We know how the world handles sexual urges, but how are we as Christians supposed to handle our sexual urges when we’re not married anymore or have never been married?
To put it bluntly:
1. Stop dwelling on your sexual thoughts. Don’t replay that movie scene in your head, don’t re read that paragraph in that book you know you shouldn’t have been reading, don’t replay distant memories-even if it was of your ex-husband. Those thoughts will only ignite the fire and lead you further into your temptation. “Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is….”(Ephesians 5:17) understand that He desires for you to be wholesome and to not be controlled by your earthly desires.
2. Stop doing whatever you are doing. Stop reading, stop watching, stop thinking, stop talking, and stop looking at whatever you’re looking at. Maybe you’re not looking at anything of questionable taste, but something is allowing your mind to wander. The first step to gaining control, is not multi tasking your thoughts. Stop what you’re doing and actually think about-what you’re thinking about and challenge it with the truth.
For example, if you’re thinking about all the things you wish you could be doing…say to yourself “I will not be controlled by my flesh (which is the Bible’s way of saying my desires) because the Bible tells me that I should and can walk in the Spirit and not fulfill the lust of the flesh (Galatians 5:16).
3. Put your thought to the test… Is your thought true? Is it honorable? Is it right? Is it pure? Is it lovely? Is it something you could share with someone else? Could you praise the thought to someone else? If so, then congratulations!! Spend time thinking on that thought….but if the answer is no to any of those questions…immediately dismiss the thought and surrender it to God through prayer…which leads to the fourth step. (Those questions come from Philippians 4:8).
4. Pray. Admit that you’re being tempted. The Lord knows and can see. And not only that, He’s allowing you to be tempted. Use this opportunity of temptation to draw you closer to Him instead of trying to tackle this on your own. Don’t be ashamed of your desires, He blessed you with them as a gift to you. Instead be honest with Him, tell Him that you’re struggling with impure thoughts or just struggling with your sexual desire and you would like His comfort to get through it or His deliverance to get out of it.
5. Reach out. Don’t hesitate to reach out to a friend. Call someone, write a letter, get out the house and go visit someone. You don’t have to mention that you are currently dealing with sexual frustration/temptation but just distracting yourself can help you get your mind in the right place
6. Listen to Christian music Turn up the volume and DANCE IT OUT! Release your energy and pray/scream/cry out to God for the strength to overcome sexual frustration and temptation.
7. STOP! STOP! STOP! I just have to reiterate this again because it is JUST that important. If you realize that you’re having tempting thoughts and your mind is wandering…even if you’re just studying…STOP. Get up and do something else for a minute. If you’re alone even say STOP! out loud (which is also a useful technique for panic attacks). It TRULY does help your brain to restart itself, it won’t change anything immediately but it greatly helps you to begin to clear you mind so you can think.
A bonus tip….get rid of the things in your life that are encouraging you to follow the worlds’ alternatives to releasing sexual frustration (ie particular music, movies, TV shows, clothing styles, etc.). In allowing those things to be in your head, it makes the temptation to give in to those things seem MUCH more reasonable. Recognize that the reality is that those are the counterfeits to the joyful experience God wants you to have when He blesses you with the ability to enjoy sex within marriage. And I promise you, this ability to learn sexual self control-will all be worth it in the long run!
Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
With God’s Grace, Love, and Comfort….