Today marks Part 3 of our series centered on pornography and how it affects women, particularly in the church (go here for Part 1, here for Part 2). I want to make it clear that my dear husband is fighting the good fight and is finding victory in this area. I also want to make it clear that I’m not writing anything that has not been approved, and even encouraged by him. We both agree there seems to be a lack of understanding and help for women that are affected by pornography and we hope that together we can begin talking about the issues of porn and lust in a way that isn’t often talked about. Our prayer is that it begins conversations that need to be had and offers help to women who feel like they are barely hanging on

I’ll never forget that horrific line I read in that popular, Christian marriage book that Brandon and I were told to read during our pre-marital counseling. It went something like this,

”The wife lacking in spontaneity may unknowingly be driving her husband into the arms of another woman.”

Ugh. What bull.

It has taken a long time to reverse the damage that one line made on my heart during those fragile months of engagement. I read that line over and over again, internalizing the idea that if I was not “enough” for my husband sexually then I would lead him to an affair.

Don’t get me wrong, that book had a lot of great points. And the author was trying to show wives the importance of loving their husbands physically, but the notion that a woman is ever responsible for her husband staying faithful to her is a lie from the pit of hell.

This blog was not an original part of the series I had in mind, but after hearing from so many women via private messages or emails, I decided we couldn’t have this series without making this one truth clear for a wife struggling with a husband’s lust issue. So let’s go on and throw it out there.

Sweet woman, YOU are not the problem.

I’m afraid that you may have read that too fast without taking it in. So let me say it again.

You. Are. NOT. The. Problem.

If you have been married to a man who either cheated on you or struggled with lust or you are currently married to that man, you are not the reason his eyes went to another woman. On the flip side, if you are married to a man who is 100% devoted to keeping his eyes on you, you are not responsible for keeping them there.

I have talked to many women who struggle believing that their husband’s lust issue is due to their own inadequacy. I know other women who work their tails off being the sexiest, most spontaneous wife possible because they feel it’s their responsibility to keep their husband’s attention.

I’m not saying we should withhold sex from our husbands or never worry about looking pretty for them. I am saying that we don’t do those things because we want their heart to be fixed on us. That is your husband’s calling, regardless of what you do or don’t do for him.

Sex is meant to be an overflow of love, not an attempt to gain it.

Whenever sex is used as a tool to gain love or approval, we are already losing.

The reality is, we can never give our husbands enough to keep his eyes on us.

For us to actually understand that we are not the problem, we have to identify what the problem actually is. Here are three truths about a man’s lust.

1.God created man to be satisfied in his wife.

This is so cliché, but as a woman, don’t you love watching the romantic scene in a movie when the girl gets dressed for the ball and makes her entrance at the top of the stairs, with her date waiting at the bottom? Or when a bride is coming down the aisle on her wedding day…that moment when it seems like the world stops and the groom is breathless, staring at his beautiful wife-to-be. Let’s be honest, most women love a dramatic entrance. Did you know that a woman’s most dramatic entrance in history happened in the first pages of the Bible when God created Eve?

The Bible says that God created the heavens and the earth, the birds, the animals, the ocean, the sun, the moon…all of it, even Adam. And after everything He made, he declared, “It is good.”

Then the world began operating. And I imagine it was a pretty great world. Adam was hanging out butt-naked in a garden just chillaxing, naming the animals like a boss. But still, despite his high position of authority, perfect communion with God and ultimate freedom, something was missing.

He was lonely.

And this is PRE sin. It wasn’t a wicked desire that made Adam desire a companion. It was a good, God-given desire.

Adam was created to long for Eve.

Which is exactly why His good Father gave him Eve. Out of Adam’s own rib, Eve was created. But God didn’t say, “It is good” this time.

He said, “ It is very good.”

Did you catch that? Not only does our Creator dearly love us, but also our husbands were created to desire us. And God said one woman was VERY good for Adam. Of course, this butt-naked perfectly free world didn’t last long. We know what happened in Chapter 3.

Sin damaged God’s perfect design. But that doesn’t take away from the fact that God’s perfect design is for man to be satisfied in one wife.

Here’s the catch: for a man to be satisfied in his wife, He first has to be fully satisfied in Christ.

And because of sin, none of us believe that we are.

Married friend, when your husband said, “I do,” you became his imperfect, yet perfect, companion. Imperfect because sin has entered the world and we are all under that curse now. But perfect in the sense that you are not lacking in anything you husband needs. All of your husband’s needs are met in Christ, as are yours.

