The 3rd Door Intro: Sex, Lust and Inadequacy
Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me and lead me in the way everlasting. ~Psalm 139:23
We have spent the last two weeks surveying two of the “Doors” we can leave vulnerable to the enemy. We started with Fear, next we explored anger. Neither of these is a bad or sinful emotion or feeling, but when used outside of its designed purpose they can create toxic consequences. The enemy tries to pry these doors open. He tries to take up residence and illegally squat in a place where he has been evicted. We talked about what may happen if we don’t exhibit control over what is able to open and close those doors in our lives. We have to continually let him know he is not welcomed here.
Lust and the misuse of sex, is the 3rd door we will discuss this week. Every man knows this door. Whether you are 13, 43, or 63 we all fight the forces of sexual impurity. Depending on our circumstances we have tried to create a heavy bank vault type door around lust to “guard our hearts” or just put up a screen door. Either way, they can both be opened by force or by choice, and they can both be exploited.
I’m sure you’ve heard something like “a real man can satisfy a woman.” Maybe you heard it from the male influences in your life, maybe it was society, maybe you got mixed messages about “real men” at church. In any case as males fulfilling that desire became our mission. But soon we hit the wall of reality: remember the first girl who rejected you? You learned a hard lesson that day, you’re not God’s gift to the female side of the species. You felt inadequate. There was a period of sadness, fear and maybe anger. There were questions, “Am I not a real man?” “Can I ever be one? I couldn’t “satisfy” her, heck, I couldn’t even get her to go to dinner. What’s that say about me?” These are real questions and real concerns.
For me combating the feeling of sexual inadequacy was a real concern too. Though my wife and I were virgins when we got married, I had seen enough porn to have set ridiculous expectations (cue the music: bown-shucka-wha-wha). In my mind if she wasn’t as “excited” or eager as the women in the videos, then I must be doing something wrong. I felt guilty about that. I felt guilty about comparing my real marriage to the fake “relationships.” I wouldn’t talk to my wife, my brother, or my friends about it. Let’s be honest other than her, no one was going to be able to help, and I had too much shame to tell her. The thought of me comparing her to these women would devastate her, but I was truly comparing myself. Outside of a few lessons in a men’s group, my church never taught about realistic expectations in sex so I filled in the gaps myself.
When being married didn’t equal “round the clock” sex, I thought it must be me. I’m not satisfying her. I remember telling myself “well, my wife won’t have to worry about me cheating. I’d just be a disappointment to that woman too…”
I needed a way to close this door. I wanted to be free. I had to understand why I felt inadequate. Why did I not believe that for this woman, I was God’s gift? More importantly she was mine! I had to believe that I am what He says about me. I am a Kingdom Man. I had to believe what my wife says about me. I am Her Husband. I had to internalize that. I wish I could tell you that the feelings and attacks of inadequacy are completely gone. They’re not, but now surrounding the bank vault door, I have a security guard that I trust with my life, because He’s already given His for me. He’s stronger than any thief, I knew Him, but now I trust Him.
Today’s Training: Read Psalm 139 as a prayer. Ask God to truly search your heart and ask Him to replace your lies with His truth.