Friday, June 26, 2009

Your Star is at Home!

Sporting News Magazine* provides a Profile Page (What you won't find on Facebook...even if you are approved as a friend, they claim) in each print magazine as well as in their daily e-zine. It's usually an interesting way to peek into the lives of a professional athlete and find out some of the daily things they do. They ask all kinds of things about favorite movies and music, to what's on your walls or what do you least like about yourself. Many of the answers say very little, but in each issue, there is usually an answer or two that provides a little bit of unique insight.

However, one question usually leaves me disappointed: Dream Date

I'm amazed how many of these athletes will mention they have a wife and kids, and then will turn right around and mention some celebrity as their dream date. (An ink covered transforming lady seems to be the choice du jour.) Occasionally, a person will choose a celebrity and then name a feature other than appearance as their motivation, but even that is usually rather weak (Such as, "Miss USA, because I'd like to hear how she really plans to accomplish world peace through winning her crown.") Their motivation is almost always visual, make that lustful, and the concept of it being a dream date clearly suggests an evening alone together...I don't need to say more.

This has been bothering me for a while, and then I see today's feature (note, this article is written days before it is published on my is not actually today's). In this feature, the athlete gives the following answers:

Status: Married
What I'm reading: Bible and Facing Your Giants by Max Lucado (He lists his Bible as part of his game day superstition too, but that's for another post.)
Dream Date: My wife, I'm living the dream

I was thrilled to read his answer so I went ahead and read the rest of his profile. Unfortunately, he also stated:

Love to trade places for a day with... Jay-Z, so I could kick it with Beyonce. My wife understands. LOL.

Beloved, it just does not make sense to play these sort of games. Surely, this man probably thinks this is a harmless exercise, for what are the odds Beyonce is ever going to come knocking on his door? However, the battle does not begin when he's unexpectedly approached by the starlet, the battle is already lost when the man allowed himself to entertain thoughts about someone other than his own wife.

"You have heard that it was said, `YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY'; but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.--Matthew 5:27-28
It may seem like harmless fun, but the battle for purity requires a steadfast devotion. (Check out the verses which immediately follow to see this point!) And remember, the standard is not for you to avoid intercourse with some other woman, your call is to model Christ's love for the church.

Seriously, can you ever imagine the Savior playing whimsical games of fantasy about another bride. (And remember, His devotion is not based upon the Bride's faithfulness, for if it were, Christ would have a valid excuse to look elsewhere.) No, Christ's love is an exclusive, faithful, jealous love. He will not entertain even the slightest fancy, but remains wholly focused and devoted to His bride.

If you've fallen into this unfaithful trap, what is a person to do to get out?
    1. Focus on the Love of Christ. Meditate of passages like Ephesians 5:22-33. Then act upon it. Confess your unfaithfulness to the Lord and rest in the forgiveness granted you by the work of Christ on the cross. Repent of your unfaithfulness and ask God to develop in you a heart which is faithful unto Him and your spouse.
    2. Begin speaking of your spouse as your dream date. Ah, you say, that's hypocritical if I don't really mean it. Actually, the hypocrite is one who knows what he ought to do but claims self-righteous reasons for not obeying. Instead, speak and act with the faithfulness you know your spouse deserves. You'll be amazed that as you quit entertaining these unfaithful lusts, the battle will actually diminish and you will see your spouse as your Dream Date.
    3. Confess to your spouse. If you've ever played a stupid "List of 5 celebrities you'd be allowed to cheat on me for" type game (or any variant) with your spouse, you should confess that as sinful and wrong. If you ever playfully speak of another person as being a temptation you would not be able to resist, that is sinful and should be confessed. You begin the process of being faithful to your spouse when you confess the ways in which you have not and allow your spouse to know that by God's grace, you are turning from those ways.
    4. Quit viewing that celebrity for a period of time. Even the celebrity is one made in God's image, so with growth, you should be able to sit at a table and talk with the person without thinking lustful thoughts. However, if you've entertained impure thoughts about someone for a period of time, and it is now difficult to think/see the person without naturally going to the impure, quit looking for a period of time. Are you really going to claim your "right/freedom" to entertainment over your desire to be faithful to your spouse and Savior? Be smart. Give your heart a break for a while while you work on refocussing your affections where they belong.
For it's not enough that your spouse become your dream date, but God is glorified when you see your spouse as a gift from God that exceeds your dreams!

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