I cannot dance. Seriously, ask any of my high school friends how good of a dancer I am and I promise they will all laugh, especially when it comes to freestyle. I’m pretty sure I did the sprinkler at my senior prom.
So when I found out that we had dance fitness (formerly known as Zumba) at my college for free, I was super excited. I can at least functionally do choreographed dance moves, and most of the other Dutch girls could move about the same as myself.
Along with having a great time working up a sweat doing fun dance moves, we have an amazing instructor. Jenna is an extremely fit, godly mother of three kids. She is not only a really great and encouraging dance instructor, but she likes to give us really great (sometimes uncomfortable) advice on female matters. She talks about her kids’ puberty issues, her gynecologist, and sex very openly. A few weeks ago, she talked to us about the frequently asked question “how far is too far?” She talked about how she dated a guy for six years before her husband, and although they hadn’t slept together, they did some things that don’t make her super proud. She also talked about how it was hard for her to “flip the switch” when she got married.
The switch? What’s the switch? I have only heard about this so called “switch” for a few months. It refers to the mental change from being in a relationship to being married, the switch from telling yourself “no” when it comes to sex to suddenly saying “yes” and being expected to love it. Because Jenna spent time engaging in activities that were questionable, she often had to say “no” before things went too far. When she got married, she had to spend a lot of time changing the thoughts in her head when she was with her husband.
This topic could go a lot of different ways. Like putting physical restrictions on your relationships, being careful who you give parts of your heart to, and even discussing how far IS too far.
But this topic brought up a different thought bubble for me …
Facebook is covered with posts about how girls should not be kicked out of schools for having short shorts. Blogs circulate encouraging women to wear whatever kind of bathing suits they want as long as they are comfortable. While these posts imply that men should be trained not to look at women like objects and learn how to block out their surroundings, they also imply that the weight of having a pure mind and pure eyes rests entirely on their shoulders.
I used to agree with such posts.
As a freshman in high school I was 5’11. Wearing shorts to school was pretty much not an option for me. Who makes mom shorts for 16-year-old girls? I settled on capris. I couldn’t help but think about how unfair it was that I had to suffer in my longer pants just so guys could “focus in school.” Now that I’m in college I can understand both perspectives…
Males and females have different hormones in their bodies which cause them to act differently. Estrogen in females tends to promote a desire for a relationship and intimacy. Testosterone in males tends to produce aggression and a sex drive. If it’s so hard for women to switch our brain’s over, imagine how hard it must be for men.
Society basically tells them it’s wrong to be sexually attracted to women who they find themselves sexually attracted to.
Women want to look sexy, but then we are upset when a guy actually notices us in that way. Isn’t that a little hypocritical?
Men’s brains are wired for physical attraction more than ours are, and yet we’re telling them to block that part of their brain altogether. Maybe instead of trying to look sexy, we should try to help our brothers out. What gives us the right to ignore their disadvantage? (Let me clarify right now… I’m not referring to the icky men that are ONLY focused on women’s bodies.) I know a lot of my brothers in Christ, young godly men, struggle with lust. These are men who are working to train themselves not to objectify women and focus their attention on godly things. So what can we do to help?
Phillippians 4:8 – Finally brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.”
Paul is writing this in the context of thinking about such things while God guards our hearts – it’s a two-way street here. If we want men to be careful with our hearts, we have to remember to be careful with theirs as well. Is wearing that low-cut shirt lovely? Is going just a little bit too far with your significant other pure? Is wearing pants that are too tight admirable? There is a lot of nasty stuff out there. We can’t have pure minds on our own. However, there are certain actions we can take to help ourselves as well as our brothers in Christ to stay pure.
This isn’t meant to make you self-conscious about wearing a tank top. However, it is supposed to help you sympathize with our brothers in Christ and help THEM to stay pure and focus on their someday-wives. Maybe instead of putting all the pressure on men to “flip the switch” in their brains, we can encourage them with the clothes we wear to think of things that are true, noble, pure, lovely, admirable…. etc.
I hope that this opened up a new area of thought for you as well as maybe revealed an area of your life where you can help out one of your guy friends. After all, living as a follower of Christ is living a life about others, not ourselves.
Thanks for tuning in friends. I understand that this is a controversial topic right now and I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions even if you disagree with me.