A married, male friend of mine who I had been spending time training for races with began expressing an increasing interest in me. He was very flirty with all the women in our group of friends, so while I was a little uncomfortable at first, I didn’t think much of it because he was “like that with everyone.” I continued to see him in our group training, and our group of friends also spent time together socially.
As the months went on and we became more comfortable with one another, he also offered to do some work for me on my new house. I also started seeing him more one-on-one beyond just the occasional early morning run.
Things escalated when he came on to me physically. I was shocked as I’ve never been advanced on by a married man, let alone a married man whose wife I also knew. I was flooded with shame as I knew it was wrong, but I also enjoyed the attention. To make matters worse, I didn’t put a stop to his advances.
In the confusion and struggle to handle this situation, I was equipped with applying the Gospel to this situation. I found it helped me understand beyond the shame and guilt I felt, and equipped me to take responsibility in acknowledging Christ.
My Lord understands
Christ is Lord over me and my friend, as well as our desires. This situation was not a surprise to the Lord (as it was to me). Jesus was fully God and fully man. While he was tempted in the same way, he never sinned. He understands my struggle with sin in this situation.
The power of lust
Lust is my main sin issue in this situation. I am looking for love, affection and validation from an earthly man instead of Christ. Pride is a secondary sin issue here. While I started to feel some prompts from the Holy Spirit that something wasn’t right as time went on, I justified our behavior and told myself that it “wasn’t a big deal,” or that I had it “under control.”
A restoring Savior
The good news is that my Savior willingly died for my sins of lust and pride, along with every other sin that pollutes my life (Romans 5:8, 6:23). And because he was raised to life by defeating the power of death, I too have new life in Christ. He has given me his Spirit to help me resist temptation (1 Corinthians 10:12-13). I look forward to my future home in heaven, where there will be no sexual temptation or impurity. After Christ’s second coming, he will restore the universe and sin will be eradicated. What a day that will be for me and all who have put their faith in Christ!
Equipped to fight
In recognizing the power of sin in my life and acknowledging who Jesus is as Lord and Savior, I am equipped to fight. Some practical ways I can grow in Christlikeness and in faith are through confessing my sins of lust and pride to the Lord and trusted believers. In faith, I can set up boundaries so I don’t find myself in tempting situation with this man again (not being alone together, not texting each other). I can have a trusted sister in Christ help keep me accountable, my LIFE Group leader. I can go to the Word for truth, encouragement, strength, and hope. I read the first six chapters of Proverbs and found them very helpful. These specific verses from Proverbs stood out to me:
- My son, if sinners entice you, do not consent. (Proverbs 1:10)
- But whoever listens to me will dwell secure and be at ease, without dread of disaster. (Proverbs 1:33)
- Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
Be not wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
It will be healing to your flesh
and refreshment to your bones. (Proverbs 3:5-8)
- Do not enter the path of the wicked,
and do not walk in the way of the evil.
Avoid it; do not go on it;
turn away from it and pass on. (Proverbs 4:14-15)
- He who commits adultery lacks sense; he who does it destroys himself. (Proverbs 6:32)
*The author’s name has been changed.