Both wife and husband look elsewhere for satisfaction in this fallen world. But that doesn’t mean it’s because you aren’t enough. It’s because we are broken, sinful people looking in all the wrong places. God created your husband to be first of all fully satisfied in Him, and secondly fully satisfied in you as his wife.

2. Lust points to a deeper heart issue than a skewed sexual desire.

So many times women attribute their husband’s lack of attention to an issue with themselves. You know the thoughts – if only my hips were smaller, my chest was bigger, I was funnier, I was quieter… the list goes on and on.

Newsflash: when a husband lusts it isn’t because he needs better sex or a better woman, even if he THINKS that’s the issue. It’s because He is looking for something much deeper. In actuality, when any of us sin we are looking for something much deeper than it appears.

Here is our root issue as a fallen humanity:

We don’t believe we are satisfied in Christ alone so we look for that satisfaction elsewhere.

Dear wife, if your husband has cheated on you, looked at porn, or lusted after another woman OR if he ever was to do any of those things, can I tell you something? It is not because you are not pretty enough. It is not because your personality isn’t enough. It’s not even because your sex isn’t enough. It’s because your dear husband has a much deeper heart issue.

Maybe your husband struggles with feeling like he isn’t enough in life. Maybe his grades were never good enough, he longs for approval but never feels it, or his boss is always frustrated with him. So maybe that falsely translates to his relationship with God and deep in the depths of his soul he believes God also doesn’t approve of him, that God doesn’t accept him, and that he will never be enough.

A man believing that lie doesn’t go to a porn site or drool over a woman walking by him because she is more attractive than his wife. He does so because it’s an escape. Men are wired to be physically drawn towards the female body. That is a good thing in the confines of marriage. But when a man starts searching for that high outside of marriage, there is damage. And the search for the high has nothing to do with his wife, or even the figure he is consuming. It has to do with a need to escape the reality he believes – that he isn’t enough.

Here is reality: in Christ we are all enough. We are loved. We are accepted. We are secure.

When a man doesn’t believe this to be true in his innermost being, lust becomes an easy escape. And for some men, the “high” of lust becomes addicting…just like an alcoholic having a drink or a heroin addict putting the needle to their arm. At the root these people don’t LOVE the alcohol or the heroin. They may think they do. But in reality it’s controlling them. They are ENSLAVED. And they are turning to the alcohol or drugs because they are escaping something. If only they knew how loved and treasured they are by God AND believed it.

If only men who lust believed how treasured and loved by God they are.

If only we all believed that.

3. You are not the problem because you are made perfectly.

If we did all believe we are treasured and loved by God, we would KNOW that we are not the problem when it comes to lust.

Just as a husband’s lust reveals he does not truly believe he is a loved child of God, when a wife feels inadequate for her husband it reveals she does not believe she is a loved child of God.

So maybe you and your husband are in the same boat.

Here’s the good news.

You ARE a loved child of God.

And you are made perfectly.

Psalm 139 says God created our inmost being and knit us together in our mother’s womb.

YOU are the perfect gift for your husband. How he treats that gift doesn’t change the quality of the gift.

Think of it in a different light – In my 20+ years of walking with the Lord, I have learned many times that God is all-satisfying. Nothing can fulfill my deepest longings other than Him alone. But for some reason I still look to other things to satisfy me other than Him…even though I KNOW He is all I need.

Does that mean that God isn’t enough if I look elsewhere? Of course not! He is perfect. So if I do that with God – an infallible, perfect being – and it doesn’t mean He isn’t enough, why do we as women think if our husband looks elsewhere it’s because we aren’t enough?

Sweet woman, you are enough for your husband.

Pray that He seeks first the Lord. It’s then that he can see you for the beautiful, perfect gift that you are.

At the root of all of our hearts in this fallen world is lack of belief. Lack of belief that God is good, and He loves us. So let me tell you one more time:

God is good.

God loves us.

I’m praying for your husband to believe that. I’m praying for you to believe that. I’m praying for my heart to believe that.

So now that we know we are not the problem, what do we do? Stay tuned for our next blog – Women & Porn Part 4 – We are Not Helpless.

Question: What lies do you believe about yourself? What lies do you think men often believe? Any other thoughts about this issue?

 

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Related Content: Women & Porn, Part 1: What Every Christian Woman Should Know, Women & Porn, Part 2: We Are Not Alone

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