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Rev. Paul J. Bucknell
Purpose: ￼Temptations too strong? Perhaps you need to clean up your surroundings! 'Clean up sources of temptation for lusts' is the ninth lesson on 'Embracing God's Love, Overcoming Lust' which provides a lot of practical advice to cut down the strong sensual desires. This lesson is the seventh in a series on "Reaching Beyond Mediocrity."
It is important that we clean up the sources of our temptations and lusts. If our circumstances are noted for their sensual suggestions, they complement Satan's work. We need to eliminate the sensual images coming to our minds through sound or sight. This can make life so much easier! Here are some suggestions.
When working as a teenager cutting grass, the office was where everyone went when not busy. This is where we punched our time cards. The walls were lined with nude women. I stayed outside. One can take steps to get them taken down but that is not so easy.
Don't leave one or two Playboy magazines hanging around in that box or draw or pictures on your computer. Right now you might not be tempted but at a weak moment, Satan will be able to use them to cause a little extra enticement and lead you to sin. Do away with 100% of sensual pictures including art and historical books that use them. I eliminated even some clip art on the computer.
A lot of music is quite suggestive and can brood up evil ideas especially if they accompanied you during past temptations. You want to hear things that would encourage you to think rightly about the Lord, women, marriage, etc.
Sensualism thrives at the typical party. Even if you do not participate, you might be stained from feeling left out after you return home. You might be tempted in your pride that you kept yourself pure during the party and then fall.
If the ads are immoral, then do not watch a clean program. They are linked together. A home rule: Don't start watching what you can not turn off in the middle (if what you see is unpleasing to the Lord).
I recently saw a suggestive ad on Facebook. I wrote to them and complained. They quickly removed it. I was prepared to take my whole family off Facebook. For now I can enjoy Facebook.
Someone gave us a free Reader's Digest magazine. The cover was suggestive. It makes me look twice at it because of the way it poised the woman. Instead of having a skirmish with my thoughts each time I go into the bathroom, I tore off the cover and threw it away. My wife usually does this for me (she missed this one).
When reading a paper, if there is a suggestive ad, cover it up. Don't put up with it, just cover it up or block an eye so you can read for leisure.
Never get online on the internet in a private place if you have in the past veered off. Get one of the protective networks that helps protect your online navigation. For Google, they have a place one clicks to avoid sensual pictures.
Don't visit places where you will see sensually dressed women. A pool, beach and cruise are places to take off the places to go if you are tempted. Go at off times or when dark or cold. The Lord will like this determination to keep your heart free from lusts. So will your wife!
You can never make your environment totally free from suggestive pictures and thoughts, but it is the drive to keep it clean that makes a difference. Keep it perfectly clean as much as possible. Keep yourself pure for the Lord and your woman. Again, we have addressed men with lust problems for women, but the same things apply for men for men, women for men or other women. The same things apply for lusts of all sorts. If you covet gadgets, don't go through the magazines that entice you.
Continue on to read how to purify your thoughts and really make progress against lusts!