ask God to help you heal from whatever is plaguing your heart. By doing this, not only will you free yourself from sexual temptations but you will heal your heart and find freedom in other areas as well.
Fill Your Mind With Scripture
Satan is the source of all lies but God is the source of all truth. When we are sinning, we are listening to lies and becoming slave to those lies. Therefore, we need to memorize scripture so that when those lies arise, we have the power to put them back in their place. I mean, just think about it for a second... if you know someone is lying, you are not going to believe them but if you aren’t sure if they are lying, then you will likely let their words influence you. This is the same with sin, if we do not have truth at the ready, we are likely going to allow Satan’s lies to influence us. So find some Bible verses that help you fight your struggle against sexual temptation and memorize them so that you always have truth ready and sitting in your back pocket.
Accountability Is Key
There is something miraculously freeing about confessing our sins to others. God really knew what He was doing when He commanded us to be open and confess our sins with the Church. He knows that the confession of our sin is the only way to be completely set free from the burdens of our sins. When we tell close friends about our struggles, it lightens our hearts and takes away the power of Satan’s lies. When you tell the right people, you will find that their love for you does not change, they do not have a lesser opinion of you, and they are armed and ready to help you fight the temptations you face. Rather than thinking of this as a scary thing, think about it as an opportunity to deepen your friendships and grow in freedom.
When I asked my friend if she would make sure that sin was no longer in my life periodically, she was so encouraging. She told me that she had an accountability partner as well because the sin used to be in her life. I felt so understood and so seen. We now fight this thing together, and really do walk in freedom.
There is an element of simply growing up when it comes to this sin. It is a huge pitfall for so many people, but we don't need to give it that much power. We have the spirit of the One who raised Christ from the dead living inside of us. If He could conquer death, there is nothing He can't conquer now! We have to put our childish ways behind us, press ahead, and trust in the working power of God.
Know that whatever you may face, God is with you and He will always love you, no matter how far you think you have gone. He wants you to have freedom from sexual temptation and He is fighting your battles with you. The second part of 1 Corinthians 10:13 says “And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it”. God will always provide a way out for you, He will never leave you to your own devices. There is freedom and if you pursue it, you will find it!